2018 Best & Brightest: Katie Dickens, Wake Forest University

Katie Dickens

Wake Forest University

A passionate storyteller, avid sunshine enthusiast, and lover of food.”

Fun fact about yourself: I love to scrapbook the old-fashioned way- cutting out photos, gluing them to pages with hand-written captions and cheesy stickers.

Hometown: Raleigh, North Carolina

High School: St. David’s School

Major: Business and Enterprise Management with a Concentration in Marketing

Minor: Spanish and Journalism

Favorite Business Course: Brand Management and New Product Innovation

Extracurricular Activities, Community Work and Leadership Roles During College:

  • Spanish Tutor
  • PR Director, WFU Love Your Melon Campus Crew
  • Co-President, WFU Style
  • President, Beta Gamma Sigma
  • Student Advising Leadership Council
  • Student Adviser
  • Public Relations Intern for WFU School of Business
  • Research Assistant, Accounting Professor in School of Business
  • Teacher’s Assistant, Professor in School of Business
  • Intramural Volleyball Enthusiast

Where have you interned during your college career?

  • Wilmington Design Company, Wilmington, NC: Digital Marketing Intern
  • Lumina News and Wrightsville Beach Magazine (dual internship, sister companies), Wilmington, NC: Editorial Intern
  • Wake Forest University School of Business, Winston-Salem, NC: PR Intern
  • Monkee’s of the Village, Winston-Salem, NC: Social Media Intern

Where will you be working after graduation? Still a work in progress! I am hoping to find a role that allows me to combine my passions for content creation, branding, and marketing in the digital landscape.

Who is your favorite professor? My favorite business professor has been Amy Wallis. I had the opportunity to take her ethics course and then work with her to prepare for an international trip to Nicaragua, where we taught business concepts like HR and marketing to local businesses in Managua. Her passion for her students and willingness to help others is so inspirational and I consider her to be one of my role models!

What did you enjoy most about your business school? I’ve enjoyed my relationships and lessons learned from our incredible professors at the School of Business. Every single one of my professors has taught me a different lesson and invested in enriching my personal experience at the School of Business. They are all so incredibly accomplished in their respective fields and are gold mines of wisdom for us students.

What advice would you give to a student looking to major in a business-related field? I would advise them to continue to engage with their other passions outside business, because they’ll be shocked to see just how well business aligns with every other area of study. They’ll be able to apply lessons learned in their business classes to what they’re learning about in art, computer science, physics – you name it!

“If I didn’t major in business, I would be majoring in or studying… Art and English! And I would 100% keep my minors in Journalism and Spanish, but maybe add in a Computer Science minor too!”

What has surprised you most about majoring in business? I’ve been surprised at how my extremely technical courses, such as Quant 1 and 2, Accounting, and Finance, have overlapped with my more broad BEM courses such as Ethics, Leadership, and Marketing. For example, I remember discussing the infamous United Airlines fiasco of 2017 in more than three of my classes, but through very different lenses and perspectives. These surprises have truly shown me how holistic my business education is.

Who most influenced your decision to pursue business in college? My older sister attended Wake Forest, and minored in entrepreneurship. She told me that she wished she had considered the School of Business when selecting her major, because she fell in love with all of her entrepreneurship classes. I took her advice to heart and have never regretted it!

Which academic, extracurricular or personal achievement are you most proud of? I am most proud of being named the president of Beta Gamma Sigma, the School of Business honor society. I have worked incredibly hard in my classes and hold myself to very high standards with regards to my scholastic achievements, and accomplishing that goal through an academically rigorous junior year has been one of my proudest moments in college.

If you were a dean for a day, what one thing would you change about the business school? I would try to incorporate more programming for our international students. We have International Education Week, which includes many events for international students, but I would try to incorporate more programming and assistance for them into the business school practices. They have enriched my personal education so much, and I would love to help them feel even more loved and accepted in our community.

Which classmate do you most admire? This directly relates to my previous answer, but I hold my friend Luna Zhou in incredibly high regard. We met during a pre-orientation program freshman year, and have remained very close ever since. Her intelligence and hard-working attitude inspire me to be a better student, and her charm and humor remind me not to take life too seriously!

Who would you most want to thank for your success? I would like to thank my parents. Without them, I would be without the support system that has propelled me to believe in myself and strive to be the best version of myself. Their unwavering support has taught me to focus on what is most important in life.

What would your theme song be? I’m a big oldies fan – anything from the Motown era is my theme song! “Man in the Mirror” by Michael Jackson is one of my all-time favorites. It’s impossible to not feel inspired to conquer the day after listening to it.

What are the top two items on your bucket list? I have always wanted to run a half marathon- and am currently training for my first one (March 31st, here I come!). I’ve also always wanted to travel to Australia.

Favorite book: Constantly changes, but right now: Barbarians at the Gate

Favorite movie: Clueless

Favorite vacation spot: Grand Cayman Island

What are your hobbies? Photography, Writing, Reading, Cooking, all forms of exercise, but

What made Katie such an invaluable addition to the Class of 2018?

“Quiet confidence” is the phrase that comes to mind when I think of Katie. She is a leader, without a doubt, but a leader who guides others rather than pushing them, and a leader who people want to follow. This is demonstrated through her tendency to listen first, then speak; her willingness to place others in the limelight; and her desire to see those around her succeed. Her exuberance and interest in others are infectious, supporting her success with those who may be less confident or experienced than she, and her maturity and humility are comforting, helping her to engage with those who have more experience or knowledge to share with her. I saw this in the classroom, as well as when Katie joined me as my teaching assistant in an MBA course where we traveled with a group of working professionals to Nicaragua. Katie was welcomed by the group, and supported their learning so well that they invited her to be a member of their team and work with them as an equal. Her spirit and drive truly motivate others to be at their best.”

Amy Wallis, Ph.D, Professor of Practice

Academic Director for WFU Business Abroad Programs

Graduate Student Honor Council Faculty Advisor

Wake Forest University School of Business

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