Rob Walker (Commercial Writing ’98) has been regularly challenged to exhibit godly characteristics in secular environments while contending with deadlines and personalities. And when working for a Christian publisher, he’s enjoyed using his God-given talents and experience to further the work of local churches around the country. Since graduating from PCC, Rob has been an assistant, managing, and technical editor. “I’ve worked in editorial roles for both secular and religious publications,” explained Rob. “And both provide unique opportunities to influence the world for Christ.”
In the spring of 2021, Rob became a web content writer at Everything Kitchens, an e-commerce store specializing in cooking and kitchen supplies. “As a web content writer, my daily responsibilities include researching products and writing product descriptions,” he said. “I then enter all data and web content for each product in e-commerce platform software. I also monitor customer service feedback and update or correct errors in existing product listings.”
Rob enjoys the challenge of taking content from a rough draft to the final print product while witnessing the various authors, voices, and styles come together into a cohesive magazine. “Most of my career has centered on print magazine editorial work, and it is truly something I enjoy,” he said. “And it all happens in a deadline-driven environment. Each editorial task requires a bit of a balancing act between the personalities and priorities of authors and editors. Sometimes your efforts are appreciated and welcomed, and sometimes you find yourself challenged at every step even though you are simply trying to improve the article or its content.”
Rob’s career success stems from his training at PCC. His most significant takeaways were his teachers’ encouragement and a sharpened attention to detail. “PCC’s culture of doing things to the highest standard made an impression on me at the time, and it is something I have tried to incorporate into my career mindset,” he said.
Rob chose to study at PCC to benefit from its Christian environment while seeking God’s direction for his life. “When I arrived at PCC, I wasn’t 100% certain of my career path,” he said. Without a focused career goal at the time, Rob felt that PCC offered a wide range of educational paths and exposure to different career options.
After switching to a commercial writing degree, Rob Walker realized his passion for words as he completed each core class and writing exercise. “A career in writing and editing was not a childhood dream or longtime desire for me,” Rob said. “It was the influence of the program, instructors, and classmates at PCC that inspired and prepared me to serve the Lord through commercial writing.”
Rob was greatly encouraged by the faculty who reviewed his senior writing portfolio. “It was not all glowing praise for my writing ability,” Rob recalled. “But, in different ways, they all expressed the sentiment that they believed I was ready to pursue a career in commercial writing. With graduation approaching and nagging thoughts of ‘What if I’m not good enough to make a career of this?’ occasionally floating through my mind, their words were of great comfort and inspiration.”
“A few weeks into my first career job as a technical editor, I began to see the many ways the commercial writing program had prepared me for my career. And not just because I had passed Dr. Chapman’s Advanced Grammar and Composition class (EN 360) while having three to four major creative writing projects going all at once and all at different stages,” Rob said. “A successful career in writing or editing often requires skin thick enough to have your work critiqued and sometimes flat out criticized.”
When he began working at a monthly magazine Rob realized that his college class load paled in comparison to his current career. “At any given time, my workload included performing initial edits on articles for an issue three months out—while balancing time to line edit articles for an issue two months out—while also being available for my turn at final edits and proofing on the issue that was about to go to press,” he explained. “The pressure of building that senior writing portfolio by a certain deadline, only to have a floppy disk go bad one night in the computer lab and lose the latest versions of several of my portfolio components, seems only trivial now compared to the last-minute challenges I’ve had to navigate and resolve under deadlines as an editor.”
Rob Walker applies his skills to his career as he follows God’s leading in his life. “[The Lord] is always working, and like a stubborn author who pushes back on an editor’s changes, I have to constantly remind myself that He is working to ‘edit’ me to better reflect His image,” Rob said. “It’s easy to look back at some of the opportunities I’ve had and see His hand and timing. The challenge is to be mindful that He is still working when it seems as though things are not going as I planned.”
Read more about how God is directing and working through PCC faculty and alumni.