Spotlight on Social Sciences and Humanities Alumni: Gemma Sole
Name: Gemma Sole
Occupation: Senior Consultant, Strategy and Operations, Booz Allen Hamilton
Education (UR and additional): B.A. in Anthropology and B.A. in English , University of Rochester, 2010, Babson Business Edge.
Current city/state of residence: Washington, D.C.
Community activities: Pro-bono consulting
When and how did you choose your major?
Had I been allowed to take an engineering class without having to have declared it my major, I would have probably been an engineer. I’m kind of a strange candidate because I double-majored, minored, and got a certificate (Anthropology, English Communications, Economics, and International Relations). I basically majored in the Social Sciences. I chose Anthropology because I took Professor Robert Foster’s Culture and Consumption class my freshman year and found Anthropology to be the most intellectually stimulating.
What activities were you involved in as a student and what did you gain from them?
I founded UR Consulting Group (URCG) and I was an active member of the Creative Arts Club (CAC). Both of these were great opportunities to meet and work with a diverse range of students. I learned a lot about myself and gained experience, good friends, and some amazing opportunities. A great example of merging those experiences was planning and implementing the marketing for the Art Awake 2010.
What resources did you use on campus that you recommend current students use?
Definitely take full advantage of the Career Center, but, really, all of the resources at the school, including your fellow students. If you’re interested in entrepreneurship, visit the Center for Entrepreneurship and have a conversation with Bob Tobin who is an amazing resource. Have conversations with your professors outside the classroom. Try everything at least once if you can. And go to the library more. You will miss Rush Rhees- I guarantee it.
What did you do immediately after graduation? How did you decide to take that path?
Immediately after graduation, I interned at Ogilvy and Mather in LA while working with mentors to cement my plans to participate in the Kauffman Entrepreneurial Year (KEY) Program during the 2009-2010 year. I decided I wanted to get a taste of starting my own business and this was the safest way to do that and learn more about business, entrepreneurship, and myself. I met more amazing people in that year than I could have hoped and that experience was one of the best of my academic and professional careers.
Where would you like to be in five years?
In five years, I would like to be a) living abroad, b) in business school, or c) running my own business, or any combination of the three. Check back in 2016!
How are you still connected with the University?
I participate in a lot of Alumni Career Center events. I love talking to current students about their career goals and passions. I also stay connected with UR Consulting Group. Feel free to reach out!
What advice do you have for current students?
Decide what you want and do it. Tell everyone you know about what you want to achieve and you will be surprised how many people will want to help you make that happen. And remember, where ever you go, there you are, so enjoy it.