A 3:30 a.m. alarm woke me from my half-sleep and I stumbled out of bed, turned on my coffee pot and began my day.
I was on campus by 5 a.m. Friday morning to board a bus to New York City (NYC) for a career tour of Condé Nast (home of Teen Vogue) and of Orion Worldwide, both companies headed by Keene State College alumni.
This event was put together by Sara Barrett, who is part of the Alumni Relations for KSC.
A total of 32 communication, management and journalism students took part in the trip and were able to ask questions and be a part of the excitement for the afternoon.
According to an e-mail sent by Barrett, career tours “connect faculty and student groups with successful alumni who are willing to host a career tour of their company to provide students with exposure to a range of occupations, companies and industries; to share their career path and career expertise; and to create informal networking opportunities with alumni and students.”
The ride to the city was stuffy, rainy and I was in and out of sleep for those six hours confined to the inside of a bus.
When we finally arrived at our first destination, a tour of Teen Vogue at One World Trade Center, the rain was coming down, we hustled for two blocks and went through the tough security to finally make it in.
When we arrived, we were greeted by Mary Leonard, the assistant to KSC alumna from Class of 1997 Amy Oelkers, who is Head of Revenue at Teen Vogue.
We were taken to the conference room, where there were piles of New York bagels and a glorious view of the city, where we could spot the yellow taxi cabs lining the streets of NYC.
Here, we were able to hear different stories about Oelker’s experiences when she was at KSC and learn a little bit about how candidates are chosen to be part of the Teen Vogue company.
After this, we got a tour of the fashion rooms and were taken to the 64th floor of One World Trade Center, where we could see a 360 degree view of the city.
It was here that I decided I would definitely be able to live in a city of that caliber; the hustle and bustle of cities excite me anyway.
I was even able to get some face time with Oelkers and talk about what her favorite part of working at Teen Vogue and working in NYC.
“My favorite part of New York is just the city and the difference of it every day, nothing is the same. My favorite part about Teen Vogue is what we stand for, standing for the next generation of strong girls, women, feminists who are going to have a seat at the table, and it’s completely bad-ass,” Oelkers said.
Oelkers really hit the nail on the head with that one.
The next stop in NYC was Orion Worldwide, which is headed by class of 1984, Brian McMahon.
McMahon is the Chief Executive Officer of Orion Worldwide and he gave some helpful hints to the students on the trip about following our dreams.
His number one tip? “Be unafraid.”
Mary Curtin can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org