Kari Lukovics (Public Relations and Writing & Rhetoric ‘12 alumna ) acknowledges the interdisciplinary nature of the Harrington School as a crucial part of her success. She says it allowed her to, “think of subjects like public relations, communications, and film as interconnected,” providing her with, “the freedom to be creative, curious, and to think critically all at once.”
Kari’s journey through the Harrington School was remarkable. Her advice for current students is pertinent to all: “Have high expectations for yourself,” she says. “Set the bar high, and then, at every opportunity, be so bold as to go above it.”
Kari credits the interdisciplinary skills she learned at the Harrington School for her early success. Kari recently accepted a new position at Axial, a start-up technology company based in New York City that connects private business owners with investors, capital-providers, and advisors. The job marks an exciting shift in her career path. Prior to her new position, Kari was an Account Manager at Gorkana Group, Inc. where she was responsible for retaining clients like Peppercomm and Fleishman Hillard that subscribed to Gorkana’s public relations software. Now, at Axial, Kari facilitates successful partnerships between business owners, investors, and capital providers using marketing and sales. “I was really excited to be a part of the Axial team because it gave me the opportunity to learn a new industry,” says Kari.
The skills that she learned at the Harrington School allow Kari to work across industries. During her undergraduate years, Kari was heavily involved in the Harrington School with both students and staff. She was a Resident Academic Mentor in the Harrington School’s Living and Learning Community (LLC), where she lived with and advised Harrington School Freshmen students. During this time she often shadowed Deans Winnie Brownell and Tom Zorabedian, before working under Founding Director of the Harrington School, Renee Hobbs. With these leaders she worked on multiple projects, including developing the Harrington School prospective students info sessions, facilitating Advisory Board meetings, and creating the first-ever Harrington School publication. Her work served as a model for future students, and by the time she graduated, there were ten students working as Harrington Rangers, performing similar functions for the School. As she remembers fondly, “helping to create that program was one of my most proud accomplishments in college.”
“Kari always demonstrated an exceptional work ethic at URI–in the Dean’s Office, as our RAM in the LLC, and as a Harrington Ranger,” said Tom Zorabedian. “Not only did she complete assigned tasks very well, but she also developed her original ideas and successfully initiated them. That’s a rare quality in any employee. I could see how she would take a creative, interdisciplinary approach to projects, which is exactly what we encourage in the Harrington School.”
Kari also served on the executive board of the Public Relations Society (now a chapter of PRSSA), where she created the first-ever “Social Media Social,” an annual event that brings together industry professionals for a panel discussion and networking opportunity. The event drew more than 250 students, business leaders, and community members in its inaugural year.
Emma Clarke, 2016