A Guest Post by Diana Ochoa

Jason’s note: Diana Ochoa is graduating from American University this weekend. While it will not be the traditional pomp and circumstance we’ve come to expect due to the coronavirus pandemic, Diana is gazing forward thanks to her college journey. She originally wrote this post for an assignment in my digital and social media analytics class. I’m happy she agreed to allow me to share it here.

This past week, I put together an entire online portfolio. This was something that I’d always been meaning to do, but never committed enough time. I’m happy that this was my “final” for Professor…


For many college and university students, early March was the scheduled time for Spring Break. You’d head for home and relax. Maybe you would get your materials prepared to apply for a summer internship, or a job. For seniors, it was the last break before graduating. Instead, the last days of Spring Break turned into a break from on campus life for the foreseeable future.

American University Quad with several people walking and playing catch on a pre-spring, sunny day in February of 2020.
American University Quad with several people walking and playing catch on a pre-spring, sunny day in February of 2020.
The Eric Friedheim Quadrangle on American University’s campus. This was taken three weeks before the announcement of classes moving online.

Since American University’s announcement on March 12 that classes would be moved online, it’s been an adjustment for all. Faculty pivoting from teaching in class; students heading back to campus to gather up as much…


No matter what sport you may have played, whether as a youth, or even into adulthood, there is the mental aspect that requires a focus for success. What we don’t always realize -as fans- is the aspect of mental focus that causes inner pain. Athletes perform at the highest levels. With that expectation from themselves, team executives, and fans, comes a rush of emotions. Look at a team that has just won a championship; then, take look at the team that lost. Both are exhausted physically. The mental exhaustion may not be seen right away. But, it’s there. …


Will all be forgotten once the games begin? It doesn’t appear that way.

(photo courtesy: AP)

Hope, they say, springs eternal. Well, if you are a fan of the Houston Astros, or baseball in general, you can only hope that all the talk starts to be about the 2020 season on the field. Right now, though, everyone in Major League Baseball has an opinion of the cheating scandal that has rocked the game. During a normal spring, the focus would be the start of spring training games. But, aside from the questions like, “What’s your goal this season?” and “Can you win another…


Unless you’ve been asleep (or just staying off of every form of media today), you’re aware that we, in the United States, are in the thick of the political cornucopia known as the Race for the White House. Democratic candidates for President of the United States are traversing the country in hopes of gaining enough delegates to be the person to face incumbent President Donald Trump. However, there is one thing that doesn’t change, regardless of the political season: Taking a stand either in favor of, or in opposition to, a hot button issue.

The idea of standing up for…


Update, Jan. 27, 2020: Planters’ parent company, Kraft Heinz, announced on Monday that it is pausing all of the activities around the Mr. Peanut campaign in the aftermath of Kobe Bryant’s death.

Mr. Peanut is Dead. The 104-year-old wasn’t too salty as he fell to his demise following a tragic NUTmobile crash on Wednesday, Jan. 22.

A monocle with a tear with the words “In Memory of Mr. Peanut” at the top, his living years at the bottom.
A monocle with a tear with the words “In Memory of Mr. Peanut” at the top, his living years at the bottom.
Courtesy: Planters

At some point on Wednesday, whether it was on Twitter or Instagram, you probably saw that Planters, the makers of the snack, posting about Mr. Peanut “dying” in a car accident. The campaign, er…, I mean, exclusive footage, shows the legume traveling in the…


Ever since the advent of social networks like Facebook and Twitter, there have been those who embraced it fully. Of course, there are others who were not so eager to share their thoughts and ideas.

The Millennial Generation (last birth year was 1996) have been considered as the early adopters, therefore labeled as social media proficient. If you are part of this generation, you’re familiar with family, teachers, and even those interviewing you for jobs, say, “You get social media,” or “Your generation has been using social media for so long, you’re experts!” Fair or unfair, being social media savvy…


We have a lot of questions for social media networks. And rightfully so. In an interview with Wired earlier this year, Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg told the magazine that they have a three-year goal to fix what has gone wrong. There’s been Cambridge Analytica and Russian election-tampering to name a few. Twitter is no stranger to the question of trust, either. In fact, an Oxford University study found that there is 5% more fake content than during the 2016 Presidential Election cycle. Trust is an important part of being able to work as an effective communicator. …


The Past is the Prologue.

Progress. It’s a word that has many meanings. Webster defines it as “a royal journey marked by pomp and pageant.” It also means gradual betterment. Progress is something I consider daily, but not just for myself. It’s how students progress and what progress we make in evolving the industry of public relations.

Ever since changing my career focus to public relations, I’ve met many people who have helped me make progress and (hopefully), in turn, I made a small impact on them. That’s why this new blog series, “PRogress in Communications” is being launched. …


Grandma at the Grand Canyon (Mollica Family photo)

Catherine Roe was a widow longer than she was married. The word “widow” never really suited her because in many ways (though she never said so), that would have been an excuse to my grandmother. And she never made excuses.

On July 1, 2018, my Grandma passed away at age 92. While I knew the day was coming, it still hurt tremendously. She was a remarkable woman, who I will always love dearly and will miss for the rest of my life.

Grandma was the daughter of Irish immigrants. She and her two sisters never had things easy growing up…

Jason Mollica

Prof. Lecturer, @AU_SOC. Digital strategist/analyst; speaker, branding champion; proud husband & father. @TempleUniv, @GradPurdue alum. Truth & Ethics.

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