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Gerald Djajaputra CAS Highlights

Gerald Djajaputra is originally from Delray Beach, Florida, Gerald came to EMU to compete for the forensics team with a major in Political Science and a minor in Economics. As graduate student Gerald received his M.A. in Communication and taught COMM124 Foundations of Public Speaking, coached for the EMU Forensics team, in addition to running the EMU Forensics social media page. Gerald’s fondest moment at EMU was when he came back to get his M.A. after being away for a year, “I got back to EMU and was greeted by one Professor Ray Quiel. He welcomed me with open arms and whispered in my ear “Welcome Home.” That moment defines how I feel about EMU and EMU Forensics, simply put it’s home”

Gerald also had this to say about EMU Forensics, “I think it’s important to note how important EMU Forensics is to so many students including myself. I was able to get an education because of EMU Forensics. Three years ago, I laid in a hospital bed sick and not knowing what would happen to me, EMU Forensics and the people I met became one of my motivations to keep fighting. I wanted to get back, to compete, to coach, to give back to a program who has given me so much.”

Of his many accomplishments at EMU Gerald is most proud of his Masters Project, a website he created called Breakthrough (www.breakingthroughmentalhealth.wordpress.com). The website contains information and resources to help Asian Americans struggling with mental health. “My advisor Jamie Ward was instrumental in helping me create this resource. She guided me during my research and imparted incomparable knowledge about public relations, strategy and advocacy so that I could create a resource that was going to leave an impact with the community. The website and resources within have gained considerable success having received multiple testimonial submissions from Asian Americans who want to share their stories of dealing with mental health.”

When asked if he had any advice for new and current students Gerald had this to say “Don’t be afraid to ask for opportunities. Your professors are well connected and all it takes is an email asking them if they know of anyone who can help you further your career. If it wasn’t for my advisors, I wouldn’t have had opportunities to work with companies and non-profits to gain experience in the field.”