Oct 22, 2015

What I Learned on the NYC Marketing Trek

By Brian Cook T’17 

Brian is from Washington, D.C. and attended Georgetown University for his undergraduate degree. Prior to Tuck, he worked for Teach For America as a corps member, an operations and finance director, and a national director in recruitment.

I chose Tuck because of the incredible individuals and the shared commitment to make this community one of the most dynamic places to learn and grow in the world. Beyond the sheer intelligence of my classmates, professors and community is a far more telling characteristic of what it means to choose Tuck. Tuckies, as we affectionately call one another, are invested in one another. This manifests in a variety of ways, but during the New York City Marketing Trek, I got to see the “network” come alive in two powerful moments during the trip.

On a very practical level, the trek revealed what people mean when they say, “Tuck thrives because of alumni responsiveness.” I appreciated the way that alumni from the various firms took time to provide tours of their offices, share their experiences and ensure that senior leadership from their firm gave us a truly strategic view of the major priorities of their organizations. One of the major highlights occurred on the last day of the trek when Vayner Media Director Kim Francis T’08 arranged a unique wine tasting and Q&A session with media mogul and founder, Gary Vaynerchuk. Gary shared dynamic, unfiltered thoughts about his path as a founder and investor, as well as about the role of social media disruption and the advent of big data on the marketing function and space over the foreseeable future. This level of exposure to, and intimacy with, CEOs and other senior level leaders added a dimension to the trek that Tuck’s close knit community is able to consistently deliver.

I must say, spending just a few days in New York really hammered home the difference in the speed of life in Hanover as opposed to New York City. On one of the first nights, Brooklyn Gin, a Tuck start-up, hosted our group for a Happy Hour at Madame Geneva. Tuck alums from L’Oreal, H&M, Pepsi, Unilever, and General Mills were in attendance. From the Happy Hour, small groups departed into the city for dinner and more conversation. Over dinner with a few classmates, we shared our aspirations, our values and our takeaways from the day. I appreciated most that what resonated with all of us was the idea that Tuck is providing us with not just access to great career prospects, but a community of people deeply committed to reflection and acceleration of your leadership. Even amidst the speed of the city, I felt, in the intimacy of our social outing, a bond that ties Tuckies together. The trek offered great insights into the marketing world and possible jobs out there, but more importantly the trip confirmed that regardless of the path I choose, I sure am lucky to have this kind of network in my corner!

Students at Google.

Students at the Pepsi Innovation Center with alumni.

Students listen to a presentation from IDEO.

Hussein Nasreddin T'13 leads a Colgate trend tour.

Students at Starwood, where the CFO was one of the hosts.

Students at IDEO.