Meet Phil Rosario: The coolest UMass alum around

Advice from a grad for post-grad life

Born and raised in Massachusetts, Phil Rosario is an entrepreneur, people enthusiast and downright social media extraordinaire.

He agreed to talk to us at The Tab about his experiences since leaving the Zoo in 2015 and advice for soon-to-be-grads.



To start us off, I’d love for you to tell me a bit about yourself. Where are you from and what did you study at UMass?

I’m from a land not so far away known as Lawrence, MA but now live in Brooklyn, NY (Bushwhick to be more specific). I studied Marketing at UMass and focused on advertising, media, and culture.

Since graduating in 2015, what are some highlights or favorite experiences you’ve had after leaving UMass?

It definitely feels like I’ve been gone for much longer than 10 months.

Moving to New York and starting my first job at Teen Vogue literally two days after I walked for graduation was kind of a dream come true, and although I was warned, the job wasn’t what I actually expected.

Don’t get me wrong, it had its serious perks. Invites to the coolest parties, fashion shows and concerts, free food, clothes, and cosmetics… but I just wasn’t passionate enough about the actual work I was doing and knew that I was meant to be working in advertising.

I’ve met so many AMAZING people in New York, and I’ve learned that who you know is one of the most important parts of growing personally and professionally in a city like this. I have friends that work in fashion, finance, PR, and retail, and that in itself gives me all of the perks I could ever need.

Now I’m working in my actual dream job doing work for Google at a cool ad agency in Brooklyn. Although I don’t see 10 pairs of fierce ass Louboutin heels a day, the puppies surely make up for it.

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I’m glad you’ve been enjoying New York and that you’re working at a job you really love now! Seeing friends do well is encouraging, and definitely makes college students (like myself) hopeful about post-grad life.

I think people are hesitant and scared to move somewhere like this because:

A. they think it’ll cost too much money,

B. they think they wouldn’t find a job, and –

C. their only impression of New York is hellish Times Square.

My first job’s salary was less than 30K. I had multiple job offers and continued to hear from companies even after I was employed. Times Square sucks. If you want to live somewhere, go there. Things will work if you do.

Who was the most influential professor you had at UMass?

My favorite professor was Felicitas Baruch. She taught my Comm 331: Program Processes in Television class. She was technically my TA for the course, as she taught my smaller section of the class where we filmed short films and live TV shows.

She was the only professor to ever make me feel like I could enjoy the work I was doing. Her passion was so contagious and she encouraged doing work that made you happy. I felt like so much more than just a student trying to get a college degree.

If you could go back to college, would there be anything you’d do differently?

I wouldn’t have left my acapella group, Wicked Pitch.

I took my first semester of junior year off from extra curricular(s) because I wanted to really work hard on my academics, but I always regretted leaving WP. They were the first group I joined when I started at UMass and were always there for me even when I left. They were some of the most supportive friends I’ve ever had. I remember going to watch them rehearse before their last show of my final semester and leaving in tears – happy and sad, of course.



Do you have any other favorite memories from college?

Hate to sound basic, but a lot of my greatest memories were at concerts at the Mullins Center. There was always something about a floor filled with thousands of, for a lack of better words, zoo animals that made me feel so amazing.

What advice do you have for current undergrads?

Get your asses to the dining hall, take a seat, and eat until it’s time to put on your cap and gown… lol jk

But in all seriousness, I think it’s really important to understand that there are SO many opportunities out there in the world that the university doesn’t tell you about. Spend 10 minutes a day looking up opportunities online because you never know what you’ll find. And never sacrifice your passions for a paycheck.

And go to Berk.

@okayword is truly the cutest human.

@okayword is truly the cutest human.

You can follow Phil online through his Instagram and Twitter @okayword.

UMass Amherst