Since I was in high school I pictured myself working as an account manager at a huge advertising agency in Manhattan. I wanted to work on projects that would be shown in Times Square and live in a small loft that I could barely afford. I had this dream for my first two years of college and I really did not see this dream changing. I have always been a city person, which is part of the reason why I came to Temple, but I didn’t think Philadelphia was big enough for me. I have just always had New York City in my head, ever since I was a kid. Today I would still love to live in New York City, but my goals have changed since starting my internship.
First, I didn’t realize how many options I have when it comes to what I do with my career. Just because I’m an advertising major that doesn’t mean I have to work at an advertising agency. Right now I am a Marketing & Event Planning intern at a start up clothing boutique – not exactly what I pictured myself doing, but I love it. At first I wanted an internship at an agency, but when I noticed that I missed all of the deadlines for applying, I realized that I would have to broaden my horizons a little and look into other options. I’m definitely happy I did not just give up because I didn’t find an agency to intern for. Now I get to do work with event planning, which has always interested me but I never thought I’d actually pursue it. I also focus a lot on social media and coming up with different social media campaigns. I have enjoyed doing this more than I thought I would when I first started. Now I’m a lot more open minded and realize that maybe I don’t want to be an account manager at a huge agency. Maybe I want to work on social media for a small company, or event planning for a small firm, etc. My internship for the summer is at a somewhat smaller agency, allowing me to experience a different side of the industry.
Second, I have realized that I don’t have to be in NYC to be a part of awesome projects and campaigns. Philadelphia has shown me that it has so much to offer. Because my internship is at a start-up, my boss has a number of connections and that number is constantly growing. Every day there are people coming in to meet with my boss either to discuss social media, advertising, marketing, photography, graphic design, web design, events, etc. I have been able to meet a lot of young professionals who all work in the industry in Philadelphia and who have become very successful. Besides just getting a box full of business cards, I also got to meet and talk to these people and they were all quick to say that if I ever anything to give them a call. I scored two interviews at agencies through people I have met at my internship. The whole “it doesn’t matter what you know, it’s who you know” has proven to be somewhat true lately. I am getting my foot in the door here in Philly and that has opened my mind to thinking that maybe I don’t have to live in a crappy studio apartment in the scary part of NYC working for a huge agency where barely anyone knows me to be successful or happy.
Overall, being at my internship has definitely given me an open mind to my future career. I never wanted to be one of those people who didn’t know what they wanted to do with their career, but now I kind of am, and I don’t mind. I know that I want to be in advertising/marketing/events, but I have seen that there is so much I can do. Taking this unique internship was one of the best decisions I’ve made because now I am exploring my options. Maybe I don’t want to be an account manager and I am glad I am seeing that now, rather than later in life.