Amy Donovan

Getting restless with Marriott

Amy DonovanFor most Alvernia students staying at the Marriott means just another good nights sleep. But for Amy Donovan ’09, the international travel and resort giant has much bigger connotations.

Donovan got up close and personal with Marriott during her senior year at Alvernia University when the hotel giant was creating a new facet to their brand and her marketing class was engaged with the firm’s Reading, Pa., based location to help develop a marketing plan. As a group project leader, competing with two other student groups, Donovan focused on conceiving the most creative campaign for their final project. Target audiences, design plans and market research were the name of the game and the motivated marketer wasted little time.

“Having an open canvas for design always empowers me artistically and has been my passion,” said Donovan, who majored in Marketing. “This project was the best exposure I had in my experiences at Alvernia. It allowed me to prepare myself for a future career.”

She and her group often worked outside of the classroom setting, consulting with a Marriott creative director to understand the direction their client wanted to pursue with the new brand. As a result, Donovan designed a logo for the Marriott Cruise line and focused on making sure the brand translated as family friendly.

“I felt like a real project manager by meeting with the creative director. It gave me the confidence to go above and beyond for this project to please our client. I was able to successfully blend their vision and mine.”

The results were sweet -- Donovan and her group were the top Alvernia team in the project. More importantly, through the experience she gained the real world skills needed to land her current job at Archive Systems in New Jersey where she is the Regional Solutions Representative with clients that range from Connecticut to Texas.

“If it weren’t for that project I would not have known what to expect when I entered the real world,” she said. “It helped prepare me to handle and develop my current clients’ needs.”

And that, as American Express would say, is priceless!

Did you know?

A National Leadership Council for Liberal Education and America's Promise study found that participating employers and recent college graduates agreed on the necessity of out of the classroom experiences. The study emphasizes the importance of providing students with important knowledge and skills but also experience putting that knowledge and skills to practical use in "real-world" settings.

Did you know?

Seventy-six percent of participating employers put "teamwork skills and the ability to collaborate with others in diverse group settings" at the top of their list of desired capabilities in new employees, according to a National Leadership Council for Liberal Education and America's Promise study. These are among the skills fostered by real-world learning experiences.

Did you know?

Service learning is a method of providing personal and academic development through work with established nonprofit organizations in the community. It is an avenue to introduce students to a professional environment without the extensive commitments of an internship.

Did you know?

Service learning provides ideal real world learning opportunities. According to SmartBlog on Leadership, doing volunteer and service work for a non-profit organization that is connected to your major or academic program of study helps develop leadership skills, expands your perspective of the world, allows you to discover new skills in a safe environment, and develops a larger network of real world contacts to draw upon once you graduate.

Did you know?

Service learning can take you outside of your comfort zone, giving you an opportunity to work with new challenges, people, politics and interpersonal dynamics. It also offers new perspective on priorities. Hanging out with people who have had different life experiences encourages you to tackle challenges from different angles. Julie Zolfo, founder of Make Success Matter said that she volunteered for six weeks at the schools in New Delhi, India.

Did you know?

"Alvernia's Career Development Center works with students to find avenues for employment, internships, co-ops, career exploration, resume development, and graduate school options. Center staff help students assess their options and identify their own "brand" to complement their life after Alvernia.

Did you know?

A recent career fair at Alvernia attracted more than 55 employers who were seeking to hire employees, co-ops and interns for their organizations. Career fairs like this one are fertile ground for students seeking real world learning opportunities and to reap the benefits of such as employers look to to hire staff members who have honed their skills and abilities via practical experiences in real situations.

Did you know?

Since its inception, Alvernia has offered real world opportunities with an emphasis on service and careers that help those in need. Field experiences in areas like criminal justice, social work, nursing, occupational therapy, health care science and teacher training among others provide our students with rich learning opportunities to test drive what it's like to work in that profession.

Did you know?

In a recent American Association of Colleges and Universities survey of 302 employers, 79 percent said institutions of higher learning should emphasize helping students apply what they learn in real-world settings, and 66 percent said that completing an internship or community field project would help prepare students for success.