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It all began with Mad Men

It all began a few years ago when I watched Mad Men for the first time. I was hooked (no, not on John Hamm), but on advertising, I couldn’t stop imagining myself as the next Peggy Olson. I got to Washington and Lee University in 2014 thinking I would pursue business, because of my passion for advertising. Instead, my interests lead me to a double major in Studio Art and Anthropology. Art allows me to strengthen my creative and design skills while anthropology improves my writing and research skills while satisfying my desire to analyze different cultures. Extracurricularly, studio art and dance are ingrained into my daily life, but the role that they play in my life has evolved over time– from dancer to choreographer, and painter to advocate for other student artists. This year, I became the Co-President of Washington and Lee’s Dance Company as well as the President of the University’s Student Arts League. My Arts League projects require self- motivation; constant communication with administrators, students, and the Lexington community; and an ability to finish one project while dreaming up the next. Last semester, I had a vision to install student artwork into our new housing facility and worked my proposal all the way up to the University's provost; it was finally approved and 4 months later, the art was installed. It took persistence, communication on many different ends, and an ability to inspire enthusiasm in others. I have used my leadership within the arts to shake-up our somewhat unimaginative community, and have successfully used the power of the arts to bring people together. Marketing is another art form that gives us the potential to influence others, dramatically change the marketplace, and with today’s technology, can make a huge impact in a small amount of time– that is what inspires me to pursue a career in the field.

Over the years, I have accumulated new skills and experiences in the advertising field. During the past two summers, I have worked as a freelance designer for Joyner Fine Properties; strengthened social media and designed a promotional video for Mental Health America of Virginia; and researched the cultural specificity of advertising in Italy. This semester, I was chosen to be the Creative Director of our Advertising Class which will pitch a new strategy for Tai Pei Frozen Foods at the National Student Advertising Competition in the spring. My work as creative director includes research on creative trends, developing tonal videos, searching for fonts, writing Twitter posts, and many other skills. After pitching many ideas to the class, I have developed not only the ability to present my thoughts in a clear manor, but to accept criticism without offense, and move forward in a different (and often, better) direction. The picture above is part of our final strategy for Tai Pei Frozen foods.

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