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Senior Stories: Communication

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Communication class with Donna Downs

Taylor exists to develop servant-leaders marked with a passion to minister Christ's redemptive love. In this Senior Stories series, you’ll read about students seeking to serve through many different fields and careers explain how God has used Taylor in their lives. 

Taylor's Communication Program

Careers in communication require creativity, strategy, organizational skills, and more. Taylor’s Communication program offers several different majors, like Professional Writing or Public Relations, to help you learn from professionals and gain experience in the field you're interested in. Meet a senior graduating from our Communication program:


Name: Kylie Gerber '20
Major: Public Relations
Hometown: Bluffton, IN 

Why did you choose Taylor and your major?

I originally had no intent of coming to a private Christian college, let alone Taylor. I had set up a visit months in advance, and when the day came to visit, I told my parents I didn’t want to come. But my parents essentially made me visit, but I’m really grateful that they did. Throughout my visit, I really loved what I saw. I appreciated the way the professors spoke to the students, I really liked the environment in chapel, and Taylor is a really beautiful campus.

Choosing my major was maybe just as difficult as choosing a school. I changed my major about four times! But I finally decided that PR would be a good major for me because I absolutely love working with people. I also love how versatile it is, and I don’t like to be put into a box.

Have you had any internship experiences?

I actually did three internships throughout my time here at Taylor. I did one my sophomore year through Sturtz Public Management Group that lasted a couple of months. I did another one my sophomore year through Thriving Families, Thriving Grant County in Marion, which has extended into a job for the past couple of years. Finally, I did one over this past summer at Mentoring Moms, Inc in Fort Wayne, and I am now part of the Leadership Team there. 

I learned so much through these internships, especially from the two that are still a part of my weekly activities. They are incredibly different, one working in community development, and another working with women in crisis. Mostly, I have learned how to be a leader and to take initiative while following Christ.

What are the most important things you've learned in your major classes? Can you give an example of an impactful class?

In my Cases and Campaigns class we had the opportunity to do hands-on work for Taylor University. We conducted a case study over the Title IX policies at TU, and afterwards we did a campaign for the university. I loved getting to see the impact of a semester-long project come full circle. It’s also something I’m very passionate about.

How has your faith been affected by your Taylor experience?

Coming to Taylor has given me the opportunity to explore my faith and for me to decide what I believe, especially through my Historic Christian Belief class and Contemporary Christian Belief class. I never knew there were so many different views or interpretations, so I have loved getting to learn more about what others think, too. I also had the opportunity to go on the Footsteps of Paul trip to Greece and Italy, which completely changed my perspective of the Bible, and who Christ is to me. That trip was incredibly impactful.

What people have had the greatest impact on you during your time at Taylor?

First and foremost, my advisor Donna Downs, has impacted my time here greatly. Donna has really been by my side through so much, and always takes the time to encourage me and all her other students. She is incredibly selfless and a great role model. She is kind, but she is also courageous, and she really pushes her students to do their very best.

In what ways do you feel prepared for your future because of your Taylor experience? What are your hopes for your future career?

I feel like I have developed my skills as a professional, and have really grown to learn how to own my abilities and strengths. I feel like I am prepared to work with a diverse group of people, learn how to communicate well, and to empathize. For my future career, I just hope that I can always be passionate about what I am pursuing. Whether it be in community development, or at a non-profit, I hope to be making a difference.