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Share Your Story: #CFACgrad Tessa Ostivig

Tessa Ostivig, who graduated in April 2020, reflects on her time at BYU


Ostivig graduated in April 2020. (Courtesy of Tessa Ostivig)

“Why are you here?”

Jessica Zurcher, my Comms 101 professor, took the last twenty minutes of our first day of class to let us answer this question. I was a sophomore, recently returned from my mission and at a loss of what to do, what to major in and what I wanted in life.

As I returned from my mission, I had found myself fascinated more and more by language — the ways we as humans communicate and portray our ideas to each other — so I enrolled in a communications class.

And then it hit me. I remembered that my patriarchal blessing talked about being a communicator. “You will be able to communicate clearly those things that are important to you.” That line had never occurred to me as a career path, and this class began to open my mind as to what that could entail. As I walked through the day, I realized that it wasn’t just talking to people that brought me the most joy in life, but it was sharing ideas and making other people see the possibilities that I saw that was so important to me. I loved learning and making connections to become the best communicator I could be.

I love working with people and have truly enjoyed being with the great people, mentors, and communicators of the public relations program. I’m excited to apply the skills and lessons I learned here at BYU. I’m glad that I found the “why” to why I was here.

The publication of student articles allows the College of Fine Arts and Communications to highlight the experiential learning opportunities and behind-the-scenes experiences of students and faculty and tell stories with a unique voice and point of view. Submit your story at