Saint Mary’s Student Wins Coveted Public Relations Scholarship

Holly Nguyen ’22 has achieved a unique academic trifecta, majoring in three subject areas— Marketing, Digital Media, and Communication. Her stellar standing as an honor roll student, and incoming president of the SEBA Marketing Committee made her an ideal candidate to receive the highly competitive Philip McCombs San Francisco Public Relations Round Table Scholarship. “I was very happy to hear that I had won the scholarship, because I know it’s very competitive,” said Nguyen. The San Francisco Public Relations Roundtable is led by highly respected and well-known industry professionals, so to be selected by them for the scholarship means a lot.”

Nguyen originally came to Saint Mary’s planning to major in Business with a concentration in Marketing and Digital Media, but she took a slight detour after taking a Communication class during her first year. “I was enjoying all of my courses, and decided I’d try a Communication class. It was amazing, and I was hooked,” said Nguyen. The class taught me the strong similarities between marketing and public relations, and I determined that this was something I could see myself doing in the future. I thought that I would minor in Communication, but the more classes I took, I knew that I wanted it to be one of my majors, so that’s why I now have a triple major.”

Nguyen has fully embraced opportunities to expand her foray into the communications, marketing, and public relations field with internships, and by being actively engaged with the SEBA Marketing Club. “I was just elected president of the Marketing Club beginning this fall, and I’m excited to expand my leadership skills and welcome more opportunities for students to meet and network with industry professionals,” shared Nguyen. She is also an active member of the Communication Club and the Gael Women in Business Network. Off campus, Nguyen manages an Instagram page with nearly 40,000 followers where she creatively utilizes meme marketing to repost and generate content to help market small upcoming brands that have minimal budgets.

This summer, Nguyen is interning with a healthcare marketing agency in Walnut Creek, which has reinforced her decision to pursue a marketing and communications career in the healthcare sector. “I manage the agency’s content calendar, support marketing campaign planning and execution, and assist with digital media including email marketing, social media, display banners, and other mediums,” said Nguyen. Her goal upon graduation is to work as a member of a communications team for Kaiser in Sacramento or UC Davis Health.

“I think internships are really the best way to gain experience and enter into any field,” said Nguyen. “I reached out to a lady on LinkedIn, primarily to learn about her experience in healthcare communication because she had worked at Kaiser for a long time, and now she owns a healthcare marketing agency. After we talked, she offered me an internship!”

Nguyen believes that all of her hard work is paying off in several ways. “I have wonderful hands-on classes at Saint Mary’s where I’m learning so much, I have a great internship in my desired field, and now I have a generous scholarship from the most respected PR organization in the area,” said Nguyen. “It doesn’t get any better than that.”