Last Friday as I toured around RPA for the first time I just so happened to arrive on a day where a cupcake vendor arrived to the social media team. Boy was it a tasty day to tour.
It’s been about a week now that I’ve driven 17 hours across state lines into a new world that I hadn’t really been formally introduced to - unless you count that state crossing guy who asked me if I had an abnormally large amounts of plants in my car.
Yes just a week ago the thought of Mimi was just a feint Eiffel tower way in the distance. Only now the crepes in the morning, and the french roommate is real. The walk out of my apartment and seeing the Pacific Ocean is real. The drive through these streets I once drove on Google street view is very tangible.
My first few days of awkward “Hey what do you do for fun?” and “Hey, I’m the new intern that sits in the back in the dark” have come and gone and I’ve dove headfirst into some work that I’m digging. Working at an ad agency isn’t really what I thought it would be. I pictured a scene from madmen where my ‘girl’ would hang up my coat and I would open a bottle of whiskey before a meeting. Only here my ‘girl’ is the chair I sit in and well…the whiskey part is true (not really, mom).
I’ve enjoyed my first few days of seeing touristy things: the Santa Monica Pier, Chinese Grauman’s Theatre, and briefly seeing the Hollywood sign. Places I’ve seen in movies are literally footsteps outside my door. I’ve also met some great coworkers who tend to double as friends.
I do miss my good friends from back home, and my family and have been thinking about them both quite a bit lately. I do know I’m working towards a future that I can see myself fitting into - so for now I’ll eat my cupcake and enjoy the view.
Well the time has come. The trunk is full, and I’m leaving tomorrow morning to head out to Santa Monica, CA for an internship opportunity. I couldn’t be more excited for this new opportunity and have been looking forward to a new experience for quite some time.
I’m also scared.
Four years ago I took a leap to WT and found the most amazing people at the most amazing school (see above). I fell in love with the area. I grew up here. Discovered more about myself than I ever thought was possible. Traveled abroad, and found some passions that I didn’t know existed.
I’ll be leaving behind all of my friends who have become my family. The memories we have made will always remain. From the first ‘Happy Birthday’ at Buff Branding, to the winking at a friend during their presentation, and rolling my eyes at another that would state they were going to be “the next Katie Couric” the first time we met. It’s been a ride.
I’m ready for a new challenge and ready to go out into a real world setting and develop the skills that college has left me with. From the panhandle to the beach, it’s where I’m headed. Moving forward in life can be hard. I know I’m ready to tackle any challenge that comes my way.
So if you keep up with my blog, expect to see more California based posts and more advertising world things. See you again someday Texas.
Plug in the four banger, set the board on the chairs, plug in the dx cable, look up at the monitor and see it spiraling out control. “You have three minutes left” - says a name somewhere off in the room. My heart was pounding. My teammates look at me as I become whitewashed with stress. Yes, this is NSAC and this is our A/V rehearsal.
No the lights weren’t working. Who was in charge of setting them up? Oh yeah, me. When we were allowed a mere 15 minutes of A/V rehearsal the lights didn’t work. We went back to the hotel room, set everything up and they worked there. But, why not in the actual room?!
West Texas A&M University’s advertising team Buffalo Advertising was lucky enough to be selected as the wildcard team and make it to nationals with our awe inspiring light showcasing, soccer ball hitting, presentation and I was going to be responsible for making it fail.
We had traveled to Austin as excited as ever, meeting teams and being awestruck as we ran into #buffstahce (The University of Alabama) in the elevator - they were the team we ended up bonding the most with. Our competition was UCLA, College Station, Penn State, Syracuse, and other notable schools - so not exactly for the feint of heart. The first time a team from WT had mad it’s way to the national level for NSAC. We were a quarter horse among thoroughbreds.
I think the big thing for me about this convention and competition was how lucky and honored we felt to even be there. The networking opportunities were amazing. Naturally our competitive nature emerged and we began to wonder “what if.” What if the small wildcard team placed? What if we got first? What if?
When we walked into the presentation room and began our actual set up - the lights worked. Not only did they work, but there was a chandelier right above us that we pointed one at to reflect it tenfold, couldn’t have planned that any better. Our lines were slow for once. I hit my mark for once. We were great.
Our Q/A with the judges was mostly a compliment section with one question that was answered with great response. Holy Moly - those ‘what ifs’ became ‘when will we knows’. When the 1-4th place teams were announced and WT was not on that list (congrats to the University of Nebraska-Lincoln for first and our friends at Alabama for second) I literally turned and said “oh that just means we got fifth.”
Little did I know.
West Texas A&M Univ. received 5th in the nation. 5th out of 152 other teams that competed this year. What an incredible feeling that was. We all felt like we had just gotten first. We beat not only one, but BOTH teams that we lost to on the district level. We were proud. We were honored.
I can now leave WT and my last experience as a ‘student’ happy. Happy that NSAC has taught me more than I could ever imagine. More than I thought I would ever know. It stood out on my resume. It helped me get to where I am in my career. So thanks to my team, my coaches, my advisors, and everyone else that was involved because without the support and encouragement we wouldn’t be where we are today.
And as always, “Go Buffs!”