Featured Alum: Eli Ouellette

Listen to what makes you happy

Eli Ouellette graduated from the School of Journalism and Communication with an emphasis in advertising in April 2014.

The combination of art, business and psychology attracted him to the major. He recognized that advertising was a very results-driven industry. “Solving real world business problems requires measures of success that don’t exist in other creative fields, and that both scared and excited me. It seemed like a good fit.”

He credits being involved in classes and clubs (the portfolio class, Ad Team and Allen Hall Advertising) and getting to know the faculty as “crucial” in helping him determine what type of work he might enjoy. It also helped him lay the foundation of his portfolio.

 “As for the first job, don’t overthink it too much: if you get a good opportunity that you’re excited about, take it.”

During the summer of his junior year he landed an internship with the Portland Advertising Federation. After graduation he did a short media internship with UO Housing. He says, “I think those experiences did help, not only by bolstering my resume, but also by helping me figure out what I like doing.” He also polished his portfolio and resume and applied for jobs anywhere he thought he might like to live. Informational interviews helped him meet people and fine-tune what he thought he might like in a first job.

Currently, Eli works as an Assistant Account Manager at Goodby, Silverstein & Partners. He especially appreciates the office culture there and says he enjoys working with “some of the best people doing the best work.” Although he may move into a different position in the future, this first job has helped him identify his strengths.

He advises future graduates to have a focus even if it eventually changes. “Employers don’t want to hire someone who doesn’t know what they want to do, so pick a direction and stick with it for awhile. As for the first job, don’t overthink it too much: if you get a good opportunity that you’re excited about, take it.” Eli also recognizes the pressures of being a graduate and recommends, “Listen to what makes you happy.”

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