All over campus, students are bundling up in boots and scarves to shield themselves from the cold fall winds. October brought a sudden drop in temperatures, and it truly feels like fall is here. October also brought the advertising cohort to New York City for the advertising benchmark trip.
The advertising students had the opportunity to go to down to New York City and visit three advertising agencies to see what our futures hold. We’re all new at this, and even though we have spent the last five months learning what advertising is, it was a great opportunity to ask questions to people in the industry. In the morning, half the class visisted J. Walter Thompson while the other half spent our time at TBWA Worldwide. Our experiences were different, since each agency has its own character and culture, but we all left feeling distinctly more at ease.
Shambhavi Rai, a graduate student studying advertising, said, “The agency tours helped dispel the nervousness that I felt about getting my first break into the industry. It reminded me how exciting the work is. It reminded me of the reason I chose advertising as a career.”
We all converged at MEC, another agency, for lunch and finished our whirlwind day at Y&R. Even though we spent the day strutting the streets of Manhattan in the pouring rain, the rooftop terrace at Y&R was a huge hit. Overlooking Columbus Circle and consequently Central Park, the rooftop terrace captured something that felt quintessentially New York. We all bubbled with genuine excitement as we posed for a group picture against a backdrop of Manhattan skyscrapers and surprisingly still green and lush maple, oak and elm trees. Nidhi Shetty, a graduate student studying advertising, learnt that, “Everybody has to go through a trial and error period, you can’t skip that. The speakers described their careers and showed that being in the industry requires dedication and you have to show you’re committed.”
At each agency, we were greeted with open arms in the form of a Newhouse graduate. As a Canadian in Syracuse, I’ve fielded the question why I chose Syracuse many times. I always specify that I chose Newhouse, a school with a great reputation, network and professors. In the last few weeks, I’ve had the opportunity to experience the Newhouse Network in a very tangible way. I attended the Fall Digital Panel on Snapchat (which had its own Snapchat filter!) and heard from professionals working at National Geographic, The 88 and an alumna at Allure. A few weeks later, I had the privilege to attend a casual, intimate lunch with Brian Benedick a VP at Spotify who is also a Syracuse alumnus. The following week, I started my morning listening to alumni from The Newhouse 44 give us advice about future-proofing our careers. Later that morning, Jon Cook CEO of VML, spoke casually and candidly about his career to my sixteen person advertising class. Jon Cook isn’t a Syracuse alumnus but he represents the caliber of individuals that are drawn to the Newhouse name and reputation.
So far, being at Newhouse has been an unexpected adventure. I am constantly and consistently excited by the people I get to meet and the ways I get to learn. The Newhouse Network is like an extended family, I may not have met all of them yet but when I do it’s like a family reunion.
–Neema Amadala is a graduate student studying advertising