Above and Beyond

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Written By

Adam Aldridge

COB Study Abroad Program China

 

To start out the day we went and visited the Shanghai UPS international hub. During the visit it was interesting to learn that as large as UPS is in America, Government regulations have limited UPS to exporting and importing internationally, allowing for domestic carriers to operate inside China. I found the safety standards in the distribution center to be lacking behind U.S. OSHA standards. They did have several pro safety banners and a good lost time accident record.

Lunch was a very good meal for our last in Shanghai. There was a bun that you filled with beef and green beans to make a sort of Chinese taco. Towards the end of the meal, the restaurant went to McDonalds and presented us with French fries served on a plate. This gesture was very nice and completely unexpected. The meal was capped off with a plate of watermelon which has come to signify the end of the meal every time this trip.

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Boarding the high speed rail train to Nanjing was extremely exciting. The average speed of these trains are 280kph or 173mph. The first class compartment was very nice, large comfy seats and foot rests made the journey go by very quickly. The trip took us nearly two hours, yet looking out the window we never felt like we left the city. It was an endless sea of 20 story apartment buildings and manufacturing facilities. That really showed how huge China’s population is, as well as its booming economy.

An old saying is that you can always tell how good the economy is doing by how busy construction is. After being here a little over a week and traveling in 3 major cities, I have seen so many construction cranes erecting buildings into the sky. New buildings just completed ready for tenants to move in. The booming economy, with new factories and apartment buildings, will provide ample opportunities for the dilapidated areas.

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The city of Nanjing greeted us with a downpour of rain and a long, uncovered, walk to the bus from the train terminal. The traffic in Nanjing was relentless and by far the most crowded streets on the trip. This made the soaking wet trek to dinner and the hotel an even longer journey through the city.

Arrival at the Nanjing Grand Hotel was very pleasant. The entrance was luxurious with a grand piano playing in the back of the room and a fountain front and center. The rooms were interesting, especially the bathroom. The toilet had a bidet, heated seat, and a control panel to work all the features. The room was spacious and the beds were very comfortable. Further investigation of the hotels facilities we discovered a great looking workout room, and several restaurants. Unfortunately, the pool was closed until July which will be a sorely missed commodity as our group has used the pool and hot tub extensively at the previous hotels.

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Time To Reflect & Look Ahead

Happy Friday COB! I am sure everyone is welcoming the weekend after a long and stressful week of exams. As I have said in my posts the past few weeks I cannot believe how fast this semester has flown by. Although the initial shock has yet to wear off, it is still time to reflect on a great semester and a great internship.

Working with the College of Business this semester as a social media and advertising intern has been an incredible opportunity. I was responsible for my Friday blog posts and the COB Pinterest page, along with helping out with the COB Twitter and Facebook accounts. I also planned my very first marketing campaign, solo to promote the Spring 2014 Career Fair. This semester I gained and learned so much through my internship. I have expanded my experience in advertising and learned about different social media trends.  I have learned the true influence of social media in today’s society and how it is of the upmost importance to have a positive social media presence for your brand or company.  I also realize what is involved and the commitment needed in making a marketing campaign successful.

When I accepted the social media internship in December I never realized how much I would actually take away from it. I also had no idea how many doors it would open for me professionally. Like I have posted previously, I was able to accept a full time account management internship at the Dalton Agency in Atlanta GA for this summer.  An opportunity I do not think I would have been given if it were not for my time with the COB.  Now as exam week is in full swing and my senior year of college is on the horizon I am excited for the summer I have ahead of me. I cannot wait to move to Atlanta for the summer and experience a great city and gain even more knowledge about the advertising world.

Ready to spend my summer working in the heart of Midtown Atlanta.

Ready to spend my summer working in the heart of Midtown Atlanta.

I wish everyone luck on their exams this upcoming week! Stay strong and study hard and it will all pay off! I hope to be back blogging for “A Pirate’s Life” in August so stay tuned!

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Where Has The Time Gone?

Happy Friday COB! As the last full week of classes winds down I find myself exhausted and in disbelief. This week has absolutely been the hardest week of the semester for me. Group project meetings, final projects, and exams filled my week with a lot of stress so I am very thankful for the weekend right about now. However, I cannot believe that this year is almost over. I feel like I just got back to Greenville, being so excited to move all of my stuff into my new house in the “grid” with two of my best friends. I remember patiently waiting for the first football game and actually looking forward to the first day of the fall semester.

First game of the year! Cannot believe this was months ago!

First game of the year! Cannot believe this was months ago!

Now, almost nine months later I cannot believe another year of college has sped by. In a less than two weeks I am going to have to say goodbye to so many of my close friends after their graduation. I will soon be moving out of my house and into another closer to campus and then I will be off to Atlanta to start my internship. Then, in August I will officially start my senior year at East Carolina. How did the time go so fast? I do not feel old enough for this!

I can only imagine how it is going to feel this time next year when I am the one putting on that purple cap and gown, taking my last finals ever as an undergraduate, and moving out of Greenville to a new city where hopefully a job in advertising awaits me. Hopefully the time goes slowly!

Are you graduating in two weeks? Are you a junior and feeling the same as I am? Comment here and let me know how your feeling about the end of another year coming so quickly.

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Take A Break

Good morning everyone. Reporting in after a well needed vacation. I love taking a vacation, but I love coming home even more. I can adapt to new situations, but I sure do miss a routine and most importantly the gym. There are only so many amenities I can fit in my suitcase and the rest I have to leave at home. And because I usually have to drop the dog of at her grandma’s house, I really miss our dog.

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We stayed for four nights, and after day one without successfully finding a gym, I threw all my original plans out the window. I decided to take the weekend off the gym, and off of school, strictly relax. I’m sure that decision might make me work harder in the upcoming weeks but I think it was important for me to relax with everyone while I was there.

Without a plan, each day was a new adventure. We hit every West Marine in the surrounding area (thanks to my father-in-law), did shopping in downtown Charleston, and hit a few antique stores for Jordan. I’m a bigger internet shopper and save my money for workout gear, but that doesn’t mean I didn’t have a blast.

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Overall the weekend was a success. Beach house full of family, relaxation, games, and my wife. What more can a man ask for (other than our dog)? I like spending time with my family, but we have another fun filled vacation right around the corner. A week long adventure at a Sprint Cup NASCAR race in Charlotte Memorial Day weekend.

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Let the Countdown Begin!

Good Morning COB! As this week comes to a close all I can think about is how fast summer is approaching. With a little over a week left of classes, I cannot believe how fast this semester has flown by…. not that I am complaining! This semester has been my most difficult yet, so the relief I will feel when finishing that last exam will be unreal.

However before we can get to through all of those exams, we have to endure these last days of classes. To me, the last couple weeks of classes are always very stressful. Its like every professor has lost track of time and is trying to cram in all of those final tests, quizzes, and projects in before the end of the semester. The problem I face now is a serious lack of motivation to finish out strong. Is it possible to have senioritis this bad as a junior? It feels like I have been completely checked out of school and classes from even before spring break… this is problematic to say the least. How am I supposed to get through multiple tests and projects this week and then face the ever so brutal final exams?

The only thing keeping me going is that I see the light at the end of the tunnel. That beaming light is a summer internship in Atlanta and spending every weekend I possibly can road tripping to the beach!

How are you dealing with these last few weeks before summer? Are you ready for a your summer break? Comment here and fill the COB in!

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A Sigh of Relief

Happy Friday COB! This Friday I am breathing a sign of relief after getting some long awaited news. As you have heard throughout this semester, I have spent what feels like the majority of my time in the past few months searching for a summer internship. For a while I was beginning to think that I was not going to get anything and that id have to spend my summer in Raleigh doing nothing… but, this week I got the best news and felt like a giant weight was lifted off of my shoulders!

An advertising agency in Atlanta FINALLY called me back and offered me an account management intern position! They also happened to call on my birthday so it was an amazing week all in all! I could not be more grateful for finally getting some good news and for this incredible opportunity. I cannot wait to get to Atlanta and start working hard and get some real world experience in the advertising industry.

Cannot wait to spend the summer in Atlanta!

Cannot wait to spend the summer in Atlanta!

If this week has taught me one thing, it’s that hard work and persistence really does pay off. I have been working nonstop since January to lock in a position for this summer and I finally got an offer! Now I cannot wait to enjoy the rest of my junior year without having to worry about this summer; now all I have to worry about is the job hunt during my senior year… not looking forward to that at all!

Have you found your perfect summer internship yet? Comment and let me know!

 

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Finally Sunny and 75!

Happy Friday everyone and thank goodness it finally feels like spring! I was starting to think I would never experience what 75 degrees felt like again. I don’t think I have ever been more grateful to see a warm five-day forecast, and this is coming from a girl who loves the cold.

There was a different ambiance on campus this week, everyone looked much happier to have ditched their parkas for shorts and sandals. However making it to class this week was incredibly difficult since my mind was caught up in all the things I would rather be doing; anything related to sitting in the sunshine. Obviously the first week that its beautiful, I have a ridiculous amount of work to accomplish. Well…it was probably that same amount as any other week it just felt much worse since I was staring out the window and actually seeing the sun. So I was forced to sit in the library with the grueling torture of constantly checking social media seeing everyone’s pool and river pictures. Let me tell you I was not a happy camper.

Campus looking extra beautiful this morning.

So when I woke up this morning I could not wait to speed through my classes so I could finally get outside. I have a hot pink beach bike and an ENO hammock that is calling my name today! I hope everyone has a wonderful weekend enjoying this beautiful weather!

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Senior Registration

This past Tuesday marked a day that I never thought would come…registration for the fall of my senior year. To me becoming a senior in college always felt like this very far off event that would never actually happen. But, as I sat in my room on Tuesday morning still very sleepy and waiting on my 8am register time it all hit me like a train. Suddenly I found myself wondering has it really been three and a half years since I moved into Fletcher for my freshman year? Was that even possible? Where did the time go? It feels like it was about twenty minutes ago to me.

My first home game with my best friend Nikki. In complete disbelief this was over three years ago!

My first home game with my best friend Nikki. In complete disbelief this was over three years ago!

Granted it was nice to not have any problems getting in all the classes I needed, I finished at 8:03am. A record considering I have never had a registration experience that wasn’t filled with stress and anxiety. However, this time it was a different kind of stress and anxiety; it was a kind that was much, much worse. It was the realization that in just a year and a few short months, that I would officially be an adult. That I would then need to find a job, pay my own bills, find a place to live and, essentially grow up. The thought of all this change downright terrifies me. I don’t feel old enough for all of that; I’m not sure if I ever will.

I am sure I am not the only one who had thoughts like these this week, I’m not sure if any of us are ever REALLY ready to graduate and take on all of that extra responsibility. So, as the rest of my very stressful week went on I tried to be a little more thankful for all the things I normally complain about. Things like having to stay up late studying for tests, waking up early for class and, stressing about grades and group projects. I guess it won’t be long before all of us long for those days. So here’s hoping time slows down, because this girl just is not ready to leave Greenville.

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Spring Career Fair!

Thank goodness it’s Friday! The first week back after spring break is always difficult but this week was an all out struggle. I am sure I was not the only COB student stressed with multiple group projects and trying to get myself ready for the career fair.

With summer quickly approaching panic is beginning to set in because I have not yet accepted an internship. I felt that the career fair would be the perfect opportunity to get face to face with employers and hopefully make some good contacts. Unfortunately, not many of the companies that were in attendance offered summer internships and almost none were in marketing and advertising. On the upside it was really good to get more experience with making my pitch statement and speaking with employers.

Haley and I at the Career Fair!

Haley and I at the Career Fair!

Although I didn’t find any companies that were directly related to advertising, there were over 100 companies represented! Most of the companies I saw were construction and accounting related, however I did see a few retail chains represented as well. I also heard a lot of feedback from other students and everyone said that the companies had a lot of entry-level positions available and they were looking to hire students right after graduation!

I hope that if you attended that you had a great and successful experience speaking with employers! If you are confused or need pointers on what steps to take next, follow the ECU COB Pinterest boards for tips on thank you notes and follow ups!

http://www.pinterest.com/ecucob/

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NYC and ATL!

Happy Friday everyone! I cannot believe it is almost the end of spring break…why? Although I would’ve preferred to have been sunning myself all week on a beach, I still had a great break in New York City and Atlanta!

The first half of this week I spent it visiting my Dad in Manhattan (he was relocated there in January for work) and now I am in Atlanta until Sunday visiting a few friends. It was great to finally get a chance to visit my Dad and see his new apartment that’s located right in the center of the city in Midtown, such a great area! He is close to Grand Central Station, Central Park, 5th avenue shopping, and my favorite, Bloomingdales! My mom and I spent our time walking all over the concrete jungle, eating great food and shopping great sales! We spent a day exploring Soho and we also started our mornings with a run around Central Park through the Reservoir which is a 2 mile track with great views of the city.

Mom and I stopping for a photo in Central Park.

Mom and I stopping for a photo in Central Park.

Today I head off to Atlanta to hang out with friends for the weekend and go on two interviews with advertising agencies in the area. As you may have read previously, I have been on the hunt for the perfect summer internship in advertising so it was great to be contacted for interviews! Hopefully this trip is fun and ends in an opportunity for the summer!

I hope everyone has a great rest of their break and has a safe trip back to Greenville, wherever you may be. Here’s hoping the next few days move as slowly as possible!

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