New Orleans is rich in culture, cuisine and history but during the weekend of March 17, it was also rich in aspiring marketing professionals. This year the American Marketing Association celebrated 38 years of its international Collegiate Conference.
In March, UW- Milwaukee’s AMA chapter took 23 students to the international conference. During this two-day conference, students had the opportunity to sit in on conferences to grow their brand, expand their knowledge of the job market, compete in marketing competitions, network with employers and listen to well-established keynote speakers. These speakers included Peter Horst, the Chief Marketing Officer at The Hershey Company and Monica Skipper, Vice President of Brand Experience Marketing FedEx Services.
“This trip has opened me up to so many opportunities that I never thought I would have received while getting a degree here at UWM,” said UWM sophomore Jessica Thill.
The UW-Milwaukee AMA chapter members know how to work hard and have fun. On March 18, the group of 23 walked to Café Soule and had a group dinner to celebrate their AMA accomplishments such as having 100 paid members and being recognized by UWM as Outstanding Student Organization of the Year. On Saturday after their morning conferences, AMA members had the afternoon to explore the heart of New Orleans. Some went shopping and found a superb spot for a crawfish lunch, while others explored deeper into the history of New Orleans through ghost tours and explored French Quarter. AMA is more than this one exhilarating conference down south, it’s all of the events and hard work throughout the year that makes this conference worthwhile.
This group of young marketing professionals is advised by UWM Business Professor Janice Blankenburg. Throughout the semester, AMA President Marisa Novy and Vice President Samantha Langereis collaborate with a student executive board, to welcome professional guest speakers from Penske, Northwestern Mutual and GMR, to speak on the professional field of marketing. These 14 executive board members also coordinate fundraising events, socials and career growth opportunities.
One major opportunity AMA gives its members is AMAgency. Led by Steven Schrank, this group is responsible for creating marketing campaigns for companies throughout the year. Currently, they are brainstorming and coordinating campaigns for Relay for Life and Rock the Green – two local events coming up this summer.
According to their mission statement, AMA bridges the gap between education and experience through networking events, community involvement, and skill-advancing opportunities. Through the events the executive board brings to the UWM campus or through the international conference, members are given the opportunity to network and learn about their future careers. On the back of their conference t-shirts AMA members had, “The only thing standing between you and your dream is the AMA organization you’re not a part of.”