Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Year End Frenzy Pt. 2

And the time has come again...another year of college ending. And once again, I let reading days just slip by without barely cracking a book to study. I get a few free days and suddenly I can't help but schedule stuff to fill the free space. Busy as usual. Good news though, I got an internship with WaterFire the summer. I'm super excited about it. I'll be working with 2 JWU alums, and one of them being a former Ad team member too. But before any of that happens I still need to do so much and travel so much. Needless to say, I will be quite the traveler by the middle of June.

This past long weekend was filled with activities of course. I had the chance to network with administrators, share my student experience with University Admissions Marketing, retreat with the new executive board for UIB, go shopping at the outlets, work at Future Affairs Productions, and socialize with the UIB/sailing gang as well as the SES/PLC crew. Not very much packing got done...

I am so pumped for finals to be over so I can focus on what really needs to get done. I need to get my life straightened out before leaving for Sweden on Sunday. That's right, I'm leaving for Sweden this Sunday. That means I should have a job lined out, my apartment partially ready to live in, and prepare for an international trip with a national advertising competition to follow.

Lots to do, but I am surprisingly calm about all of it. Maybe too calm? Regardless, it always gets done in the end. Wish me luck on this week!

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Year End Frenzy

Gosh, I can't believe that we are already well into the month of May. Funny  how time never moves at the speed you want it to, it either moves to fast or too slow. Something feels like it's either yesterday or forever ago. But one thing is true, I am about 2/3 finished with my college degree, it's crazy because I was technically a freshman last year. 3 years is short, but I'm sure 4 years fly by as well.

The academic year is wrapping up nicely. Stress level is pretty normal. I am taking things one day at a time and making most of every moment. A forte of mine is definitely my ability to focus one day at a time without losing sight of the future. People are always trying to find a balance, because you cannot always just live in the moment, but you cannot only focus on the future without ignoring the present. I have lots of exciting things about to happen in the next few weeks that my mind just cannot even process right now. Once I finish up all of my school work and pack up my apartment, I will be jet setting to Sweden for a week, then heading to San Diego, CA with the Ad Team to compete in nationals.

In the mean time, I am scurrying around trying to find something useful to do for the rest of the summer. I am determined to find some really awesome experiences this summer, especially one that pays. I have a place to live, I just need a job or internship. The worst part about the situation was that a few weeks ago, I was struggling to chose between more than one opportunity, and now I am left with none. Hopefully it is all a crazy coincidence that will lead me to an awesome opportunity. The last minute notice may either work in my favor or not. Smaller start ups may be just realizing now that it may be nice to have an intern. I sent my resume to about 12 different opportunities in Boston I found on Craigslist (which is always a toss up). I also sent my resume to Waterfire Providence for their marketing and development internship, it's unpaid, but I don't have to receive class credit and it looks like a great internship. I will be meeting with them this Thursday to discuss further. Now if only the others would get back to me. A handful of the positions I applied for were social media positions. I like to think I am pretty well versed with social media, but there is so much more I want to learn! It is an awesome tool, and still quite mysterious. Businesses may not fully understand what it is and what it can do but they know they have to have it.

Just a few things bouncing around my head, until next time....


Sunday, May 8, 2011

Happy Mother's Day

My mother and I have had an interesting relationship throughout my life. I think most first generation Chinese girls have a hard time with their mothers and their parenting style in comparison to their American friends. The different parenting style compounded with her working and a lot and me either taking care of myself or hanging out with other people's families made it even more of a difficult relationship. 

She had to sacrifice time with me to support me. Today in church, we watched this cute video narrated by little kids answering questions about their mom. It ended with the question "What is your favorite thing about your mom?" All of the little kids say things like how she plays with me, kisses my boo-boos, cuddles with me, etc. The video hit a heart-string with the whole congregation including me. Even though I don't remember my mom doing all those things with me, I still know she loves me and I am special to her. She just shows it differently. She was a single mom for most of my life and was able to give me everything I ever wanted. While she didn't understand why I did all of the extra things  besides school, she paid for them and let me do whatever I wanted with my life. She let me move all the way to Rhode Island to go to my dream school. 

So these are my favorite things about my mom, she is...
  • Strong
  • Generous
  • Hard working
  • Smart
  • Unconventional
  • Practical
  • Her "Can do" attitude
  • Obsessed with her little dogs
  • Shows love by giving
As I have gotten older and moved far away from home, I have been able to appreciate her more and more every day. She never told me the things I wanted to hear. She never let me feel satisfied, there is always room for improvement. You can always study more, work harder, and achieve more. My mom is the strongest person I know. I joke about her a lot, but I really admire her. While she is a very small and intimidating woman, she has the biggest heart and is so giving. And the more and more I learn about leadership, the more I realize how great of a leader she is. She owns the restaurant and does the majority of the cooking in the kitchen. She spends well over 40 hours a week in that restaurant and manages to keep up her home and garden and still finds time and enjoyment to cook and entertain guests on the weekends and major holidays. Not to mention, she barely needs any sleep and is an expert power napper. She never gets sick and is in peak health condition. 

Also, the older I have gotten, I realize that I have many Shirley tendencies. I can't name them off the top of my head, but they are there. And I am okay with it. She never ceases to amaze me. I owe her so much. 

Happy Mothers Day, Mom.


Thursday, May 5, 2011


Part two of my past weekend consisted of me working the Wildcat Wahoo Concert Sunday. You know me, I never get to take a breather, I'm always somewhere doing something. Last year's Wahoo Concert, I was the Artist Hospitality Chair meaning that I was in charge of getting everything (except the booze) on the artist's contract riders. Last year we had a number of acts like 3Oh3, Cobra Starship, Travie McCoy, and I Fight Dragons. This year we had Snoop Dogg. This year, since I am the vice-president of UIB, it was implied that I be in charge of the concert in some capacity but I did not really have a title.

It's a really awesome opportunity to be a part of the production of a major concert and an opportunity that only comes to someone my age through my involvement in the programming board. The day of the a major event is never as hectic as you anticipate it to be. Besides the talent being late, everything else went very smoothly throughout the day. Since I had no real responsibilities during the day, I declared myself the social media manager for Wahoo. My job was to make our Facebook fans and Twitter followers feel like they were there with us setting up for the concert from the comfort of their dorm room. Throughout the day, I sent out live tweets and posted pictures of the progress of the set up of the event and the goal was to get #wahoo11 trending. Unfortunately, JWU hasn't really jumped on the Twitter train yet, they don't really get it. My side job was to be the runner, so if anyone needed to get something off campus, I would go. My first errand was to pick up lunch for the volunteers from the Subway in Narragansett, RI (about 30 minutes away) not the one off Narragansett Blvd (across the street from Harborside campus). Then I was sent on a mysterious errand to the ATM from Snoop's manager to withdraw the maximum amount of cash. And then I picked up dinner for the volunteers from Chipotle.
*side-note* My one complaint about Chipotle is that the online ordering process makes no sense for trying to order for a large amount of people. They offer many options, but none that were very feasible for me. You can either place individual orders online, fax in a burrito by the box order, or do a group order by sending out email requests for everyone to fill their order. For one, I was not going to sit and make 40 individual burrito orders, second, I did not have access to a fax machine, and third, there was no way I could send out an email to every volunteer so they can fill out their own individual burrito order. Because of this I had to call the store and make a very large and complicated order to a woman who was very busy and did not speak english very well. Chipotle, why can't it be easier to make large orders online??

Due to the nature of the artist and the show, we were forced to open doors an hour late. This caused some problems, especially when the crowd boo'd the opener off the stage before Snoop Dogg had even arrived. This forced the crowd to have to wait in the gym for an extended amount of time, and there was no re-entry so the attendees were trapped essentially. Finally Snoop arrived around 7PM when he was technically supposed to arrive at 10AM. He literally came in through the back door, picked out a pair of sunglasses, and walked on stage to perform. It would naive to assume there would be zero drug use at a Snoop Dogg concert, but I had no idea the students would hot box the gym. If started off with a few clouds of smoke here and there in the crowd then eventually the whole gym was filled with smoke. Interesting experience...
After the show a select few of us got the chance to meet Snoop Dogg himself. Also interesting.... I wouldn't say I'm one to be starstruck, but I had no idea what to say to the man, especially since I'm not like a crazy fan. It didn't seem like real life that Snoop Dogg was in the room that we hold UIB meetings in weekly.

Despite the elements that we beyond our control, it was a great event. The show was followed by a long night breaking down and loading out the stage, sound, and lighting equipment. Lots of heavy lifting, but since the Carnival and Concert were split into separate days this year, we got home earlier than we would have if it were all one day. All and all, great experience. Does is make me want to get into the music business though? Not anymore.

Until next time...


Monday, May 2, 2011


My posts have been about my balance between Ad Team and UIB lately, and I have just about reached the end of this saga. I have decided to split up the posts because I just made it through the biggest weekend of my life. For the past 2 months, I have worked tirelessly alongside my fellow ad team members as well as my 3 fabulous professors on the National Student Advertising Competition Case for JCPenney. We have spent every minute of free time during the week and every hour of the weekend in the ad lab working on this campaign for JCPenney, and it all paid off this past Saturday in Boston at Hill Holliday during the NSAC District 1 Competition. In order to accomplish this, I had to make sacrifices. I could not be there for my fellow UIB members during Spring Week or Wildcat Wahoo Carnival. I could not mentally wrap my head around other school work, or my other involvements, and I wasn't a very good employee during this time.

Countless presentation run-throughs and 5 presentations to classes, alumni, and administration later, we were ready! We left Providence for Boston Friday afternoon. The school was kind enough to put us up in a hotel and feed us a nice dinner the day before the competition. After dinner, we did a quick practice run-through and went to bed early (at least the presentation team). Saturday I woke up feeling great! Never in my life, had I ever been 100% prepared for anything until this. We all walked to Hill Holliday together (one of the largest ad agencies in New England). Everyone was in such a good mood, minimal nerves, and great vibes all around. The Hill Holliday office was amazing, located in the center of Downtown Boston on the 35th floor, the office has the best view of the city. We delivered the BEST presentation we had ever done, we had fun with it, and we engaged the audience as well as the judges. In the Q&A, the judges had nothing but praise and suggestions for the next time we deliver this presentation. Our biggest rivals Boston University and Emerson College went on back to back after lunch, their presentations were shiny and used emotional appeals to reach the target, very different from our campaign. Once the time came to announce the winners, the AAF had a bright idea to announce the top 4 via Twitter. Good in theory, but failed in execution. It just resulted in an angry crowd waiting for the person in the front of the room to finish typing out each tweet on their iPad. First thought that came to mind when Emerson and BU were announce 4th and 3rd were "who the heck got 2nd?" then we found out Roger Williams got 2nd, we were 95% sure we were going to be the next tweet, and we were! So many emotions leading up to this moment, there was screaming, hugging, crying, laughing, instantaneous retweeting, you name it - it happened. JWU Ad Team is going to San Diego for nationals!

We could not have done this if it weren't for the tremendous amount of teamwork and lack of inflated egos in the team as well as our 3 awesome faculty advisors who were there with us throughout the entire process. You know your professors love their job and care about the success of their students when they are working in the ad lab with you at odd hours of the day instead of spending time with their families. Words can't express how lucky we are to have them and just how much they care about this program. That also goes out to our other supporters from all levels of the University.

It's surreal to think that in exactly one month we will be competing at nationals in San Diego, and in less than a month we will be in Sweden, and even less than that I will have to have my life packed into a small storage unit.

Stay tuned, there's more to come...

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