MSU Alumna Suzanne Sena is Inspiring Self-Belief with “Confidence Connection" podcast
Suzanne Sena is an Emmy-nominated television personality, former Fox News channel anchor, and the founder of Sena-Series Media Training. She also played Brook Alvarez on the comedic TV series, The Onion News Network. She's an author and keynote speaker, and she's an alumna of Michigan State University and native of Dearborn, Michigan.
“I have such fond memories, and I love to get back whenever I can and see the beautiful campus,” Sena says. “I think only later in life do you realize how fortunate you were to be at such an amazing place to get your education. It's really cool.”
Sena describes her career path from leaving MSU in 1985 to where she is today leading Suzanne Sena CreativeWorks, LLC, the parent company to all her creative endeavors.
“It’s been an unusual career path, which I think in itself is a lesson. I think when we go to school, we think we have to know what we're going to do, what we're going to be when we grow up, and what we're going to do when we graduate. And the truth is I found that the book of my life has so many different chapters. I never could have anticipated many of them. I would never have believed that the whole direction would change completely at one point or another, or do that several times, but it really has.
“I will be honest, and I think this is an important message. Throughout my career, I would have people say, ‘Don't. You're trying to do too much. You can't be this and be that. You can't be an actress and also go there and be a reporter now. No one will take you seriously.’ Don’t listen to people who say, ‘You have to choose one direction.’ You don't, and whatever you choose now, doesn't mean that's where you stay forever. But everything builds upon everything else.”
In March of 2020, Sena launched her podcast “The Confidence Connection.” One of her favorite quotes is that confidence is contagious.
“It was really about getting the message out about confidence. I wanted to have access to people who knew more than I did about some things. I find that so inspiring. I'm a trained interviewer and feel I'm a good host. I'm so deeply curious about people so I conduct the interviews for me. Then people have access to those people through me. And it turns out that overall, the message is the same, pandemic or no pandemic. We want to know about the people who've made it, how they made it, and what struggles they went through so that we are inspired.
“Over the last year, we've seen such an increase in people listening to podcasts. They've looked for more forms of entertainment. And then by virtue of finding one, they look for others. It's a great medium. And it's also a great outlet if you're creative and you have a message you want to get out there.”
Sena talks about why MSU was the right college for her coming out of high school. And she describes how her time at MSU has helped her to get to where she is today.
“At MSU, I learned what I was capable of, and I was treated with respect. I had unlimited opportunities, and my skills were able to be developed and noticed. Then when somebody I respected respected me, it made me feel better about myself.”
Sena says that the enormous changes in the communications world also bring enormous opportunities.
“The biggest thing is to learn to take advantage of the trends. I remember attending a conference about 10 years ago with all the network TV and studio heads. They were saying within a year or two people would be watching television mostly on their devices. And I thought that was ridiculous. Now I look at my phone to see the latest episode of the Handmaid's Tale or whatever I'm watching.
“Get as much knowledge as you can and don’t limit yourself. Communication is evolving and making everything more accessible and every dream more attainable.”