Leah Thompson

Q&A with Leah Thompson, School of Journalism Dean’s Award Recipient

Major: Integrated Marketing Communications
Hometown: Olive Branch, MS
Campus Activities: UM-DeSoto Ambassador, Phi Kappa Phi Alumni

Q: Did you attend Northwest prior to transferring to UM-DeSoto?
A: Yes, I received an associate of arts at Northwest in 2017, then took my prerequisites for the IMC program and began at Ole Miss DeSoto in Fall of 2018.

Q: Why did you choose to attend UM-DeSoto? Why did you select IMC as your major?
A: I chose the University of Mississippi – DeSoto because of the location and price. Also being able to work and go to school was a priority of mine. Like many college students, I struggled with knowing what I wanted to major in. One day I found the Integrated Marketing Communications program, and I instantly knew that’s what I wanted to do. IMC has a variety of skills to learn and job opportunities, which are the reasons I was drawn to the program. The teachers in the program are amazing and invest their time into you.

Q: What is your favorite memory of attending UM-DeSoto?
A: My favorite memory of attending UM-DeSoto is being an ambassador. I was able to help with orientation and recruiting. I loved being able to tell students how awesome the IMC program is. Food Truck Day and Student Appreciation Day are also memories I will cherish and miss greatly! In the fall, you might still find me at Food Truck Day, because it’s truly the best!

Q: Can you tell me about your work with the Southaven Chamber of Commerce?
A: I currently work for the Southaven Chamber of Commerce as the Marketing Coordinator. I have been working there since November 2019. Some of my responsibilities include managing social media, promoting our events and members, and also many other day-to-day duties. I enjoy my job so much! Being able to see the good in the community and help small and large business owners is so rewarding.

Right now, we are promoting and supporting our members and DeSoto County more than ever. The entire chamber staff has been in contact with over 700 individuals in the business community providing resources and vital information during this pandemic. We have advocated for business owners with Congressman Kelly’s office, the Governor’s office, Mayor Musselwhite, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce and the Small Business Administration in D.C. We have also collaborated with area chambers of commerce to ensure consistent and the most up-to-date information is available.

Q: What are your plans after graduation?
A: My plans after graduation are to continue to work at the Southaven Chamber of Commerce as the marketing coordinator. I’m also getting married in May! I’m going to miss being a student, but I’m so excited for the life changes ahead. I want to say thank you to my teachers and school leaders that have been so encouraging and helpful along the way. I think I am well-prepared for the world because of them. I’ll forever miss Ole Miss DeSoto. Hotty Toddy!