Nick Bayer '16 

Nick Bayer, Marist College

Nick Bayer graduated in 2016 with a Political Science major and minors in French and Vocal Performance. While at Marist, Mr. Bayer became involved in a variety of programs related to his major, including the Hansard Scholars Programme, the Marist Institute for Public Opinion, the United Nations Club, the Center for Multicultural Affairs and the Political Science Honor Society, Pi Sigma Alpha. Nick completed a Pollster Fellowship  at the Huffington Post in Washington, D.C, right after the graduation. Currently, he is the Public and Internal Events Associate at Doctors Without Borders in NYC.  

Q: What kind of work do you do in your current position?

In my current position at HuffPost, my main role is to collect and aggregate polling data for the HuffPost Pollster database. In addition, this fellowship program has granted me the opportunity to write stories and become a published journalist!

 Q: Which aspects of your Marist experience have proven most useful to your professional life?

Three of the most valuable things I learned while at Marist were knowing how to network, knowing how to adapt, and knowing how to spot opportunity and reach out for it. The networking piece is important for any job and in any major. I landed my current position because of hard work and effective networking in undergrad. Being adaptable is also key. The newsroom is extremely fast-paced. Oftentimes senior reporters will write and publish entire stories in just 30 minutes. As a detail-oriented political science student used to taking a lot of time with my writing, this was definitely a new process for me. I had to learn how to quickly spot and write a newsworthy story. In other words, I had to think less like a political science student in academia, and start thinking more like a journalist in the real world. While the writing skills I developed at Marist are very important, in this case adaptability was key.

The final piece is about reaching out for opportunity when you see it. There are so many incredible opportunities that Marist--and specifically the Political Science Department--have to offer. For example, I dove head first into the Marist Poll as a freshman and took full advantage of the opportunities offered there. After four years, I had risen to the highest student position there and had formed valuable relationships with the MIPO staff. Because of my connections at MIPO, the opportunity to move to DC for 6 months and work as a pollster/journalist presented itself. So far, it has been an incredibly rewarding experience.

 Q: What advice would you have for students just starting out on their college careers?

My best advice would be to try as many new things as possible. While you’re at school, you are in a safe and supportive environment--take advantage of that. Take different types of classes, join clubs that excite you, and definitely get off campus for a semester. Studying abroad or spending a semester in Albany, New York or DC are all ways to enrich your educational experience. I would urge any student to take advantage of the college faculty and staff as well. In my experience, a simple conversation with a professor after class about something that sparks your interest can lead to the best college experiences. Through these kinds of conversations, I learned about the Tarver Internship program, started a discussion on how to bring the new UN Club and Model UN class to campus, and found out how I could travel to Rwanda as a youth human rights ambassador. Take advantage of the opportunity that is out there and live every moment to the fullest. It will definitely pay off in the long run!