A Glimpse Into Reality

by Stone Ward Staff

Reality is defined as the state of things as they actually exist, as opposed to an idealistic or notional idea of them.

Work full-time, take nine hours of summer class, visit nine states, follow a college sports workout plan, rehab a torn ligament, plan two major events and stay on top of everything else that life throws at you. That's an easy summer, right? 

As a brand management intern in Stone Ward’s “Camp Reality” program, each day was challenging in its own way. My first day on the job required coming in by myself at 4:30 in the morning. I thought, “what am I getting myself into?” Eight weeks later, I can answer that question. 

I learned basic skills like writing marketing plans and creative briefs. I oversaw a digital advertising campaign from conception to completion. I observed the filming of three national television commercials. I got to experience the acquisition of a new client and the strategic development in building their brand. I got to prepare a Fortune 500 CEO for a national television appearance. I worked through the nitty-gritty of cooperative billing and competitive research. Above all, I experienced the dynamics of working in a corporate culture with as many different personalities as there were employees. For all of this, I am thankful. 

Millie and Larry, thank you for building a company and a program that allows students like myself to dip their toes in “the real world.” Lucie, thank you for taking the time to interview me and give me a chance to work at Stone Ward. Lauren and Mary Read, thank you for taking me in and showing me the ropes of Brand Management. I can sincerely say I learned something new every day, and I have you two to thank for that. Alix, thank you for organizing the Camp Reality intern program and easing our transition into the company. Last but certainly not least, I want to thank Coach Andy Schatzley, my assistant baseball coach at Harding. Thanks to him, I feel like I can do anything. 

Reality doesn’t have to be boring. Reality doesn’t have to punch a clock. Reality doesn’t have to make coffee, it can make a difference. This summer, I was inspired to do just that: make a difference. To everyone at Stone Ward, thank you for the opportunity!