Being a freshman in college I am constantly surrounded by information: newspaper articles, lectures, textbook pages and word of mouth. But in this sea of information, how much information actually means something? Right now I plan on majoring in marketing and I find myself surprised by how different learning something in class and experiencing something hands on can feel. I came into college hoping that I would be able to find out what I’m really meant to do, but so many times I feel like I’m wasting my time in school. Almost always I find myself sitting in class and thinking about how much of this information means something. When signing up for classes, I’ve always wanted the harder professor, even at the expense of my grade and time. Now as I work as a marketing intern for Kevin Davis productions and I find myself surprised by how different marketing is from learning about marking in a textbook. This is the difference between looking at theories bound within a book, and using these same theories.
I first found out about this internship opportunity from a friend of mine and I find it absolutely crazy. I am currently working on promoting a Christian musical that will be on the Broadway district. The musical is called “The Ticket” and is centered on a group of Christians who win the lottery and how this impacts them. Not only am I able to use so many things I’ve learned in school, but I’m helping a ministry in a way too. I’ve always felt like going in business (one passion of mine) would prevent me from going into another (ministry), but it doesn’t always have to be that way.
Deciding to go to college wasn’t really a decision for me, as I immediately knew from a young age that this would be the path I would follow. But without realizing it I signed off the next 4 or potentially more (graduate school?) years of my life to lectures, papers and examinations. And so many times I find myself wanting to take the easy way out with easy professors, and just get out. But I also worry about how much I actually lose in doing this. I may be able to graduate with a decent degree and look for a job, but what does this piece of paper saying I learn something mean if I learned nothing?
The first thing that felt really weird to me was that doing work felt really fun. I always associated work with pain and the idea of having fun at work seemed a little off. And I mean fun by the fact that when I was sitting in on a seminar about “Social Media”, I was almost in a trance. This is how the world around us connects and I can be a part of this equation in one-way or form. This wasn’t like my Business 1000 lecture Friday mornings where I learned that the quality of the product must always meet the expectations via a clipart image of baby crying on a slideshow. What I’m doing right now isn’t imaginary or pretend and its weird to come to grips with the idea that it will soon be tangible. Somehow doing something in real life instead of simulating doing something motivates me so much more.
I remember also feeling weird because I’m so used to using Facebook, Twitter and Instagram in one particular way, my personal social media. It feels like a bird’s eye view approaching the same situation but as a marketer. For one thing, I had no idea how many tools websites like Facebook have for companies. You know how many visits you get, what posts are well received and the demographics of your audience. All these things I never even knew was able for me to see as a Marketer prior to working as an intern. I always looked at Facebook as this major time suck on all my time, never realizing how often I am marketed to. I love the idea that I can be starting up a Facebook page for “The Ticket” and having my friends telling me to get off Facebook and do my work, not realizing I’m actually doing it.
This other part of my feels really afraid and apprehensive because taking what I’ve learned and using it in practice is scary. I’m used to typing notes on my MacBook on my tiny table in a lecture hall. I’m not used to actually implementing the processes I’ve learned about and seeing what works and what really doesn’t. But at the same time I can’t wait to create a plan for something I’m passionate about, like “The Ticket”, and know my time is being used well. Over the course of the next few months I will transition from a regular student to a commuter student and start doing something that I love. I’m doing something important and I love it.