This is the blog of the MWW Interns. Here you can observe our experiences and exciting projects. Interns in every department from Visual Branding to Financial Relations will be updating and documenting our experiences on a weekly basis. Follow us to get an inside look at what a true interning experience is like at MWW!
 

Just a Small Town Girl

Posted by: Jessica Voss
September 25, 2014

JessicaVossKansas is exactly how you imagine it. The ground is flat, the people are exceptionally nice, and there is no shortage of farm land.

I was born in a small town west of Wichita with approximately 6,000 residents. I grew up knowing everyone and everything about them — good and bad. When I was a senior in high school, it was time to decide where to apply for college. I could have taken the safe route and stayed home, earned my associate degree and then went on to a four-year university. Instead, I realized I needed a change. I decided to attend the University of Kansas in the fall (a daring choice because the majority of my classmates committed to attend Kansas State University).

My first week at KU was rough. I only knew five people out of the 24,000 students attending. My friends and family from home encouraged me to break out of my shy personality and engage in conversations with anyone and everyone. (After all, they are in a new environment too!) Eventually I knew the majority of people in my dorm, classes and sorority. These connections helped lead me to a new passion, journalism. I took an interest in what my friends were studying and changed my major because of it.

That passion has led me to where I am now. Dallas felt close to home but far enough for me to feel independent. I packed my belongings and made the leap from Kansas to Dallas in May, and I couldn’t be happier with my decision. After I put a deposit on an apartment, I received a call from MWW offering me a position as an Associate. Everything felt right and worked together. The city atmosphere was overwhelming at first, but since I’ve moved I made new friends, tried different foods and learned about cultures other than the one I grew up in.

I moved from a small town, to a large university, and now I live in a city with 1.2 million other people. It’s not always easy to leave your hometown, but if you take a chance you never know where you’ll end up.

Posted by Jessica Voss at 5:00 pm | Comment (0) | Trackback (0)



New Lens, New Perspective

Posted by: Jessica Gaddis
September 18, 2014

JessicaGaddisSpring Break 2012 was probably the most eye opening experience of my life. I was chosen to travel to the Middle East to serve as an ambassador for my university at our campus in Doha, Qatar. After the initial feelings of surprise and excitement, the fear started to settle in. I had never traveled outside of the country, much less overseas. I’ve never even been to Canada and I’m from Michigan! While it has always been my dream to go to France or Greece, Qatar had never crossed my mind.

When I thought of the Middle East, I immediately pictured the images that circulated CNN and ABC regularly. But what I came to see, was a country that seemed to be doing much better than the one I had traveled from.

I had absolutely no idea the beauty I would see in the Middle East.

My group and I traveled all around the country, which is so much more than just sand and dust – although a huge dust storm had just passed a few days before we landed.

We traveled to “the giant pearl” which is basically a huge fountain that looks like a clam and has the most beautiful faux-pearl inside. Apparently, Qatar is famous for fresh water and salt water pearls. I actually got to purchase some for much cheaper than they are in the states.

I was also able to travel to a market that had a seafood shop with a fish smell so strong that I still smelled it an hour after we left. I even got to meet students at Education City, where universities like VCU and Carnegie Melon have campuses.

By far, my best experience in Qatar had to be with the food. We went to a restaurant where we thought the first course was the whole meal because it was so huge. These are just a few examples of the images of Qatar that I would have never gotten a chance to see living in the states.

I say all this to say that sometimes it takes digging your feet into the sand on the Persian Gulf to realize that everything isn’t as it seems. We all owe it to ourselves to take a look with our own eyes, whether it’s atop a Camel, thousands of miles away, or in our own backyards.

Posted by Jessica Gaddis at 5:00 pm | Comment (0) | Trackback (0)



So… What Can You Eat?

Posted by: Taylor Glickman
September 15, 2014

TaylorGlickmanJust imagine being able to eat anything you want your whole life and one day having that gift taken away. Unfortunately, I can say I’ve had that experience.

Growing up, I could eat whatever I wanted without a second thought (as does most of the population); a few years ago that changed. I began noticing that often when eating, my mouth would get super itchy and red. These reactions continued for a few months – I knew something was up. My cousin has been allergic to nuts since we were young, so I know the symptoms and the possible severity of the situation. I saw a food allergist and was told that I was allergic to tree nuts, peanuts, fruits and shellfish (basically anything and everything delicious). Since then, I have become so sensitive that it is impossible to consume anything with a seed – even ketchup bothers me!

Needless to say, the results from the doctor came as a complete shock to me. I never had to think before I ate (unless I wanted to), read every label, or find out every ingredient. Now living with serious food allergies for years, I’ve noticed just how much people take little things for granted, like simply going to a restaurant. For me, ordering a meal is such an ordeal! It is always the same routine: listing my plethora of allergies to wait staff and making sure they double (really, triple) check with the chef to ensure it safe to eat. Even after I am told and told and told that I will be fine, it’s up to me whether or not trust them.

Eating is one of the greatest joys of life. While I have to calculate every bite of food that goes into my mouth, I’ve come up with my own assessment framework. It’s all in the details. My relationship with food is colored entirely by my allergies. ‘May contain…’ is a sure way of getting me wound up and I make a point of choosing these brands over others.

In public relations, it is crucial to be able to measure the effectiveness of a campaign. It also requires the ability to recognize and prepare for both positive and negative outcomes. Therefore, being able to generate a risk assessment framework, usually on demand, holds immense value as skill and service. Who would have thought that being allergic to the world would help me master risk assessment and management?

Posted by Taylor Glickman at 3:35 pm | Comment (0) | Trackback (0)



Let’s Land an Internship!

Posted by: Iman Cole
September 4, 2014

An internship is an important part in your development as a successful professional in my opinion. It allows you to learn, grow and experience the field. In college, I sought out influential people in the PR industry to shadow. Sometimes those efforts were just meetings to pick peoples brains, and others actually turned into internships. So I’ve complied some of the tips I used to land great internships, hopefully they’ll do the same for you!

So here’s my first tip: don’t be afraid to ask for help. Seek direction from people you admire and respect in the industry; they are where you want to be. When I did land those internships I worked really hard to land a job because that’s the goal right? I think so. Sometimes those efforts panned out and sometimes they didn’t, but that’s life. Everything doesn’t always go your way.

Which leads to my second tip: Work hard for you, not because someone owes you something, but because you owe it to yourself to be great. When those job efforts didn’t pan out, I tried and tried again. And one day, pretty recently, maybe even now as I’m writing this, I realized that everything happens for a reason. I feel every opportunity that I have been privy to has been an influential learning experience.
The PR industry is a hard one, and it takes preparation to be successful in. This leads to my last and final tip, tip number 3: stay present and appreciate every experience, even the bad ones. In the long run they’ll prepare you for something great.

Posted by Iman Cole at 5:00 pm | Comment (0) | Trackback (0)



Associate vs. Food

Posted by: Eric VanSlyke
August 28, 2014

EricVanSlyke3In 2012, like most recent graduates, my girlfriend Jamie and I were jobless and living at home in Connecticut. Knowing that she needed to be in Los Angeles to truly get her TV Production career jump started, and I was able to work in sports in any major city, we decided to take a risk and make the move to Los Angeles. On March 4th, 2012, we set out on a 6-day road trip across the country.

That is not the story that I will be telling however. This is a more specific story of that trip. This is the story of how we ate our way across the country. Given that I love shows like “Man vs. Food” and “Diners, Drive-ins, and Dives,” I used this road trip as an opportunity to visit some of the restaurants featured on the shows.

Our first overnight stop was in Columbus, OH where we had dinner at the famed Ohio Deli. I ordered the towering Dagwood Sandwich, halfway through my meal, which was made up of five slices of roast beef, five slices of ham, five slices of turkey, lettuce, cheese, garlic mayo, and a side of fries, I had reached my limit. The Dagwood was delicious, but I did not stand a chance at finishing it.

Lunch the next day was in St. Louis, Missouri where we ate at the Iron Barely. I ordered the most popular menu item, the epic Monte Cristo Dog, which consisted of two split open hot links, two toasted-open hot dog buns covered with strawberry jam, and melted Swiss cheese on top. The mix of the sweet jam and the salty dogs went perfectly together.

Next was the Big Texan Steak Ranch in Amarillo, Texas. Their specialty dish is a 72-ounce steak. I chose not to order that as we had eight more hours until our next stop and I knew I needed to be alert and not falling into a “food coma.” I still got a steak, but chose the more modest 21-ounce piece, which was delicious. However, I did get to the see the 72-ounce steak in action, as there was a party of five trying to eat one.

On Day three of our trip, we were in Albuquerque, New Mexico and eating dinner at Saddies where Man vs. Food had been the previous year. I ordered the combination platter, which consisted of a taco, an enchilada, and tamale all covered in cheese. I was in a cheesy Mexican food heaven.

After the next day’s Grand Canyon visit, and a stay in Las Vegas, we were on the last day of our trip. At breakfast on day, six and we went to the Man vs. Food favorite, Hash-House A Go-Go, where they specialize in over-sized breakfast plates. I ordered the Snickers Pancake, which as you can guess has chunks of Snickers in it and was about the size of a hubcap. After eating three pancakes worth, which was only about half of the pancake, I called it quits.

Four hours later, we arrived in Los Angeles, full and excited for our future in our new home. Additionally, even though it is years down the road, we have already started planning our eventual trip back, looking to conquer the northern half of the country this time in cities like Seattle, Denver, Minneapolis, Chicago, and Buffalo. Not sure if this trip with be fully digested by that time though.

Posted by Eric VanSlyke at 5:00 pm | Comment (0) | Trackback (0)



Big Lights Will Inspire You

Posted by: Tayo Rockson
August 21, 2014

There’s a certain magic to living in New York City and being a dreamer. Maybe it’s the energy that emanates out of the skyscrapers in Manhattan or the way the city lights take on a personality of their own at night. Either way, there’s just something mystical about wanting to change the world and having the city back you up on that.

So armed with this feeling, I decided to embark on a creative adventure this summer. I set a goal for myself to redesign my website, write two books and a whitepaper and launch a podcast all by late August. Why? You ask.

Why would you do all this writing and work? What about the outdoor concerts in the city or the amazing atmosphere in Central Park during the summer. Well my counter to your why is why not? If we only live life once, I consider it a disservice not to live our lives to the fullest, so I am simply doing my version of that.

That being said, of course I will enjoy the outdoors in the city and bask in the atmosphere but I will also set out to accomplish my goals.

The subject of all this content will be about navigating through different cultures and embracing one’s global identity. I was born in Lagos, Nigeria, and even at an early age I have been fascinated by other cultures and what makes them tick. Even now as I am living in my 13th home, fifth country, and fourth continent, my itch has not lessened one bit. In fact, all I see is opportunity around me.

  • Opportunity to erase conflict and understand each other.
  • Opportunity to celebrate diversity and…
  • Opportunity to help create the next set of global leaders.

I am aware that this is a lofty goal and my goodness it is, but like Alicia Keys sang in “Empire State Of Mind”, “big lights will inspire you”. And that’s exactly what living in this amazing city for 10 months has done to me. It has reawakened my desire to teach and has strengthened me enough to chase a dream. A dream that I have absolutely no idea if I will achieve or not – stay tuned.

So for me this summer is about setting up a platform to touch as many lives as possible. See if I achieve these goals at my digital house or you could always stop by online condo to say hi.

There’s a certain magic to living in New York City and being a dreamer.

Posted by Tayo Rockson at 5:00 pm | Comment (0) | Trackback (0)



What I Learned from my College Reunion (Yes, Already)

Posted by: Elizabeth Lloyd
August 13, 2014

The best way to describe Princeton Reunions is an annual cult gathering of alumni for three days of excess and extravaganza. There are fireworks, celebrity performances, strange chants and my favorite part, a three-hour parade (dubbed P-Rade) of alumni going back to the classes of the 1920’s. I went back for my one-year reunion a few weeks ago, as did many of my classmates, and we all donned the cult uniform of garish class jackets and all manner of orange and black.

I bring up Reunions not to get weird looks at the office (of which I already received plenty when I wore said outlandish class jacket on the way to Reunions), or to indulge my pride in our insane traditions (okay, maybe just a bit), but because an inevitable part of Reunions is hearing the question a million times from acquaintances old and new, “So what do you do?”

When I say to young alums, “I work for a PR agency,” I am most often met with blank – though sometimes vaguely impressed – stares. More often than not, they are out of their depths. Granted, this isn’t the case with older alums who have spent more time in the business world. Nonetheless, I think this demonstrates two problems that public relations faces as a field. The first is that public relations is hard to define and even harder to explain.

This leads to the second problem: not enough people from the liberal arts consider public relations as a career. As an English major coming from a school that offered few pre-professional majors, programs or classes, people expected me to go into academia, the arts or teaching. I balked at the idea that these were my only options, laudable though they are. I thought about what I had learned as an English major, and, in addition to more ineffable and personal qualities, I realized I had honed three essential skills: reading, writing and research. Sure, one could argue these skills are adaptable to many careers, and that is true. However, I think it’s especially true for public relations because, in addition to networking and building contacts, these are the skills that make us most valuable to our clients. We have to make judgments based on enormous amounts of media we read and interpret, write for many different audiences – from our clients, to the press, to consumers – and find whatever information our client needs or that we need to stay informed. That’s why more of my orange-and-black clad humanities majors should take a closer look at communications.

Posted by Elizabeth Lloyd at 6:00 pm | Comment (0) | Trackback (0)



Cadet Dory

Posted by: Dory Baron
August 7, 2014

In Hebrew School, I thought I learned a lot about my Jewish heritage. That is, until I went to Israel.

Four years ago, I studied abroad in Israel for a semester in high school. During that time, I went through the same training as Israel Defense Forces (IDF) soldiers. To this day, I have never been more physically or emotionally challenged. I learned more about my personal strengths and my Jewish heritage than Hebrew School ever taught me. Most importantly, I learned how far I can push myself.

“Grenade!” Commander Gili gives us three seconds at 4:00 AM to jump out of
our cots, and hit the deck. I am exhausted. I am 5,703 miles away from home, one of forty-five high school students studying in Israel, participating in the Eisendrath International Exchange program. This week I am living at Gadna in Stay-Boker, Israel, for basic training with the Israeli Army.

Dressed in Israeli army gear, I quickly leave my tent and line up waiting to be
inspected by my head commander. The rules were strict, the punishment was firm.
No English is allowed, and all instructions are given to us in Hebrew.

It’s pitch black and we are boarding a bus on our way to an empty field. “Camouflage!” I drop to the ground, and have three minutes to remove my jewelry, cover myself with
mud, and put twigs and leaves in my hair so that I will not be detected by the enemy. I feel my identity being lost.

“Yalla!” Commander Gili lines us up, and we are sent off on a three-mile run back to the base. An hour later, hot and hungry, we are seated in the mess hall and given bread and spam to eat to fuel our bodies for what was about to come next: a crash course on how to shoot an M-16 rifle.

After learning about the parts of the gun, we were off to the shooting range, where we are given headphones. For the first time in my life, I am handed a live weapon. As I dropped to the ground, once again, I am face to face with the target. “Esh!” I could feel the recoil
the gun had made against my body. After all ten shells were on the ground, I picked
one up, and held it close to my heart, only imagining what the Israeli soldiers really
feel as they use such an intimidating weapon.

The next day, our bodies are trembling with fear of what will come next. We
climb rope, jump over walls into mud pits, and run through tires in an obstacle
course. If we did not complete the course in less than five minutes, we were told to do fifty pushups.

Our journey had finally reached its end. All forty-five of us are surrounding
David Ben Gurion’s (the first prime minister of Israel) grave. Finally, I knew what I was training for this whole week. At last, I understood what it meant when Gili said, “The Israeli Army is a defense army. We never put our guns on automatic.” The preparation, teamwork, and survival that I committed myself to all paid off when it came to expecting the unexpected. I now know what it means to be a team soldier, and for whatever life may throw at me, I’m ready.

Posted by Dory Baron at 5:00 pm | Comment (0) | Trackback (0)



Pride of the Lion

Posted by: Colin Brown
July 31, 2014

ColinBrownMost high school guys spend their Friday nights playing Xbox, going to see the latest action movie in theaters, or playing in their high school’s weekly football game. Well like many of them, I never missed a football game. In fact, some people would say I had a pretty critical role on the team. Some people would say I was the most notable face of the night. Some people would say it wasn’t a game without me, while others would just ask “Who’s the kid in the lion costume?” That’s right. I was my high school’s mascot, ‘Reggie the Lion.’

Just look at me as every father’s dream come true! I mean, I was at every football game, knew all the rules, and even traveled with the team. The only difference was that I just did the whole “football” thing my way. Look, athletics have never been my strong suit. When you grow up performing at the New Jersey’s State Theatre, singing Broadway hits, and tap dancing in local community theatre, you aren’t exactly the coach’s first pick for Quarterback.

So when I got to high school I knew I had to make my mark in a different way. Though, I never expected my “mark” would involve sweating in a 30 pound furry cat suit. I guess you never know what the world’s going to bring you!

It all started because of my freshman year American History teacher, Mr. Simpson. Every history teacher at my school coached a sport, mainly football, basketball, or lacrosse. Some even coached Girl’s field hockey. Needless to say, they loved the athletes. With this being said, my lack of skills on the field didn’t exactly set me up to be the Teacher’s Pet in the History Department. However, thanks to my outgoing personality and never-ending chattiness I won over Mr. Simpson. It became apparent his way of relating to me was to laugh politely at my jokes and stick me in a lion costume – his version of making me athletic. Mr. Simpson’s the one that encouraged me to try out for the mascot job. That’s right – there were tryouts.

I had to prepare a minute-long skit where I was instructed to act something out in the mascot costume without speaking. I chose a crowd favorite, a workout routine to “Let’s Get Physical” by Olivia Newton John. The 70s-born cheerleading coach loved it. You can call it one of my first public relations lessons in knowing your audience. And that’s what it took to get the job of Reggie the Lion.
Now that I won my spot on the team, the next step was performing at my first football game. You might think it would be embarrassing to dance in front of a thousand people dressed in a head-to-toe lion outfit, but it was quite the opposite. I oddly gained a lot of self-confidence. I didn’t have to worry about how I was feeling that day, or worry about how my hair looked. I didn’t even have to worry about being judged for looking goofy – goofy was implied in the job description. I just had to worry about entertaining the fans and having fun. My personal insecurities went out the window for the two hour game.

That’s a lesson I keep in mind on a daily basis. I think, in a lot of cases, true happiness comes from expressing who you are to your full capacity. I believe the first step to building positive relationships with others is developing a positive relationship with yourself. How can we be expected to accept other’s flaws, if we can’t even accept our own? And let’s face it; flaws are a common place in everyone’s social life, office life, and relationships. We just need to make daily small changes to better ourselves and forget about harping on negativity. I guess you can call this my take away from my mascot days.

Posted by Colin Brown at 1:00 pm | Comment (0) | Trackback (0)



Brighton Up

Posted by: Christina Young
July 22, 2014

After growing up in New Jersey and attending Rutgers University, I knew I was ready to study abroad and explore a city other than New York. In my head, I always pictured myself studying by the Thames in London, at a cafe in Paris, or putting my four years of German to the test in Berlin.

To my dismay, the only program appropriate for my major was in Brighton at the University of Sussex’s International Summer School, a city and school completely unfamiliar to me, located almost two hours away from London. Not going to lie, I was initially a little bummed about being so far from where I had always imagined my study abroad experience to be—especially since I arrived about a week before the London 2012 Olympics.

Getting off the plane at Heathrow and directly on a bus to Brighton was bittersweet. Catching a glimpse of the Tower Bridge (with Olympic rings!) was not fun. But I was with one of my best friends, excited to arrive at school, see where we would be spending our summer, and make new friends.

I didn’t expect to love the young, vibrant, south coast city of Brighton, at least not as much as I knew I would love London, but I did. The University of Sussex’s International Summer School draws in students from all over the world, and within two days, I had friends from Los Angeles, Chicago, Germany, and The Netherlands. As cliché as it sounds, I really learned so much more outside of the classroom. I mean, how can you not? I spent nights on Brighton Beach with my European friends, talking about differences in healthcare, what our hometowns were like, and the best condiments for French fries—the verdict? Nacho cheese.

As a communication major, I loved the challenges that intercultural communication created for me in building relationships abroad. Technology is continuously making our once very big world more globalized. More and more companies are opening offices overseas, making it more crucial to understand your international audience, especially in the public relations field. If I didn’t study at an international summer school, I would not have had the same experience, and would not have noticed that I want to take my career on a global track. For that reason, and so many more, I wouldn’t trade my time in Brighton for anything.

Posted by Christina Young at 1:00 pm | Comment (0) | Trackback (0)