On March 29th, six Palm Beach Atlantic University Students (PBA), representing PBA’s chapter of the American Marketing Association, found themselves in the company of Carey O’Donnell, the recent winner of the prestigious Companion Medal awarded at the annual American Free Enterprise Day. When she is not being recognized for her success, Ms. O’Donnell can be found in her office at O’Donnell Agency, where she is the President and Creative Director. The students of PBA were greeted with a warm welcome from Ms. O’Donnell herself as they walked into the modern and vibrant office of the agency. Quickly after, the students were led into the spacious conference room to learn what makes the O’Donnell Agency unique. The students learned that since O’Donnell Agency is located in a relatively small market (for a large market think New York or Los Angeles), the agency operates as a full-service agency, doing everything from ad placement to public relations. This is not the case for many agencies in the modern day era of marketing. Due to the increasing amount of technology and mediums, agencies are becoming highly specialized and often times large corporations use many agencies depending on their needs. Ms. O’Donnell explained this as she revealed her passion for the industry and excitement about her clients.
Following the introduction from Ms. O’Donnell, Brandy Stephenson, Advertising Manager, took the students on a tour of the office, complete with the tree of life in the middle. The office has a vibe to it that would make any client feel comfortable doing business with O’Donnell Agency and would make any employee cheerful as they step into work each day. The students were introduced to the members of each department as they made their way back to the conference room. The students finished the day meeting Tony Theissen (Senior Brand Manager and Media Strategist), Brittany Quinn (Senior Brand Manager), and Whitney Pettis (Director of Digital Strategy). The students were given brief career journeys and job responsibilities as the employees discussed the real-life solutions they were providing to their clients. Obviously, the hot topic of social media and digital marketing really interested the students as Whitney Pettis walked through the strategies she uses to meet her client’s digital needs. Overall, the day was not only a fun change from the classroom environment, but it gave the AMA students a valuable perspective on opportunities to look forward to post-graduation. Kyle Anderson, Junior, and recently elected AMA Executive Board member shared his thoughts on the day: “It was such a neat experience to visit the O’Donnell Agency and speak with the President and employees. It gave us a true glimpse into the extensive impact that marketing has on our local community and the many opportunities that marketing has to offer.” PBA’s AMA chapter looks forward to continuing a relationship with local businesses in the future to continue to develop future marketing professionals of tomorrow.