Growing up and attending public schools outside of Dallas, junior Lili Lomas would never have expected to attend a Catholic university in Washington, D.C. It was not until her mother learned of a family friend who had attended the University’s seminary Theological College that she agreed to visit the campus for a tour.
“I didn’t know anything about it, and it was really after the tour that I started considering it,” she said. “What drew me here was the Catholic identity and the D.C. location. I knew living in D.C. would open up a lot of opportunities for internships and jobs and, in the short term, fun things to do.”
"I knew living in D.C. would open up a lot of opportunities for internships and jobs and, in the short term, fun things to do."
Since that first decision, Lomas has made the most of her time at CatholicU by exploring her interests both personally and professionally. Beginning her first year, Lomas knew she liked writing — she had previously been an editor of her high school newspaper — but she wasn’t sure if journalism was the right path for her. After taking classes in both marketing and media studies, she began to see a whole new range of career possibilities. She soon chose to major in Media and Communication Studies because of the creativity and diversity she saw in the field.
“I like media because it’s so broad and allows you to try a little bit of everything,” she said.
Since then, Lomas has completed a few internships doing marketing and communications work for organizations like Young Catholic Professionals and United Way. And since 2018, she has held a work-study position as a web content assistant in the University’s Office of Marketing and Communications. As part of that job, Lomas writes articles for the University website, creates and translates websites about programs and events, and conducts market research.
“This job has been really valuable in ways that I didn’t know were possible my freshman year,” Lomas said. “I thought this would be a quick work-study position where I could get my money and go, but it ended up being really beneficial to my media development. It’s given me lots of hands-on work experience in marketing and communications, and people are always impressed that I’m creating content that is outward-facing.”
Earlier this spring, Lomas became the first Catholic University student to win a $10,000 scholarship from the Capital Speakers Club. The Hester B. Provensen and Jean C. Miller Scholarship is awarded annually by the Capital Speakers Club to an eligible female student majoring in communications, speech, or the equivalent in a 4-year institution of higher learning in the Greater Washington area.
As part of the application process, Lomas had to submit an essay and a one-minute video introducing herself, along with a resume, transcript, and recommendation letter. She received the news that she’d won over the phone while studying with her boyfriend.
“My first word was, ‘Wow!’ I didn’t know what to say and I couldn’t stop smiling through the phone call,” she said. “I don’t think it has hit me how big the award is.”
Lomas is grateful for the time and opportunity she has had to learn more about her chosen field. She has also appreciated being able to learn more about her Catholic faith while in college. In addition to pursuing a theology minor, Lomas serves as the president of Gratia Plena, a women’s ministry that discusses Catholic femininity in the modern world.
“It’s been helpful to take classes and systematically study Catholicism, but also be surrounded by Catholic culture,” she said.
“I have peers that go to daily Mass and know more about the faith than I do so that has been a major way of learning for me. It’s one thing to learn theology in your classes, but it’s sometimes more powerful to learn about your faith by seeing other people live their faith and be excited about it, which encourages you to do the same.”
— Katie Bahr, Assistant Director of Media Relations and Communications. Bahr can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.