People of Central: Alexis Schuchert

Story and photo by Danielle Patrick

As COVID-19 cases are still on the rise, we won’t be getting back to normalcy any time soon. Unfortunately, this largely affects seniors at Central Michigan University. Seniors who graduate this November were hoping to have a bittersweet ending to their college career by walking across stage with their friends by their side and enjoy campus life. Sadly, the pandemic has changed everyone’s lives. CMU senior Alexis Schuchert, majoring in integrative public relations, describes how COVID-19 has changed her last semester of college.

Schuchert is a hands on, in-person learner. She loves to create great relationships with her colleagues and professors, but has found it difficult to do this virtually. Overall, the transition to online learning was easy for her.

“Online learning wasn’t as difficult as I thought it was going to be,” Schuchert said. “Obviously, there were hurdles such as learning the software of how to virtually converse with everyone, but I haven’t had too much difficulty teaching myself.”

As a result of COVID-19 still affecting millions of lives, Schuchert’s graduation will be virtual. President Davies reminded seniors that they will have an in-person commencement once the pandemic is over. Thankfully, she is able to do some “normal” activities as a senior such as getting senior pictures taken in her cap and gown.

Since her major is in integrative public relations, Schuchert needs an internship to graduate. Last December, she applied for many internships and didn’t receive any feedback in March, due to COVID-19. Schuchert found out about an opportunity through the Office of Study Abroad regarding a virtual international internship. Excitedly, she started her virtual international internship this past summer through a program called Kaya that is based in South Africa. Schuchert was a PR intern for Butter Knife, a PR agency in Cape Town, South Africa. She did cultural workshops where she was learning and immersing herself in the Cape Town traditions.

“Since it’s a PR agency, I’ve been doing client work such as writing a press release for the President hotel, compiling client reports about the media coverage we got for them, and create content on social media,” Schuchert said. “It’s helping clients get the word out about them and promote what they have to offer, whether it’s a product or a deal.”

Despite what is happening in the world, Schuchert hopes that she will receive a job that allows her to physically go to work.

On the side, Schuchert is part of an RSO called, Public Relations Student Society of America (PRSSA), where she is the Director of Digital Communications, in which she controls all of their social media. She loves to work together with her team to plan their annual internship fair, create content for social media and network with professionals.

Schuchert is a motivated and dedicated individual in everything that she does. She calls herself a “go getter,” because if she wants something, she will go for it, and she is not afraid to fail along the way.

Like many seniors, what Schuchert will miss about CMU is forming relationships with her colleagues and professors, going to events, and being in RSOs.

“I’ll still be able to do this in the professional world, but I’m going to have other adult duties such as paying bills and have a mortgage payment,” Schuchert said. “I’ll miss the kid aspect because after this, it’s the real world.”

Even though lives are affected because of the pandemic, Schuchert has advice for people getting through the difficult times.

“People should not let this stop them to follow their dreams. They should still learn new skills, immersing themselves into the industry that they’re following, and try to make themselves a better professional, even though other opportunities have been turned down,” Schuchert said. “There are many virtual opportunities, so I think people should do whatever they can do to be successful and be the professional they want to be,” Schuchert said.

A big congratulations to Schuchert and all the seniors who graduate this November.