Whether you’re far past it, going through it, or dreading it, the post-grad job search can be daunting. I managed to initially avoid it altogether: After graduating in 2013, I moved to Spain to teach English for a year. Because, well, what else does one do with a degree in English and Spanish?
As millennials, many of my friends and I had a vision of a “real world” where everyone contributes to society by wearing matching pantsuits and entering boxes where they sit in smaller boxes and stare at electronic boxes and slowly lose their minds. We rejected this, refusing to be boxed-in. Adventurists, tree huggers, hipsters – whatever we are, one thing we certainly are not is “inside the box” type of people.
So, my fellow millennials – if you would, kindly, descend from the cloud for just a moment. I’d like to tell you about an industry worth considering. One that we interact with almost constantly, wherein I found a “real” job that exists utterly outside the box: Digital Advertising.
We are the digital revolutionists; the introduction to the World Wide Web was simply a starting point. We’ve grown out of the middle school Myspace platform and on to bigger and better things: from mobile phones and tablets to Fit Bits and Google Glass. New mediums are constantly being developed and delivered to whichever device we have metaphorically glued to our person. Ever since the very young age at which we learned how to “sign on” we have served as subjects to one, long usability test, helping to create the foundation for consumer-based technology.
In advertising, we find ways to communicate with an audience. In today’s world of posts, snaps, tweets and grams, the communication is digitized, mobilized and globalized. The connection is constant. Even our social life has gone digital; we’re the “Notification Generation.” Constant connectivity and communication is our comfort zone. We have the various forms of modern media quite literally in our back pocket. A job in advertising allows you to use this expertise in helping clients spread brand awareness through the latest and greatest online platforms. The industry is relevant, it’s inventive, and it’s fun. The question now is, what route will you take? And the beautiful answer is: whichever you choose.
The digital advertising industry’s not just for marketing majors and computer engineers. Those are a given. We’ve got artists, thespians, creative writers and journalists, videographers and photographers and everything in-between. Frankly, your major doesn’t matter. What matters is what you do with it. You know what you’re good at, now find a way to prove it – make a blog, a portfolio, or a reel. Help build the site for your university’s hula-hoop club. These are the days of Wix, WordPress and start-ups – endless opportunities for experience await, right in the oh-so-familiar Google search bar.
In my account services position at WHITE64, I’m technically not in a creative role, yet my creativity is constantly inspired. I sit in a cubicle, yet feel far from trapped in a box. No matter the role you’re playing, the show is continuously entertaining and never monotonous. The days are fast-paced and high-energy and the work is visionary and imaginative. There is a flexible atmosphere likely to appeal to any Gen Y stereotype; you can be a powerful professional who looks great in a pantsuit and channel your inner Silicon Valley genius in jeans and a t-shirt.
To anyone else who was led to believe a degree in English and Spanish won’t land you anywhere but in front of a classroom; to those millennials who believe that there is no place in the proverbial real world that inspires the creative mind and adheres to the adventurous spirit, I wanted to share my story, to tell of the place I found here at WHITE64.
Stop being afraid of the real world. Join it and do something digital. We’ve spent most of our lives looking through varying dimensions of a glowing screen. Now is our chance to control what we see.
Author: Mary Kate Gough
Date: March 11, 2015