This is part of a series where we ask Grady College students to describe their summer internship experience.
Rodgers Townsend is an advertising agency located in St. Louis, Missouri. They work with clients as big as AT&T and State Farm to smaller clients such as Smoothie King and George Foreman. As my first internship and being new to the advertising career, I am learning a lot by getting exposure to everything around the agency. I am a lead on a social media project to help improve our clients’ social media presence and help research with both client requested and proactive campaigns for Spectrum brands and State Farm. I attend lots and lots of meetings both internally for our team and with clients to discuss the campaign process and update each other with what all is happening. Even though I am interning for the account management discipline, I am having many 1:1 meetings with people of different disciplines throughout the agency to get a feel for what their role is and how their day to day may differ from mine.
The agency itself is hybrid. Those who want to come into the office can, and those who aren’t comfortable can stay at home. All meetings are held online via Microsoft Teams, so those who aren’t available in-person can still be in on the calls. I personally like being remote because I didn’t have to relocate to a city I’ve never been before. I like being in the comfort of my own home and not having to worry about navigating a new city.
What is the biggest challenge you’ve faced so far?
The biggest challenge I’ve faced so far is learning to soak in any and everything. There is a lot of information floating around the agency because we have so many clients. I am sitting in on the behind the scenes of many campaigns and projects with different clients. My calendar is crammed everyday with numerous meetings, and it can be difficult to manage where I am with which client. I also have a lot of things to do hands on, so sometimes it’s hard to manage my time. Balance is key, and that’s something I’m still learning how to do!
What has been the biggest growth you’ve experienced so far?
I am currently on my 4th week of interning, and I can confidently say I know how my agency relates to each of its clients and how they work together. I know the roles and responsibilities of being an account manager and continuously learning the different roles of the agency. I like seeing the creative process from start to finish first hand and just being present in the “real world.”
What is your advice for other students looking to take on a similar role?
Take the leap of faith, and honestly just do it. Talk to people. There’s so many resources out there and other people readily available to help you with any and everything. No question is stupid. The world of advertising has the best environment, and that’s what drew me in from the start. Everyone is so genuine and kind and will be there for you no matter what. They want you to succeed. They want your creative juices. I love the collaborative nature of this field and how chill and laidback it is compared to a corporate job. It’s about teamwork and not about who has more power and gets to control what. Advertising is such a fun and unique job.
What lessons will you take back with you to Athens in the fall?
I have learned to be a soaking sponge. There will be a lot of information thrown at you, so take it all in. Take notes and ask questions when things aren’t familiar. No creative idea is wrong or bad, so share it. Working well in a group is a key characteristic, so all these things will come back with me to class in Athens in the fall.