My name is Marissa Ward. I am a senior advertising major with a concentration in copywriting. This semester, I have the pleasure of working at Red Tettemer O’Connell and Partners (RTOP) located in Center City. I’ve wanted to intern at RTOP for a year ­– and I was not disappointed.

RTOP is fast-paced, eccentric, and inspiring. RTOP is an independent agency, meaning it is not owned by a parent company; this is what helps make it a truly unique agency. The people and subsequent culture at RTOP are welcoming and supportive of crazy ideas – because those are the ones that just might make history.

The beginning of my internship kicked off fast. After a short tour of the beautiful office (pictured below) we were given our first assignments by our supervisors.

The first month or so of my internship was filled with Dietz Nuts, constantly looking at the directory to memorize names, and learning everything about tools for CRAFTSMAN. During my internship, I’ve worked on brands such as: Reyka Vodka, Flor de Caña rum, CRAFTSMAN tools, MorningStar Farms, Sierra clothing, and Bring Change 2 Mind. I’ve greatly enjoyed being able to work on consumer brands and learn to keep pace with this buzzing agency. During my time I’ve create a combined 120 social media posts for CRAFTSMAN and Flor de Caña. I created the concept for a new campaign for Bring Change 2 Mind, and wrote a lot of copy that has gotten thrown out along the way.

What I’ve learned most from this is that confidence and persistence is key. Being the small fish in a big pond can feel daunting at times. Coming back to work after a day off to find the campaign has evolved can be intimidating. However, the work doesn’t stop for anyone. The people at RTOP are some of the hardest working people I have ever met, and keeping up with their work flow has been the most rewarding and challenging aspect of my time here.

I wouldn’t trade my 4.5 months at RTOP for anything in the world. This has given me a great experience at a creative agency where crazy ideas make a crazy impact. This has inspired me to peruse a career within a creative agency. When I first started in the advertising program, I thought I wanted to work at a more digital and technical agency. This experience has showed me I’ve chosen the correct path for myself, within a creative agency that appreciates their people, their ideas, and goes into every project head first. What a long, strange ride it’s been!