Dear college students,
When I attend college career fairs to look for potential applicants to our summer internship program, my heart hurts for you. It’s evident that you’ve been thrown into classes you probably have no interest in. Shortly thereafter, you’re told to choose a major and then repeatedly asked what you want to do when you graduate. How are you really supposed to know that? You’re probably broke, so you take any job that comes your way with little thought to how it might shape your future job opportunities. Colleges are beginning to recognize this gap (some more quickly than others), and classrooms are evolving to include more experiential learning. That will take time, though. In the meantime, you have to choose a major and figure out what you want to do when you graduate. Here’s my recommendation.
I was lucky. Despite graduating with no idea what I wanted to do, I ended up with a fantastic career in advertising, completely by accident. I love what I do, but I’ve seen many young professionals come into this industry only to realize they want to be a nurse, teacher, or something completely unrelated to advertising and marketing. They had no idea if a career in advertising was a good fit for them and couldn’t know for sure until they tried it. So, how do you get advertising experience that isn’t just paper pushing and running errands? The MBB+ Fast Track program is a summer internship unlike any other among Kansas City agencies.
We conduct interviews and select a small team of juniors and seniors from various area schools. You don’t necessarily have to have agency experience but that’s the point of an advertising and marketing internship, right? We look for students with various levels of work experience who are bright, driven, well spoken, professional, organized and who demonstrate initiative and passion for marketing and advertising.
For ten weeks, you work together as a team, which provides a realistic portrayal of what it’s like to work at an ad agency. The MBB+ Fast Track team receives mentorship and coaching from account service all the way to creative execution, which enables the team to take on the challenge of developing a marketing campaign for a real MBB+ client. So what does that actually look like?
This year’s Fast Track team members, appropriately named Animal House Agency, are developing a national, fully integrated campaign for Black Cat Fireworks. I think they would all agree that it’s been a blast (pun intended) to fully immerse themselves in the pyrotechnics industry.
They’ve done quite impressive work thus far—from conducting an initial research survey to defining the opportunity, finessing a strong campaign brief, and even creating visual mood boards. The summer advertising internship will culminate with an intern one presentation to the senior management team at MBB and one to the client, who will evaluate the work and provide feedback.
The goal of the Fast Track internship is just that, to help Fast Track students’ advertising careers progress and to help them enter to the real world just a little more prepared. We hope the experience gives you a clearer understanding of what everyday work is like, and ultimately, what role in advertising or marketing you may wish to pursue once you graduate. It’s not all about choosing a major … it’s what you decide to do with it, and the options are pretty limitless. Our hope for you is that you don’t fall into a career by accident and flail around trying to figure out what you really love to do. Fast Track will give you the tools, knowledge and resources to intentionally define your path and fast track your career.