August 8, 2014
By Corrie Purvis
Starting a new job is always difficult – new people, new goals, a completely new mindset – but it’s even more daunting to come into an entirely new industry. ASI, however, made this transition manageable, and, in fact, enjoyable. This summer I was able to learn so much about the promotional products industry, while also expanding my writing portfolio. And there was time for some fun as well.
One unique aspect of interning at ASI is the week of training prior to the start of work. Because of Tim Andrews’ connection to Dow Jones, we (Rachel Abraham and I) were able to participate in the Dow Jones News Fund Business Reporting “boot camp” in New York City. There, we met rising business journalists from across the country and learned a thing or two about the fundamentals of writing for a business audience. Our instructor, Will Sutton of Grambling State University (a fairly interesting man), toured us around the bustling Manhattan streets, meeting editors and producers of publications like The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal and NBC Nightly News. This week truly engraved the idea into my mind that with hard work, I could also end up here someday.
Once back in Trevose (almost as glamorous as the Big Apple!), it was time to get started on serious business. The Editorial department at ASI did a wonderful job welcoming us interns, giving us time to adjust to the new environment before giving us a ton of assignments. Over the course of the summer, we had the opportunity to write and do research for all five ASI publications, as well as speak with some of the top names in the industry – I even interviewed a man who helped create costumes for Breaking Bad! We helped put together showcases, best in show spreads, write designer profiles and glued seemingly thousands of items to a yellow Mazda (quite a resume addition).
We were also fortunate enough to assist with a fashion shoot for Stitches and Wearables magazines. As budding fashionistas ourselves, it was exciting to get a behind-the-scenes look at what it takes to put together the stunning images you see in these publications. It also made me realize that modeling is more than just pouting at a camera – those girls were working it!
In all seriousness, ASI is without a doubt one of the best places I have ever worked (at 21 I’ve only worked at so many locations, but regardless). The culture here is relaxed, yet still professional; I can comfortably come to the office and actually enjoy my work. I mean, how many offices host World Cup viewing parties during work hours? The Editorial department took a day to go to a Phillies game, and another day to express our artistic sides at a painting studio. I never in a million years expected to do any of these things as a summer intern, and it’s great to be at a company that genuinely values its employees.
This was definitely not an internship that involved just getting coffee for my superiors (although I did do that once … Michele drinks a lot of coffee!). The amount of experience and exposure I got with writing for this industry is exceptional, and unparalleled. As I head back to school for my final semester, I take with me capacious stacks of writing samples, as well as connections and even friends with whom I hope to stay in contact after my time at ASI comes to a close.
ASI CEO and President Tim Andrews with Rachel Abraham (left) and Corrie Purvis.
Working on the ASI PromoCar.
At a fashion photo shoot.