Ever since I was a little girl, I had always dreamt of being a Michigan Wolverine and bled Maize and Blue well before I started my freshman year of college 2 short years ago. As I enter my 3rd year at U of M, I reflect on why it is such a special place and the multiple ways U of M has helped me develop as a leader, friend, teammate, and business woman. When I truly step back to think about it… one word immediately comes to mind: People. People are the ingredient to success at U of M, and nearly 45,000 people culminate here to learn, enjoy, discover, build relationships, and grow. People are at the core of the many things, that as a university, we pride ourselves on – innovation, intelligence, spirit, alumni, tradition, and diversity. Although we are all separate individuals, it never ceases to amaze me how Michigan is one school, one community, bonded by the common thread of being a Wolverine. Every Saturday, standing in the big house during football season, I am reminded of this incredible “common thread.” As I shout, “Hail to the Victors…,” in the largest football stadium in the country, with the power of 109,901 voices behind me, I am overwhelmed with powerful, slightly illogical emotions that are absolutely tremendous to say the least. As Michigan scores their first touchdown against OSU, I passionately high-five the screaming student next to me that I definitely have never met; however, we celebrate together, understanding and appreciating the unspoken bond that we share. The Big House epitomizes a place that successfully harnesses the power of people within their most natural state. This phenomenon resonates with me: I am part of something much larger, more significant than just myself.
Being an associate at MWW this summer was my first “real-life” internship experience. Throughout the summer, I strived to take my experiences from college, in and out of the classroom, in order to make the most valuable impact within MWW. At the beginning of the program, I made myself a few high-level goals for the summer: be an important asset to the company by making valued contributions, make as many connections as possible, and seek out learning opportunities that I wouldn’t typically be exposed to through traditional coursework. Within a week of being at MWW, I was engaged in tasks as a respected member of my various teams. However, beyond the client work, I could honestly admit that I felt immersed in the awesome workplace culture at MWW. I truly felt a part of the MWW team on multiple facets.
As I reflect back on my time here, the many parallels that exist between MWW and U of M come to light in my mind. Although being a Michigan Wolverine sounds more momentous than being an MWW summer associate, I have discovered numerous similarities between the two. Both of these communities that I am fortunate enough to be a member of have proven the power of people over the individual. Invested people strengthen a cause and keep projects on track for success. At MWW, I have responsibilities that have an important impact on the rest of the company and the clients that we serve. For example, although being tasked to compile a media list seems trivial, my efforts trickle up and essentially result in successfully positioning a client’s brand in the media. Being a member of multiple communities, groups, and networks is what enriches my life. I look forward to using this broader, all-encompassing perspective when evaluating situations, recognizing the extensive responsibilities/rewards that come along with being part of things much bigger than just myself.