TAI Hosts Annual Graduate Student Cookout for Graduate Program Members

Saturday August 27, TAI hosted a barbeque welcoming new students to the graduate program. Graduate Program Coordinator and Professor Peter Noble opened up his home to host invited faculty, staff, and students.

TAI graduate students and professors sharing a meal.

“TAI’s Annual Graduate Student Cookout was an opportunity to get our grad students and faculty/staff together for social, non-academic purposes,” Professor Noble said. “Getting to know more about each other outside of the classroom was an important goal. Great food, bright conversations, and shared discoveries of interests allowed everyone to feel a part of the TAI family.”

The event provided students with a wonderful chance to meet and bond with each other, as well as their professors and the head of their program. Graduate student Coral Pisek really valued the opportunity to get better acquainted with the program and its members.

“My experience at this year’s TAI Grad Student BBQ was very enjoyable and informative,” Pisek said. “Everywhere I go, I try to gain and learn as much as I can. Once I spotted the familiar faces from the first week of classes, I immediately began talking with them about how the past week went, how I thought I’d be the youngest one, and how the classes so far sounded interesting. I got to meet and discuss the future of advertising with Professor Edwards and meet Dalya, a really cool undergraduate student that’s combining her BA and MA in advertising. I had the opportunity to sit down and eat my juicy hamburger with Professors Kim and Edwards [and discuss] what got them interested in advertising in the first place. We also debated the ways advertising is not dead. I later discussed my future advertising aspirations with Professors La Ferle and Noble. It was very important to me to see how they can guide me to work on my passion in the future. The BBQ was an interesting opportunity to talk personally with many intellectuals in one house. I am very glad I went. I left the BBQ full, eager and hopeful for the future.”

Graduate students, faculty, and staff enjoying the Cookout.

TAI is always looking for opportunities to enhance our students’ experiences, and we can’t wait to host more events like this!

TAI 2016-2017 Student Awards

It’s been a wonderful year here at Temerlin Advertising Institute. With so many creative, industry, and SMU awards earned by our students, we could not be prouder. Along with external awards, we’ve recognized some of our students who go above and beyond what is required of them. Below are all the awards, external and internal, earned by our students during the 2016-2017 academic year.

INDUSTRY:

TAI Assistant Director Amy Dahmann and TAI Team Player Award Winner Matthew Smyth

4A’s Multicultural Advertising Internship Program (MAIP) – Idara Akpan

AAF’s Most Promising Multicultural Student – Marisol Moran-Sendra & Sofia Rosell

AAF American Advertising Awards (ADDYs) – Helen Rieger, Jackson Foley, Liz Martinelli, Morgan Hoff, Samantha Butz, Tiffan Giraudon

AAF Stickell Internship – Alex Gurasich

Advertising Education Foundation of Houston Scholarship – Matthew Smyth, Gyeryeong Kim

Alliance for Women in Media (AWM) Dallas Irene Runnels-Paula McStay Scholarship – Rita De Obarrio

DFW Interactive Marketing Association Scholarship – Rita De Obarrio

DSVC National Show Best Print Advertising Campaign & Best Copy – Morgan Hoff & Tanner Thompson

SMU:

TAI Professor Muralidharan, Assistant Director Amy Dahmann, and TAI Donald Carty Leadership Award Recipient Jessica Giraudon

SMU Mortar Board Top 10 Sophomore – Jolie Guz

Engaged Learning Project – Samantha Butz

Hunt Scholar – Jessica Giraudon

TAI Student Marshal at Graduation – Paige Brown

TAI Undergraduate Reader at Graduation – Tanner Thompson

TAI:

TAI Anchor Award – Julia Christen, Kelsi Jiang

TAI Donald John Carty Leadership Award – Jessica Giraudon

Face of TAI Award – Marisol Moran-Sendra, Tanner Thompson

TAI Optimizer Award – Helen Rieger

TAI Professor Mark Allen and TAI Resilience Award Recipient Laura Walsh

TAI Outstanding Academic Achievement in Creative – Helen Rieger

TAI Outstand Academic Achievement in Digital – Paige Brown

TAI Outstanding Academic Achievement in Strategic Brand Management – Marison Moran-Sendra

TAI Outstanding Graduate Student – Lauren Lombardo

TAI Resilience Award – Laura Walsh

TAI Responsibility Award – Idara Akpan, Rachel Kainer

TAI Service Award – Ryan Blitzer

TAI Team Player Award – Matthew Smyth

HONOR SOCIETIES:

Alpha Delta Sigma – Amy Cooley, Bari Kesner, Gifford Mellick, Greyeong Kim, Helen Rieger, Jessica Giraudon, Joanna Fennessey, Julia Christen, Laura Walsh, London Mercer, Marisol Moran-Sendra, Matthew Smyth, Nicholas McCall, Paige Brown, Rachel Kainer, Tiffany Giraudon

TAI Alpha Delta Sigma Honor Society Members

Kappa Tau Alpha – Arden Leone, Marisonl Moran-Sendra, Mustafiz Rahman, Paige Brown, Samantha Butz

TAI Students Attend South by Southwest (SXSW) Conference

This Spring Break, TAI students and faculty went to South by Southwest (SXSW) to attend the SXSW Conference, which included sessions on Brands & Marketing, Design, Development & Code, Experiential Storytelling, VR/AR and the Intelligent Future.

TAI students and faculty during SXSW.

Students attending enrolled in a course, got a student discount and will be receiving 3 hours of pass/fail credit for the experience. The speakers and sessions at the SXSW Conference explore the newest trends and what’s next in entertainment, culture, and technology.

“The most relevant thing I learned was to create interesting content,” TAI graduate student Peyton Meersman said. “I think every session mentioned that content has to be original, creative, and interesting in order for it to be successful.”

While SXSW offers a wide variety of session topics, students attending found the sessions diverse and fascinating. A big topic discussed in many sessions was virtual reality and artificial intelligence.

“AI was a big theme at SXSW,” SMU student Katherine Scarpulla said. “I felt the most reasonable and crucial point I was presented was the healthy equation of AI. Chris White of Microsoft Digital Crimes Unit argued during his Lighting Up The Dark Web session that in order to solve our human created social problems, we must incorporate a healthy mix of data, AI and human interaction. He also stressed the importance of data literacy and the beneficence of data narrative to better illustrate social problems.”

TAI Professor Amber Benson and Director Dr. Steve Edwards

Along with the SXSW experience, TAI students got to shadow members of Agency Entourage, a Dallas-based creative digital agency, during sessions and attend a Boat Party hosted by the agency.

“The Agency Entourage boat party was a lovely experience,” Scarpulla said. “This experience enabled SMU Temerlin students to network with members of Agency Entourage as well as other professionals attending SXSW. I personally had to opportunity to talk with Austin, an AE member, who I had attended a session with earlier that day. I appreciated the occasion to discuss my experiences and thoughts about SXSW Interactive with advertising professionals and hear their thoughts and comments. It enabled me to view the information I gained during sessions from multiple viewpoints and understand its application to fields/industries other than mine.”

This was the first year that students could attend SXSW through TAI while receiving course credit. Many students were excited about the opportunity and greatly enjoyed their time spent in Austin.

“My SXSW Interactive experience was absolutely amazing,” Scarpulla said. “I cannot imagine not having attended this event because of the knowledge and relationships I gained as a result. I would encourage other Temerlin Students to apply for the course as it is an opportunity to apply your academics to real-time experiences.”

TAI Graduate Student Lauren Lombardo Interning with Dallas Zoo

All students want to have a unique internship experience that they can brag about and proudly place on their resumes. An internship that sets you apart and is out of the ordinary. This semester, TAI graduate student Lauren Lombardo is doing just that while completing her Executive Internship at the Dallas Zoo.

Lombardo inside the Dallas Zoo.

Lombardo is working one of few indoor jobs at the zoo as the Communications and Marketing Intern. Her job responsibilities include writing editorial content, writing features for the blog, and participating in social media efforts.

“I’ve learned a lot about taking on different voices and writing for different audiences,” Lombardo said. “I create content for a variety of outlets at the Zoo, and each one needs to be tailored specifically for that outlet. I’ve also learned to be a better interviewer. A lot of the content I write is dependent on what I can get out of people, and my supervisors have shown me how to ask more robust questions in order to dig a little deeper.”

While this internship shares similar responsibilities to that of many other marketing internships, Lombardo’s position at the Dallas Zoo offers her unique experience working for a very different type of brand than typically taught in advertising courses.

“A typical day at the Zoo is probably a little different than most of other internships,” Lombardo said. “Usually, I come in to the administration office and check e-mail, respond to inquiries, and catch up with my supervisors as they’ll often assign me special projects to work on. I might write a blog post, which involves calling and interviewing a keeper or possibly going to an event. I usually try to draft an engaging social media post to go along with a blog. Every Zoo employee has a radio, so we’ll often receive radio calls about important events, like an elephant introduction, and head over to watch it during the workday. Other times, there might be a behind the scenes tour for interns that I’ll go to. I like to eat my lunch by the Sumatran Tigers or on Cat Green by the native Texas cats and walk around the Zoo. I usually finish up my day by working on the member newsletter, which means I have to contact the different Zoo departments to get the latest scoop on what they’re doing. Overall, a typical day is full of lots of writing and animals!”

Sumatran Tiger in the Dallas Zoo.

Lombardo’s love for animals and conservation has made her experiences at the Zoo incredibly special for her. Since she gets to spend a lot of time around the Zoo, she has seen several special events and exciting moments.

“My favorite moment from the internship has been attending the Zoo’s Cheetah Encounter,” Lombardo said. “As an intern, I was allowed to watch the Encounter from a VIP viewing area, so I was up close and personal for the whole experience. Winspear, the Zoo’s cheetah, took off running from one end of the exhibit to the other, and it was so amazing to see this athletic animal in action. I could even hear him purr at one point! Winspear also has a canine friend named Amani, who helps keep him calm [because] cheetahs are naturally nervous animals. The keepers took the time to talk with me about cheetah conservation and tell me more about the relationship between Winspear and Amani. Conservation is extremely important to me, especially when it comes to big cats (big cats are my favorite animals), so this was an extremely insightful and fun event. I often attend events like this and write blogs or social media posts about the experience.”

Lombardo got her undergraduate degrees in English and Geography from the University of Texas, and is now getting her Masters in Advertising from SMU. Her internship with Dallas Zoo provides her a perfect opportunity to combine her interests.

“The internship speaks to my two very specific areas of interest – writing and conservation,” Lombardo said. “My [undergraduate] Geography coursework specifically focused on sustainability. I never thought I would find an internship that incorporated these interests so well, but it’s made my time at the Zoo even more special and invaluable in terms of experience.”

In the future Lombardo hopes to work in the field of advertising and marketing as a professional copywriter.

“I would like to work for a either a non-profit or an agency that specializes in non-profit advertising and marketing,” Lombardo said. “My internship at the Zoo has provided me with direct experience in crafting copy for a non-profit and appealing to the members/donors that support the 501(c) community. I would also specifically like to work on campaigns that revolve around conservation and social responsibility, which is a major area of focus in the content I produce for the Zoo.”

TAI Student Nicki Fletcher Shares Experience Interning On Tour with Steven Tyler and Loving Mary Band

Most advertising students dream of having an amazing job opportunity, working for a huge brand, like Nike or Coca-Cola, or even getting the chance to work with celebrities. This summer, TAI student Nicki Fletcher had that opportunity. Fletcher is an Advertising major on the Creative track, and this past summer she had the opportunity to intern on tour with Steven Tyler and the Loving Mary Band.

Steven Tyler and Loving Mary Band interviewing for a radio show.
Steven Tyler and Loving Mary Band interviewing for a radio show.

While visiting her mother in Maui last Christmas, Fletcher met Kari Smith and Marti Frederiksen, the band manager and lead singer of the Loving Mary Band. Fletcher has always dreamed of working in the music industry, the same industry in which her mother works, and meeting Smith and Frederiksen gave her the perfect opportunity to break in.

“I had told Kari and Marti that I was interested in working in the music industry,” Fletcher said. “And they said if there’s ever an opportunity we’ll let you know. Then not too long after that they contacted me and said ‘We’re going on tour this summer, do you want to come? You can be the tour intern and learn the whole business.’”

Fletcher started working with the Loving Mary Band in May at CMA Fest in Nashville, where she was then given the opportunity to go along with them on tour during the summer. On July 1, Fletcher headed off on a month-long journey living on tour with famous musicians.

Loving Mary Tour promotion created by Nicki Fletcher.
Loving Mary Tour promotion created by Nicki Fletcher.

While on tour, Fletcher worked as an assistant to the musicians, as well as running the Loving Mary Band social media accounts, creating promotional graphics for the band and tour, and helping run band merchandise. A typical day for Fletcher involved starting work around 11am, making sure the bus was ready to go and everything was in place. She would get to the venue, which mostly consisted of large theaters, around 2-3pm and start working on sound checks and other miscellaneous preparations. After the concert was over, she would help bring VIP guests backstage and then pack up the bus to head to the next city, not staying in a single city for more than four days.

“I did a lot of flyers and promotional pieces that went out on Loving Mary’s Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, and website,” Fletcher said. “I helped with merchandise for the band mainly, so I learned a lot in the way of managing all of that. We did that through shows, at the venues, at the big concerts, and at Loving Mary’s smaller concerts and through the website. It was a lot of learning how to manage all of those parts and pieces too.”

Fletcher used many of the skills she’d learned from her participation in Ad Team, as well as advertising classes she has taken at SMU, while on tour. Going into the job she already knew the importance of keeping a campaign consistent, an important skill she attributes to her time on Ad Team. She also knew the importance of planning ahead and being detail-oriented, which helped her as she was preparing content that would be viewed by thousands of people.

Fletcher also learned valuable new lessons through this opportunity.

“You get thrown into this crazy world of rock-and-roll musicians,” Fletcher said. “And it’s so important to have professionalism no matter what the industry is. Even if it is an entertainment industry where the people around you, like the fans, are super excited all the time.” She learned how to balance staying focused and professional with taking the time to enjoy the amazing experiences she was having.

On top of that, Fletcher got to spend a lot of time with Steven Tyler.

“We’d be in the city, and we’d all go and have a family day and go and do something together,” Fletcher said. “He’s a really fun person to be around. He’s really sweet. He really just loves the band so much, and he’d get on our bus in the middle of the night and hang out or he’d ride with us from place to place.”

Backstage at one of the concerts while Fletcher was on tour.
The view from backstage at one of the concerts while Fletcher was on tour.

Her favorite memories from the internship involve the contrast between the “calm, beautiful morning” and “playing a show at a huge sold out concert venue” that night. Although she really enjoyed visiting Northern and Southern California, Canada, Seattle, Boston, and New York, one of her favorite shows was a corporate event at an outdoor venue in Minnesota.

After the amazing experience Fletcher had, she wants to encourage her fellow classmates to reach for amazing opportunities as well.

“Don’t be afraid to ask,” Fletcher said. “Always use your resources, ask them questions. Don’t be afraid to take a crazy chance. You can learn a lot from something that is so unconventional.”

TAI Graduate Student Spotlight: Snow Wang

Snow%20in%20Graphic%20Design%20positionIn mid-October, one of TAI’s second year MA in Advertising students, Snow Wang, began working in the Office of Student Transitions & Orientation. Here she is charged with graphic design projects for Recruitment Materials, Mustang Corral Graphics, Mustang Corral Compass as well as AARO Schedules and Student Transitions & Orientation Magazine.

Dr. Carrie La Ferle, Professor of Advertising as a Cultural Force and International Advertising, commented “How great it is when students are able to earn money working in positions that are also related to their field while also benefiting their university! It is just a win-win-win all around.” For more information on the MA in Advertising program, click here.

TAI Graduate Backyard BBQ Mixer

A great time was had by new and returning MA in advertising students as well as TAI Faculty & Staff last week at the home of Professor Noble, Co-ordinator of the TAI MA in Advertising program.  

4 Steve gives thanks speach  5 Bruce-Cheryl-Erica-Colleen-MustafizStudents representing several states and countries from as far away as Bangladesh and mainland China attended. The weather was great and everyone had a chance to mix and mingle before the hard work begins.

7 Preston-Diana-Marin-Erica-April-Snow-2016 MA cohort 8 Alice-Peter-David BBQ cooking

For more information on the TAI Master’s in Advertising program, click here.

9 Amber&Kevin at BBQ 12 Katie & Cady

TAI MA Global Immersion – Week 2 in Hong Kong

2015HKWeek2
The first year MA in Advertising students spent the second week of their global immersion in both Hong Kong and Macau. The week started with an informative guest lecture by Dr. Kara Chan on Branding in Asia followed by an interesting visit to the Hong Kong Heritage Museum. Among many exhibits, the life story and accomplishments of Bruce Lee was a group favorite. Thursday had the group meeting with the McCann & Spencer Advertising Agency where they learned about the creative growth of advertising in Hong Kong while experiencing many famous advertising campaigns undertaken by McCann over the years.

The week ended with a trip to Macau for a guided tour by the Advertising and PR team of the Galaxy Entertainment Group. Phase II of the 1.1 million square meters property, that is home to six major hotels with casinos, shopping and recreational facilities for families and VIP members, opened on May 27, 2015.

Saturday the students enjoyed a day tour of the famous sites of Macau such as the Ruins of Saint Paul’s Church, the Macau tower and the A-Ma Temple. Saturday night found the group experiencing the cultural blending of East and West while enjoying The House of Dancing Water show at the City of Dreams. This amazing show was directed by Franco Dragone (former director of Cirque du Soleil) and weaves cultural symbols and a love story through death-defying stunts, acrobatics, ballet, diving and water explosions.

Stay tuned for more to come from Week 3 as the group visits with OMD and enjoys some social time with a group of advertising students visiting Hong Kong from Queensland University in Brisbane, Australia.

TAI MA Global Immersion Experience – June 2015 in Hong Kong

Hong Kong Week 1 - June 2015
After fall and spring courses in advertising, TAI first year MA in Advertising students are off to Hong Kong for the month of June. They take International Advertising, while having guest lectures on Chinese culture and advertising in Asia from professors in Hong Kong. They also undertake cultural tours and agency visits to learn about the advertising industry in Hong Kong as well as the greater Asian region.

During their first week, they have hiked at The Peak, enjoyed a traditional Dim Sum lunch, visited the Hong Kong History Museum and spent a few hours with MAXUS, a GroupM Company in Quarry Bay, Hong Kong. At MAXUS, the students learned the ins and outs of media in Hong Kong. They were fortunate enough to have an hour long presentation by Ms. Moon Cheng, Maxus’ Strategic Director. Stay tuned for more highlights from Hong Kong and their global immersion experience.