MS in Marketing Alumni Perspectives: Thomas Carpino

Our MS in Marketing students come from many different backgrounds, but share a common goal of acquiring the advanced skills needed to enhance their current and future careers in marketing. In our ‘Student Perspectives’ profiles, we explore both current student and alumni perspectives on choosing to pursue a specialized Master’s degree at USC Marshall and the overall impact of our program.

November 13, 2017

Thomas Carpino's picture


Thomas Carpino 



MS In Marketing, Class of 2017



BS, Marketing, San Diego State University, 2016


Current position

Assistant Strategist on the Activision account, OMD  


What did you do before the MSM program?

Before the MSM, I was a full-time student at San Diego State University. During my time in undergrad, I also managed to get some very unique experience in creative marketing. From July 2013 to January 2017, I worked with several companies as a Social Media Influencer. I managed a cross-platform global audience of almost one million people. I produced creative content for popular apps, brands, and upcoming movies. This experience allowed me to interact with clients, implement creative strategies to engage with audiences, and lead effective and organic marketing campaigns. I have generated over 48 million views on one social network alone, and was ranked the top 100th most followed person on Vine in August 2013. 

My first internship was with Allied Integrated Marketing as a Publicity and Promotions Intern in Spring 2015, where I worked as a college representative for Paramount, Marvel, and Fox. This internship required that I communicate professionally and multi-task in a fast-paced environment. In Spring 2016, I became a Creative Services Intern for The Lambesis Agency. At Lambesis, I developed social strategies for the agency, and worked on several brand campaign activations. My last internship was in Ad Sales with Viacom, where I assisted in the development of campaign and network updates for internal and external parties. At Viacom, I was responsible for staying abreast of current trends and insights for client industries, using internal and third-party research databases. 


What made you apply to the program?

I had always wanted to further my educational journey and absorb as much knowledge as I possibly could. While I originally intended to pursue an MBA, I chose the MSM program since it was geared toward my specific career field interests, and allowed me the opportunity to learn about marketing from a multitude of different angles. I found out about the program about 2 months before I graduated from SDSU and decided to take a chance and apply!


How did the program help you further your career? Did you learn skills that you can apply to your current job?

The program not only helped me master marketing strategies and tactics, but it also presented amazing networking opportunities. I had over 20 informational interviews with successful individuals working at Google, PlayStation, 72andSunny and more, all of whom graduated from USC and were a part of the Trojan Network. Outside of the amazing education, I learned applicable skills that can apply to any career such as how to interview and how to market myself. From an educational standpoint, the program was amazing because it utilized real-world situations that allowed students to think strategically.


Who was your favorite professor?

My favorite professor was Professor Gerard Tellis. His advertising class was phenomenal, and taught me methods and fundamentals I am actually leveraging in my current position. 


How did the program help you grow personally? 

To be transparent, the program gave me a level of confidence that I did not have before. It helped me improve my skills in leadership, collaboration, creativity, and analytics. Most of all, the program taught me how to sell myself and build my personal brand. 


Looking back at the time spent at USC, what would you have done differently?

I wouldn't change a thing! I loved this school and the faculty so much I might come back for one more degree sometime very soon.


What are your best memories from your time at USC?

My best memories were building friendships with people who were just as motivated and determined to be as successful as I was. Everyone was goal-oriented, and it truly brings out the best in you. I made life long friendships in the program and for that I am forever grateful. 


How was your experience of living in LA?

I had a great time living in Los Angeles. You get what you make of it, and I chose to explore all of Los Angeles until I found the right place. For me, that place was Playa Vista! 


What advice do you have for the current class?

My best advice would be to get out of your comfort zone. Go out and network with people. Apply for internships, practice your interview skills, and learn from successes and failures. Just because you obtain a MSM degree does not guarantee you a successful career upon graduation. It takes time, preparation, motivation, and hard work to reach these goals. 


Who should apply to this program? What advice do you have for the applicants?

This program is for determined individuals who are interested in any form of marketing and advertising. If you're interested in furthering your education and you want to learn about branding, consumer behavior, or marketing analytics, then this is the program for you. 


Describe your MSM experience in 3 words.

Innovative, Creative, and Exciting