By: Veronica Mosquera
Wednesday’s, 7 PM. Classroom to be determined, creativity guaranteed. I walk into a meeting where ideas are celebrated and conversation flows freely. Most importantly, I leave knowing more than I did before.
I joined On the House (OTH) Creative Agency in Fall 2014. OTH is a student-run agency through the Illinois American Advertising Federation (AAF) that provides advertising and graphic design services for non-profit organizations, start-up companies, and registered student organizations on campus. There are opportunities to interact with clients in real, agency-like settings. With the option to try copywriting, creative tools and account strategy, students are exposed to a taste for different parts of the industry.
Even as a senior, I admit that finding interests – and the time to entertain them – is not always easy. When people ask advertising students what they do, it is typically assumed that it is commercials. I initially came into advertising with a creative goal. However, after taking classes, joining the American Advertising Federation and going to agency presentations, I learned about the different sides of the business – yet I still was not quite sure what I really liked.
I delved into different clubs for a while, such as writing for the Daily Illini and joining Event Planning for AAF. But as the time came closer to apply for jobs post-graduation, I wanted to keep exploring with the ultimate goal of solidifying a main area.
Things were different with OTH. Instead of scrambling to know everything at once, this club made me want to learn about what drew me into this field in the first place. I registered as an account manager because it was the side that I knew the least about. As the agency-client liaison of the group, I meet with new clients assigned to the team, determine client needs through client request forms, and relay the information to the team. I have found the constant communication, as well as watching a project come together, to be satisfying. It has been helpful to watch how the other positions work as well.
Further than the knowledge imparted on me through this club, being in a positive environment has enriched my last year of college. I continue to learn that there is always time to explore different mindsets and meet dynamic people. As I establish options for the future – perhaps as an account manager – hopefully it will mirror the positive surroundings I have encountered in OTH.