Alumni Spotlight: Nicole Kiser

CCPA alum Nicole Kiser (B.A. ’20) opens up about achieving her dream of working in publishing and her role as the Managing Editorial Assistant at Penguin Random House.

CCPA alum Nicole Kiser (B.A. ’20) works as a Managing Editorial Assistant at Penguin Random House.
CCPA alum Nicole Kiser (B.A. ’20) achieved her dreams of working in publishing with her role as the Managing Editorial Assistant at Penguin Random House.

Nicole Kiser (B.A. ’20) is this week’s featured alum in our new Alumni Spotlight series for the This Week at Meadows e-newsletter. Each week, a different Meadows alum will be highlighted for their accomplishments post-graduation.



Nicole Kiser had dreamed of working in publishing long before landing her role at Penguin Random House, but it was her time in Meadows’ CCPA program that helped her realize that there are so many things that go into making a career.


Everything from where you volunteer to what your hobbies are, can have a huge impact on where you end up and what you do. One of her professors, Dr. Doric Earle, demonstrated this in spades: he had decades of experience in business, was a professor of practice at Meadows, regularly consulted, and helped run an urban farm in Dallas. 


“He was never just one thing, and I didn’t have to be one thing either,” Kiser explains of this insight that helped ignite her career. “No one goes into publishing without falling in love with books first, but there’s so many parts of publishing outside of writing and editing.”


Her experience in the CCPA program certainly provided the foundation for her professional career in publishing, but it wasn’t only the industry-specific concepts that impacted Kiser. The “soft skills” she learned during her time in the program, such as assigning tasks, organizing key information, and project management, have been extremely beneficial in her professional life as well. The combined skills and knowledge Kiser has in her arsenal helped her land a job that impacts people every day.


“Working in publishing gives this intense feeling of being a part of something bigger,” shares Kiser, who has worked on books that went on to became New York Times bestsellers. “So many people have influence on each story, stories that millions might hear about or be touched by.”


Though her position at Penguin Random House could be what Kiser considers her “dream job,” she believes students don’t need to achieve that dream job immediately upon graduating. Every step along the way helps develop new skills that can make someone a better fit for their dream role, as well as show what their dream role should be that will be the best fit for them, just as Kiser’s experience at Meadows did for her.

Learn more about the CCPA program here.