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Reflecting on my Emerging Leaders Internship with Avenue

During my Emerging Leaders Internship (ELI) with Avenue I was able to gain lots of insight on what working at a digital marketing agency looked like. As an incoming third year student, I am still exploring and learning about potential career paths that I can pursue. Having the opportunity to intern at Avenue this summer has opened a lot of doors for me and introduced me to many new skills and career paths.

What I learned at Avenue

Coming into my Digital Marketing Internship with Avenue, I have had some previous experience with social media marketing and was mainly familiar with creating content and copywriting. But after being with Avenue for the past 10 weeks, I was able to learn much more about the digital marketing industry. During my internship with Avenue, I was given the opportunity to assist on the day-to-day execution of client marketing efforts across Avenue’s three core service pillars: Paid Advertising, Search Engine Optimization (SEO) and organic Social Media content creation. Being able to grow my skills within these three core service pillars has helped me find new areas of interest and discover potential future career opportunities. Along with growing my knowledge and skills in different sectors of digital marketing, Reed Emerson, Audrey Weatherhead and Jazmyne Hudson have helped me apply this knowledge by allowing me to support the production of client strategy deliverables, campaign documents and daily pacing for client ad accounts. I also gained valuable professional workplace experience through participating in select client meetings, calls and strategic planning sessions.

On top of all the amazing professional development and career opportunities I was provided with at Avenue, I was also able to participate in discussions and conversations from our anti-racism meetings around digital biases, dismantling white supremacy, trans representation in the media and the concept of covering. These conversations and discussions were really impactful and taught me to not be afraid to speak my truth in the workplace. I am really thankful for Anna Madill for leading by example and being the change that she wants to see. Anna has been a truly inspiring leader to look up to and has made Avenue a safe space for the team to have open and vulnerable discussions. Working with Avenue made me realize that I want to continue working with companies and organizations that take the time and effort to encourage conversations about race and wellness. One of the main reasons I wanted to join the Avenue team was because of Avenue’s purpose to partner with clients who embody their values for creating global impact and commitment to diversity; and it’s definitely safe to say that the Avenue team has done an amazing job at creating a collaborative, friendly and inclusive workspace that embodies these values.

What I gained as an Emerging Leaders Intern

All students in the Emerging Leaders Internship (ELI) Program must complete Professional Development workshop training sessions organized by the Emerging Leaders Program. After each workout we are given a prompt question to answer, these questions usually make us really reflect on our own personal experiences as diverse students preparing to enter the workforce while also allowing us to recognize our own value and self worth. One of the workshop sessions we had that resonated with me was a workshop about “Building Self Confidence in the Workplace”. During this workshop, led by Katrina Gonzalez Yuen, the topics that were covered included: Recognizing your strengths and utilizing them in the workplace, Developing a strategy for asking for what you need in the workplace and Understanding the importance of constructive feedback. As someone who grew up very shy and introverted and is starting to work at entry level positions, sometimes it can be difficult or uncomfortable to speak up and advocate for myself. But getting to participate in this workshop’s exercises and answering reflective questions about the prompts taught me to take pride in my strength and skills and not be afraid to take up space.

Along with all the amazing professional development opportunities, ELI has introduced me to a supportive community of driven individuals I was able to create meaningful connections with. Last week ELI hosted a final end of internship virtual event to celebrate all of the ELI Interns from the 2021 cohort! This event was later followed by a virtual networking event which allowed ELI interns to speak with a variety of professionals from different industries based in Portland. Prior to the networking event, the ELI program required all of the ELI interns to prepare an elevator pitch and have it practiced and memorized before the networking event. Our elevator pitches are meant to reflect our areas of interest, strengths and future aspirations. When we were put into break out rooms with other ELI interns and professionals, all the ELI interns had to share their elevator pitch. Listening to everyone’s elevator pitches was super fun and inspiring, the best part was how we were all able to celebrate each other's accomplishments.

Next Steps and Future Plans

As I prepare to go back for my third year of college at the University of Oregon, I will be continuing to pursue my Bachelor of Arts in Business Administration with a concentration in Marketing. I recently got a job working with the University of Oregon Communications Department Student Team as a Digital and Social Media Strategist for the University of Oregon’s social media accounts. With this new job, I am excited to continue building my skills in digital and social media marketing by applying everything I learned during my internship at Avenue. For my career goals, I am hoping that I can continue advocating for social justice, sustainability and creating more representation through media and marketing by working with companies that embody these values.

I am beyond grateful for the Emerging Leaders Internship Program and Avenue for believing in me and giving me an amazing first internship experience. I can’t wait to see all the amazing things Avenue and the team continue to accomplish throughout the years!

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