Hello! My name is Colson Thayer and I am a journalism student based in Des Moines, Iowa. Below, you can read more about my education, work experience and career goals.


I am currently pursuing my bachelor of arts in Journalism and Mass Communication at Drake University in Des Moines, Iowa. I am majoring in both Multimedia Journalism and Magazine and Brand Media, along with a Music minor.

My time at Drake has allowed me to take part in plenty of on-campus organizations and activities. The most notable is Drake Mag, our school’s lifestyle magazine. I quickly stepped into a leadership role as the first-year assistant editor in the fall of 2022. The following May, I made the change to business & PR director. I now manage Drake Mag social media accounts and handle relationships with advertisers and sponsors.

The education provided at Drake has allowed me to pursue another passion: music. I am a part of the Drake University Marching Band, Drake Jazz I and Drake University Wind Symphony. These opportunities enhance my liberal arts education and improve soft skills like time management, developing interpersonal relationships and more.

I am on track to complete my degree in May 2025. After that, I am considering pursuing a master’s degree in communication or similar field.

Work Experience

My practical experience in the communications industry began when I was a senior in high school. Through Waukee Community School District’s School-to-Work program, I became an intern at Big Green Umbrella Media Inc. The company produces one of Des Moines’ alt monthly magazines, CITYVIEW, and the Iowa Living Magazines. I continue to write for both.

For over two years, I have written CITYVIEW’s monthly business journal feature story. This requires a more factual writing style, geared towards business owners as readers. In Waukee Living Magazine, I write the Where We Live column. This is a more lighthearted piece, where I can explore creative storytelling. Both opportunities strengthen my ability to adhere to both our in-house style and AP style. They also developed my strong reporting, researching and writing skills.

In January 2022, I joined the West Des Moines Chamber of Commerce team as an editorial intern. There, I wrote various feature pieces for their website and branded content in their 515 WEST magazine. I also managed their weekly WDM News newsletter.

During the summer of 2023, I was a communications intern at Des Moines Performing Arts. I was able to combine my passion for the arts with my professional interests. I quickly learned how to utilize the media monitoring software Meltwater, wrote a variety of blog posts, assisted with marketing material and observed non-profit media relations.

That same summer, I was lucky enough to be a part of NPR’s NextGen Radio Project at Iowa Public Radio in July. This is by far, one of my favorite professional experiences. Over the course of the week, I was able to work side-by-side with some of the best in public radio. I was paired with IPR’s John Pemble. He coached me throughout the week while I worked on a story about a Ukrainian student living in Iowa while her home country is at war with Russia. I told this story through a 3-minute non-narrated audio piece, a written piece on the web and multimedia content including photos and an interactive map.