Ohio University

The power of the Bobcat network: A guest blog post from alumna Julie Brown, BSJ ’11

The power of the Bobcat network: A guest blog post from alumna Julie Brown, BSJ ’11
Julie Brown, BSJ '11, left, poses with Jackson Baehr and Abbey Kay, who are both recent Scripps journalism graduates interning at The Adcom Group in Cleveland, Ohio. / Photo provided

Julie Brown, BSJ '11, is a senior public relations and social media specialist for The Adcom Group in Cleveland, Ohio. She reached out with the story of hiring two Scripps interns in the midst of the coronavirus pandemic.

Abbey Kay and I connected on Facebook in late 2019 through Jen Jones Donatelli, BSJ ’98, current Ohio University Alumni Association board member. Jen had seen Abbey’s post in a Cleveland women’s networking group page about her interest in social media marketing and shadowing opportunities. Given my role with the Cleveland Bobcats Alumni Chapter and my experience in Abbey’s field of interest, Jen knew I would be a beneficial contact. It’s no surprise that two social media enthusiasts connected this way!

I was impressed by Abbey’s proactiveness right off the bat. We set up a coffee chat around the holidays and she continued to make a great impression with how she carried herself. As I learned more about Abbey’s interests, capabilities, and experience, I could tell that she had a lot of potential and would be a great fit on our PR and brand advocacy team at Adcom if we were ever in the need to hire. 

During our chat, Abbey said she noticed that Adcom was not participating in American Advertising Federation Cleveland’s annual Agency Crawl, for which she had eagerly registered, so I decided to set up a day of networking for her. During Abbey’s visit, she was able to have one-on-one time with the members of our team, as well as Bobcats in other departments, to gain an understanding of various roles and how the agency operates.

When planning for the Adcom summer internship program began and the positions were announced, I strongly recommended that Abbey apply. Because of the team’s familiarity with her, Abbey was a frontrunner throughout the interviewing process and ultimately landed the job. Over graduation weekend, at my request, the Adcom Bobcats who had met with Abbey earlier in the year sent her a virtual graduation card to lift her spirits and express their excitement to begin working with her in June. 

When our team struggled to find a quality candidate for the copywriter internship position, our CEO turned to me, knowing my connections to Ohio University. Having recently worked with Erin Roberts, director of alumni relations at Scripps, I knew she would be a great resource. With the help of E.W. Scripps School of Journalism Director Dr. Dashiell, we received a strong application from Jackson Baehr, another strategic communications senior, with whom the team was highly impressed. 

I didn’t know this until recently, but Abbey and Jackson are friends and were in the same senior capstone. When Jackson saw the email blast that went out about the position, he touched base with Abbey knowing she had already gotten an offer from Adcom. This contributed to him ultimately applying. The interconnectivity makes me so happy! 

Alumni-to-student networking has always been valuable, but in a time of limited career opportunities, it’s critical for recent graduatess. I’m thrilled that I was able to connect these two bright, deserving Bobcats to our hiring team at Adcom. Their summer internships will be extremely valuable and are likely to be extended to full-time roles. Both students have shown great promise and “curgritivitfulness” – a word used to represent Adcom’s core values (curiosity, grit, positivity and thoughtfulness). I know both Abbey and Jackson will be Adcom all-stars, and I look forward to watching them shine!