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MC Spotlight: Hunter Campbell
Everyone in life endures setbacks, but it’s in how you deal with the setbacks and move forward that serves as the true measure of one’s success. “I was not a great student when I came to college and [it] created a lot of obstacles between myself and my education,” said Metropolitan College alum, Hunter Campbell, who lost some of his financial aid after not performing well academically his first few semesters of college.
Campbell, a graduate of Lone Oak High School in Paducah, KY, joined the Metropolitan College/UPS program as a part-time package handler working third shift as a way to pay for college without going into debt. After six years working in the operation, Campbell accepted a frontline supervisor position as a path to a career with UPS.
Campbell thrived academically at the University of Louisville (UofL) as a Metropolitan College participant, and despite having to take a momentary break from his academic studies to tend to unforeseen personal matters, he graduated from the university with his Bachelor of Arts in Communication in December 2013.
A few months after graduating with his bachelor’s degree, Campbell applied for a job opening in UPS's Strategic Communications department. “I didn’t get it,” said Campbell. “I did make some good contacts and when the next position opened, I got the job, which was writing for the UPSLaunch newspaper. I was later promoted to my current position.”
Today, Campbell works in UPS’s Strategic Communications department as a writer and editor for the UPSLaunch newspaper. The UPSLaunch newspaper was honored by the Louisville chapter of the International Association of Business Communicators/Public Relations Society of America with a 2017 Landmarks Award of Excellence for Publications, the organization's highest level award.
When asked to share the most rewarding part of his current work, Campbell replied: “The best part of what I do is getting to meet, learn about and tell the stories of the exceptional people we have working at UPS.” Additionally, Campbell shoots photos of employees and events, and does some basic graphic design and video production. Campbell is still early on in his career and plans to spend the next five years developing his technical and professional skills to prepare for wherever his career takes him next.
Campbell’s advice to Metropolitan College participants looking to make the most of the program:
“It's not easy but it's completely worth it. It can be a grind, but at the end you'll be debt-free and in a great position to start your professional career and be in control of your future. Employers will also look favorably on someone who was willing to work and sacrifice for what they want.”
Moreover, Campbell credits mentors for his career success and professional development. “You can always be trained to learn new skills, but there's no replacement for learning from those with experience,” said Campbell. Campbell recently decided to volunteer to be a mentor for the Metropolitan College Online Career Guide Program, a new career development initiative which connects current students and recent graduates with experienced professionals for valuable career advice and one-time feedback on their resume, LinkedIn profile, and online career portfolio. Campbell looks forward to connecting with students through the Online Career Guide Program.
Campbell concluded his interview by sharing, “Thanks to UPS, I had a path to get through college debt-free and build the foundation for my career.”
Learn more about Hunter Campbell’s Metropolitan College experience and career advice in this Q&A.
Q: What professional skills and qualities do you find to be most valuable in the workplace and why?
The skill I find most valuable in any field is communication. Being able to speak, write and communicate your ideas clearly to a variety of audiences is very important. I also believe the ability to think critically and effectively under stressful or difficult circumstances is very important.
Q: What is the best career advice that you ever received?
Take your work seriously, but not yourself seriously.
Q: How has your degree or credential shaped your career or supported your success? How have you applied it to your field?
Because I'm fortunate to work in a role so closely tied to my degree, I use those skills every day. I apply skills and concepts like messaging, audience analysis, interviewing and storytelling in almost everything I do. Many of the same skills that are core to my degree, especially in terms of understanding how to communicate in different ways with different groups or individuals, are also applicable to almost any field.
Q: What advice would you give to those aspiring to join your field?
They should know that the communications field is always changing, so they have to stay connected to what's happening. It's not just knowing how to use social media or other forms of communication; it's knowing how to use them to accomplish whatever strategic goal you have in mind. It's also very important to be well rounded. Communicators, especially in social media and journalism today, need to understand the fundamentals of writing, video, photography, design, etc., because professionals are being asked to be more versatile outside their particular area of expertise.
Q: What were your biggest challenge as a MC participant? What contributed to your success with balancing academic, work, and personal life?
The biggest challenge was learning to budget my time. There are a lot of demands on your time as a college student anyway, and adding a night job didn't make it any easier. My wife (girlfriend at the time) thankfully helped keep me on track when I started and I eventually settled into a routine.
Q: What is an interesting or fun fact about yourself?
My two proudest accomplishments are being a good father and husband, and graduating from college. I've been married to my wonderful wife Hannah for a little more than five years. We have one son, Russ, who is three and another little boy due to be here in April. When I'm not watching cartoons or playing Chutes and Ladders with my son, I love to cook, golf, and watch sports, especially Louisville City FC soccer and my beloved Kentucky Wildcats basketball.
Q: What is your favorite quote/life motto?
The poem "If" by Rudyard Kipling is something my dad shared with me when I was young, and it always stuck with me, especially the lines: "If you can keep your head when all about you Are losing theirs and blaming it on you, If you can trust yourself when all men doubt you ... then you'll be a Man, my son!"
Metropolitan College is looking for current and former Metropolitan College participants to spotlight! If you know of someone, please contact Renecia Griffie Davis, Student Development Counselor at firstname.lastname@example.org or 502-852-2534.
“This journey has not been easy … but hard work and perseverance pay off,” says Smith who has already earned nearly $30,000 in tuition benefits, book reimbursements and academic bonuses.
"Thanks to UPS, I can go to school and graduate debt free!"