Janica Choong | Student Stories

Janica Choong
Meet Janica Choong

Husker experience helps Choong find herself

May 4, 2021 | by Aaliyah Wells-Samci

This May, Janica Choong will graduate with a major in advertising and public relations and a minor in English. She says her proudest achievement throughout her time at the university was actually becoming the person she is today.

"All the responsibilities I took up, all the opportunities that I worked to be qualified for, they are the results of UNL showing me that I could do more, be more, and me making the decision to pursue that possibility, that 'What if?'" Choong said.

Coming to the university from her hometown of Petaling Jaya, Selangor in Malaysia through the Global Laureate Tuition Scholarship, Choong quickly became involved in various university programs. During her studies, she was a member of Jacht Advertising Agency, UCARE undergraduate research and was on the editorial board for Laurus magazine.

Choong Jacht

In her role as lead copywriter at Jacht, the student-run advertising agency, Choong loved collaborating with all aspects of the agency — including working with the creative team to pitch ideas to the strategy team and vice versa.

"My favorite memories at Jacht are the times where I would brainstorm with my team members, unique minds putting together our individual talents to achieve a common goal," she said. "The energetic atmosphere at Jacht encourages me to work harder and seek to go beyond meeting client expectations — I feel like I am pushed by my fellow Jachters to exceed expectations as a team."

My advice for future international UNL students are to be proud of who you are and where you come from. There is history and pride in you, and no one can tell you otherwise. Just be yourself, and don't be afraid of trying new things and taking on new challenges in the field of academia and beyond.

Janica Choong

One of the most distinct memories Choong has from her time at Nebraska was during the summer of 2019. She says the experiences she had that summer were what finally helped her transition to seeing Nebraska as a strange new place to somewhere she belonged.

Choong with Herbie husker"That summer, I took 3 full classes, worked 40 hours a week, moved apartments, went to the theatre every week, tried out new restaurants every other day... Experiencing Lincoln in the warm weather reminded me so much of home in Malaysia," Choong shared. "It was fun, and exactly what I needed to adjust."

As she wraps up her time at UNL, Choong will always be appreciative of her advisor in the College of Journalism and Mass Communications, Anne McConkey. It was McConkey whom Choong recalls became the first face of Nebraska as she welcomed her to Lincoln — and a lifelong mentorship that will continue even after she graduates.

"I just got off the plane, I was super flustered, I just went from tropical to snowstorm, and Anne's was the first face I associated with UNL," Choong said. "She has always been friendly, supportive, and an amazing listener. Anne, thank you."

As she looks toward graduation, Choong is currently applying for jobs in the advertising and marketing industry with an emphasis in writing. She hopes to one day work in California. But no matter where she ends up, Choong says graduating from Nebraska means she is ready for a new chapter of her life and to face the changes that may come, good or bad.

"UNL has prepared me well, and I am nervous, but eager to take the next step into a new stage of my life."

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