Student Success Spotlight: Christopher Mardiroussian – Master of Arts, English with an emphasis in Rhetoric and Composition

Chris Mardiroussian is a graduate student at California State University, Long Beach. In 2018, he won First Prize in the Cinema Italian Style Film Festival (sponsored by the prestigious American Cinematheque in Los Angeles) for his short film entitled IL BREAKUP, which he co-wrote and produced. In 2017, he co-wrote a collection of poetry entitled HONESTY. LOVES. CRUELTY. His work has appeared in Bloom Magazine, BOMBFIRE, Ice Lolly Review, Soul Talk Magazine, Sunstroke Magazine, and elsewhere. He lives in Glendale, California

What’s the best advice you could give to incoming graduate students?

Graduate school can be intimidating to say the least. however, if there’s anything I’ve learned throughout my experience, it’s important to forge strong relationships with both your professors and peers. Your professors are available to hear any thoughts, concerns, and/or ideas that you may have; so, don’t be afraid to reach out to them because not only do they want you to succeed, but they certainly want to help you along the way and explore your interests in your field. Moreover, some of my fondest memories have come from peers that I’ve met and knowing that when at times I feel stressed and/or overwhelmed, we can have study groups, go to the coffee shop to vent, laugh with one another, or even speak on the phone with them. All in all, I’ve had the pleasure of having a supportive faculty and incredible group of peers that have made me feel part of the CSULB family. Without them, I would’ve felt lost, alone, and a needle in the haystack. At the end of the day, forging those connections with your faculty and peers will make navigating through graduate school a more insightful, meaningful, and sublime experience!