#WhitmanWatch: Jenna Thomas ’23

The first time that Jenna Thomas ’23 visited Syracuse she was moved by the potential that she knew Syracuse University held. Thomas, from Bethlehem, PA, recalls, “I wanted to go to Syracuse University ever since I first stepped foot on campus.” The enthusiasm that her tour guide brought and the beautiful campus excited her as she imagined what her college experience could be like.

Thomas describes why she specially chose to enter the Martin J. Whitman School of Management, “I chose Syracuse because of the endless opportunities and resources that the Whitman School offered. I loved the fact that I could double major in marketing and retail management to combine my desire to pursue a career in business, like my dad, with my love for fashion, shopping and retail.”

Wasting no time as a first-year student, Thomas involved herself on campus right away. She is a member of the Delta Delta Delta sorority and will serve as a peer mentor in the Whitman School next year.

Thomas's sorority class posing for photo
(Thomas and her class of Delta Delta Delta).

Thomas has also taken advantage of the Whitman Leadership Scholar Learning Community. She shares, “I got the opportunity to go on excursions off campus, form relationships with staff over meals and ultimately meet and live with people who I will call my best friends for life.”

Thomas and friends posing for photo
(Thomas and Whitman learning community friends).

Thomas also has taken on a leadership role in her first-year. She shares, “I’m on the executive board as a blog writer for The Women’s Network, which is a networking club led by women that feature many guest speakers and help members with things like networking, resumes, internship opportunities and more.”

Aside from social and academic opportunities, she also shares the impact that the study body has had on her. Thomas explains, “As an Asian-American and going to school with the same kids for more than a decade, I struggled with the lack of diversity in my life. Throughout my life, I have faced minor adversities with people, even strangers, who approach me with uncomfortable comments merely because of my ethnic background.”

Thomas continues, “I am so fortunate and thankful for my parents and the opportunities they have created for me that helped me get to Syracuse University. I recognize the privilege I have to be able to attend a university where students of all backgrounds attend.”

The Whitman community– faculty, academic advisor, resident advisor and DellPlain Hall floormates have impacted Thomas the most. “These amazing people among so many more, that have been drawn to Syracuse University for either the same or different reasons than I, have helped me academically by diversifying my views on countless topics, challenging me to work to my full potential and legitimately changing my life forever,” remarks Thomas.

Thomas’s professional goals include using marketing management and retail management double majors to work in the fashion industry. She hopes to continue to be able to make an impact on the world. Thomas says, “My main life goals are to travel the world and experience as many different cultures as I can, to take care of my family and friends, to become the best version of myself, and to make both myself and all of the people in my life proud.”

Thomas and her mother in dorm
(Thomas and her mom during first-year move in).

She reflects, “Despite not being on campus to finish my first-year, I still bleed Orange, no matter the location. Syracuse University already has my heart, and I’m really looking forward to the time I have left here to develop even further and prepare for my future beyond Whitman.”

Learn more about other Whitman students and their experiences.

Maya Bingaman
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