My experience at Ca' Foscari with Erasmus Staff Training

What is your role and what does it involve?

My official title is Communications Coordinator. I work on American University’s Kogod School of Business’ Strategic Communications team. I do many different things, but my core identity is a writer. I produce the core content for my team – news articles for the Kogod News blog, speeches for our dean, copy for our brochures, text for the website – you name it. Ultimately, I work collaboratively with a website manager, graphic designer, photographer and digital media manager to promote our school’s programs.

What working achievement or initiative are you most proud of?

Speech writing! When I joined the team, I knew nothing about writing speeches or the strategy behind crafting them. Now, through the mentorship from my supervisor, I feel confident in how to approach the process and analyze the product. It’s really helped me think more strategically in creating content, and learn how to write in another person’s voice.

Tell us about a project you are working on now which is top of your to-do list?

I’m helping produce a monthly Facebook Live series called Business Briefings, where I interview a professor on their area of expertise and film it for a live audience. We are releasing a report at the end of the month, and I will be interviewing the professor that produces it as a way to publicize the release. It’s a pretty extensive process with many details, including developing an e-mail campaign to promote the event, creating a Facebook event page, writing interview questions, conducting a dress rehearsal discussion, etc.

Why did you apply for Erasmus staff training experience?

I’ve always been interested in other countries, cultures and different ways of approaching things. I really wanted to experience what life and work in Italy would be like, and gain a broader perspective on life.

What surprised you most about your visit to Venice?...and to Ca’ Foscari University?

How similar we are! I think many challenges Ca’ Foscari faces are very similar to American University’s – especially in the communications department, where I worked. For example, I learned that Ca’ Foscari is currently working on re-defining their brand, which my school at American University (Kogod) just did. In talking through their experience, I saw that our schools have the same concerns, challenges, and desires in our strategic planning process. This surprised me, because I thought that putting things into a different cultural context would change many things – but it did not!

I felt the same way about the friends I made outside of work. I think in the end, we are all so much more similar as human beings than many (including myself) realize. The peers I met there have very similar concerns and desires as me and my friends at home. We really do live in a global world and I loved experience this first-hand.

What is your favourite album, film and novel?

Oh, this is a hard one! Let me try though…

Favorite album: I’m not sure I can pick – anything by Trampled by Turtles:

Film: 10 Things I Hate About You.

Novel: The Alchemist by Paulo Coelho

Who would be your dream dinner guests?

Jhumpa Lahiri, my favorite writer.

How do you see yourself in 10 years?

I dream of so many things! Professionally, I’d love to be in an editorial or management role where I am directing the development of content in some capacity – whether it be for a magazine, a marketing department or working as a consultant. I’d also love to develop my creative writing, eventually going back to school for an MFA in fiction.

Personally, I see myself with many different experiences, having traveled around the world and met many new people. But I would also like to be settled with a family, and my dog Hugo (who would be 12 by then!)

Thank you so much for the opportunity to share my experience! Please let me know if I can answer any other questions.