Jasmine Walker, Alumni Spotlight

Jasmine Walker, Alumni Spotlight

Jasmine Walker, Alumni Spotlight

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Jasmine Walker entered graduate school at Wayne State University with a plan to become a researcher in the business world. In her last year at WSU she was asked to join the Chevrolet “Call Me Out” project, where students participated in research and beta testing a new app to discourage millennials from texting and driving. Walker explained, “Through our research, we discovered that our target sample used their phones for much more than texting while on the road and that hearing the voice of a loved one through the app profoundly impacted their decision making in terms of phone usage behind the wheel.” After attending the Global Business Anthropology Summit, in 2018 in Detroit, she networked with industry professionals, she identified an employment possibility which led to her current position as an Experience Researcher for a software consulting firm in Dallas, Texas. Walker stated, “As an Experience Researcher, I help our clients (predominately Fortune 500 corporations) understand users’ wants and needs before our designers and developers get to work, so we know that the software solutions we create will be useful to users, instead of assuming we already know what they need. I get to travel all over the US and abroad to conduct contextual inquiries (a form of participant observation) in interesting places that most people aren’t privy to like power plants and package delivery distribution centers.”

Through her education and with the mentoring of advisors at Wayne State, she was able to apply her anthropological knowledge and methodologies in her current job. In her advice to Anthropology students, she suggests, “get involved in valuable (and high profile, if possible) practicums and internships to show future employers that you have some experience in your chosen field. Also, remember it is imperative to separate yourself from other applicants, so include something extra in your resume package. For example, I made a short video that discussed highlights of my education and life experiences that prepared me for the role I was pursuing…it worked like a charm! Wayne State University has a lot of untapped resources, including your professors’ knowledge, that one should take full advantage of to get ahead of the curve in today’s job market.”