Amy Kraushaar ’88 MS
On January 24, Northwestern | Connects will bring Wildcats together for events in 59 cities around the globe—rolling through 24 time zones in a single night. Amy Kraushaar ’88 MS is looking forward to joining the celebration from her home in Lisbon, Portugal, where she has lived for nearly ten years.
When Kraushaar attended the Northwestern | Connects event in Lisbon last year, she had no idea there were so many fellow alumni in her city—and was amazed when more than 40 people showed up at the event. “The minute each person walked in the door,” recalls Kraushaar, “it wasn’t about being Portuguese, it was about our shared memories of Northwestern and Chicago.” Kraushaar recalls meeting alumni from all areas of Northwestern—including Kellogg graduates, Bienen School of Music alumni who had studied under a prominent Portuguese professor, and many others.
Over the past year, Kraushaar has continued to strengthen her relationship to the global Northwestern community. She joined the Global Ambassadors program, which connects her with current students studying aboard in Portugal. She says that shared experiences with “culture shock”—as well as mutual ties to the University—have made it easy to get to know the students with whom she is paired.
A native of Fort Dodge, Iowa, Kraushaar graduated from the University of Iowa and then earned a master’s degree in strategic marketing from the Medill School of Journalism at Northwestern. Kraushaar attended evening classes at the downtown campus with other working professionals enrolled in the Integrated Marketing and Communications (IMC) program.
She developed strong bonds with her classmates and professors in the classroom, and recalls a particularly memorable course in which she worked with a team on a pitch to Spiegel Corporation for their Together clothing line. “We spent a quarter doing research and analysis, developing a creative and marketing strategy, and building an advertising campaign,” recalls Kraushaar. “It was great fun, and even better, when the Spiegel executives reviewed our pitches, our team won!”
Currently, Kraushaar works at Bizdirect, a tech company based in Lisbon, where she directs international partnership development. She has worked in advertising and strategic marketing for nearly thirty years—and credits Northwestern with helping her stay current in a constantly changing field. “I owe a great deal of my ability to evolve with the industry to Medill’s IMC program,” says Kraushaar. “The program was grounded in the necessary foundations and data-driven—even at a time when we didn’t have nearly the amount of data we have now.”
Kraushaar’s recent experiences connecting with the Northwestern community in Lisbon have helped her build new relationships and strengthen her ties to the University, and she is grateful for the impact the alumni group has had on her life. She encourages other alumni living around the world to consider attending a Northwestern | Connects event later this month.