The Right Place at the Right Time

Hello everyone,

For those of you who don’t know me, my name is Carly Ekstein and I am in the third semester of the post-degree Marketing program at UWO’s Continuing Studies. I want to tell you about my internship and the story behind how I got the opportunity to work here. The story that follows is very much a tale that validates the age old saying of being in the “right place at the right time”.

Since I was a little kid, I have always expressed an intense passion for two things; one, fashion and two, all types of social events. When I embarked on the task of securing an internship, I researched every PR agency in Toronto (yes, I am from the big city) that represented fashion brands, I reached out to the biggest and best fashion retailers in the city, and I applied to event management firms, again in Toronto. I was contacted by many of these places and had interviews with them, but as October came to an end, I was unsatisfied with the options and offers that lay before me. One morning (October 6th to be exact) I received this email from Aimee Froude, Practicum Coordinator at Continuing Studies:

“Dear Students,
If any of you are interested in a part time/on call
position with KCI Management (Corporate Events)

please see the following job description for
further details (These positions are compensated)”

Admittedly, I am a blackberry addict so the minute (literally, the minute) that I read this email and realized 1) the job involved events and 2) the job was compensated, I responded to KCI management expressing my interest. Within a week I had an interview with the COO and was offered the job on a part time basis. I went in twice a week for the first little while and then I started going in almost every day. The work environment was incredibly fast-paced (which I thrive off of) and the tasks were ever-changing, every day was something new. While I was working (almost full-time) and going to school I was still heavily immersed in my internship search. I was stressed out to say the least.

One morning, I went into the KCI office and my boss asked me “how would you like to do your internship here at KCI?” I asked her if I would be able to work from my home in Toronto (some employees at the company are able to work off-site with remote access). The simple answer was no. I was being offered a full-time, paid internship position at a job that I had already been exposed to and came to love, but I would be reporting to the office that was located in London. From the very beginning when I started the Marketing program, I had it set in my head that when classes ended, I would move back to Toronto. This is the city where I see myself establishing my career and settling down, so naturally I would want to do my internship there. However, when this offer presented itself, I just could not turn it down. All of my prayers were answered in an email. My internship found me as opposed to the other way around.

I have been working at KCI Management Inc. full-time for a month and a half and I absolutely love it. I have had the opportunity to work on-site at corporate events (trade shows, corporate training sessions, national movie screening events etc.) and learn from an incredibly talented pool of people. While my ideal plan was to move back to Toronto, I decided to take a risk and be open-minded to extending my stay in London. A book I once read said “good luck can be enticed by accepting opportunity…action will lead you forward to the successes that you desire” (Clason, G.S.,1988) and my internship is an illustration of this quote coming to life; I took a chance and accepted an opportunity that was presented to me and I have not regretted it for a second.

We all have grand plans and dreams for our future, but sometimes we have to diverge from these idealistic plans and let nature take its course. You might be surprised (just like I was) to learn that sometimes, things just seem to fall into place. It’s all about putting yourself out there, being open-minded and answering the door when opportunity knocks.

Whether you are in the classroom or the working world, I wish each and every one of you a happy and successful New Year. If you have any questions or comments, we would love to hear from you! To contact me directly, please do not hesitate to send me an email at cekstein@uwo.ca

CE

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One Comment on “The Right Place at the Right Time”

  1. Dee Crilly says:

    What a great opportunity! You must be gaining lots of valuable experience along with building great relationships and connections that will assist you in the future. The benefit of the Post-Degree program is that the instructors and staff facilitate experience and contacts even before the internship opportunity is available.

    Thank you for sharing such an inspiring story Carly!


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