Visit marquette.edu/coronavirus for updates.

Be the Difference

Diederich College of Communication Award Recipients

YOUNG ALUMNA OF THE YEAR AWARD

Thurnburg-SmithJessica Thunberg Smith, Comm ’03
Chicago

Jessica has been with Jascula Terman Strategic Communications for 17 years, starting as an intern and working up to her current position as senior vice president of business strategies. What keeps her there is that the work allows her to achieve her definition of success: leaving the world better than she found it.

Through her work projects, Jessica has registered people to vote, fought for common sense gun legislation, and helped pass education reform legislation. She’s also designed and implemented ticket distribution processes for historic events, such as the openings of the Clinton Presidential Library, the Illinois Holocaust Museum and the World Summit of Nobel Peace Laureates. Outside of work, Jessica strives for success by serving on the Associate Board of the Greater Chicago Food Depository.

Jesuit education has always resonated with Jessica. She came to Marquette from a Jesuit high school. As a student, she learned the importance of discernment and how it could be used to inform societal change. She also valued the mentorship of her internship advisor, Professor Carl Schrank, who listened to understand, not respond, and offered valuable guidance.

Jessica credits her Marquette experience with providing the foundation she needed to navigate life, personally and professionally. “Being recognized by Marquette for the person I am today is such an incredible honor, but I wouldn’t be the person I am today if it weren’t for Marquette,” she says.

Fun Fact:

One of Jessica’s most memorable Marquette moments was how the campus community came together after September 11. Students hung American flags from their windows. She and her roommates turned off the TV and shared a meal together. “The world changed in a day,” she says, “and my friends became family as we consoled each other.”