Name: Jen Ockelmann
Hometown: Redondo Beach, CA
College/Major: Stanford, American History
Pre-Business School: Sales & Marketing in Tech Media
Summer Internship: Franchise Management at NBCUniversal
Childhood dream job and why: I wanted to be a newspaper editor. I love writing, and I love working on a deadline!
Why business school? I knew I wanted to move from the tech start-up world into Entertainment, grow my leadership, networking and quant skills, and relocate to LA. Business school was the right way to achieve all of those goals at once!
Why marketing? I have always been passionate about understanding how brands connect with their audiences and build ongoing brand loyalty while also telling incredible stories. In my previous role in sales and marketing, I worked directly with entertainment clients in television and gaming and helped them with their marketing plans, and realized that I wanted to be on the other side of the table!
Why Anderson? Since I wanted to be in Entertainment, there's no better place to be than Anderson. Between the location in LA and the huge alumni network in Entertainment, it was by far the best option.
Anderson Activities & Leadership:
Executive Vice President, Anderson Student Association
Entertainment ACT Coach
VP of Student Relations, Entertainment Management Association
Member, Marketing Association and Anderson Wine Club
What is the best class you've taken at Anderson? Entertainment Marketing with Professor Sanjay Sood was an outstanding class! In addition to learning the ins and outs of film and TV marketing from people who had actually done it, we had incredible speakers (such as the showrunner of Lost!) and even had the opportunity to build marketing plans for films and television shows that weren't yet available to the public and present them to the marketing teams at NBC and Universal Pictures. Even more exciting? Seeing a billboard idea I had suggested out in the wild!
What is your Applied Management Research (AMR) Project? My team is working with Cricket Wireless (subsidiary of AT&T) to ideate and analyze potential new revenue streams to work alongside their current prepaid wireless business.
Favorite Anderson event/trip: Ski Trip! Skiing all day with 150 friends and staying in a house with 10 of my sectionmates was a total blast and a great way to cement a lot of amazing friendships.
What did you do the summer before business school to prep for fall recruiting? Before business school began, I started reading the entertainment industry trades (The Hollywood Reporter, Deadline, Variety) and keeping up on the news from some of my favorite target companies.
How did you figure out what industry/function you wanted to pursue? I had always been passionate about entertainment and media and had enjoyed following trends and learning about the studio business. In my previous role, I realized that I most enjoyed working on strategic marketing plans for entertainment clients. And once I got to Anderson, I loved all of the preparation I was doing to recruit for entertainment.
What helped you the most in interview prep/career search? The most helpful things during my process were: 1) ACT - I had an amazing ACT coach who helped me with interview prep, introduced me to various contracts, and was an incredible cheerleader throughout my entire first year. 2) The Anderson alumni network - having coffee chats with alums opened my eyes to so many teams and roles I'd never even heard of! So many of them were incredibly helpful and gave fantastic advice and insight. 3) Parker - The Parker series, the small group sessions, and 1-on-1 meetings with Parker advisors helped me chart my path to landing the perfect internship.
How did you utilize Parker in your job search? I utilized everything I learned during the Parker Series. From resume/cover letter prep to how to seek out alums and networking prospects to how to answer specific fit questions, it was all incredibly beneficial during my job search. But even more importantly, the personal attention of each of the Parker advisors was a huge part of the search for me, especially on those tough days when things didn't seem to be going my way. Several advisors stepped up to help me brainstorm options, practice for interviews, critique my application materials, and even just talk through my whole job search process from a practical and emotional perspective.
How many informational interviews did you conduct? 20
Hardest interview question? "If we were taking a new product into India, how would you approach outlining a marketing plan for this new market?" I got tripped up by this case question during my first interview and learned a valuable lesson about prepping more diverse case questions in the future.
How did you land your internship? I met a great contact through Entertainment Career Night. He didn't work in marketing, but we hit it off. He introduced me to a colleague from a totally different team who worked in the office next to his. I met that colleague for coffee and chatted with him on and off for a few months, which resulted in a job offer!
Describe your internship. As a member of the Franchise Management team at Universal Pictures, I helped work on long-term marketing strategy for some of the company's biggest franchise properties, including Jurassic World, Fast and Furious, Despicable Me, and the upcoming Monsters Universe. We built ongoing franchise plans and strategy decks, worked with consumer products and theatrical marketing to coordinate strategies, and helped put ongoing activations into effect. Additionally, I participated in a cross-divisional project with other Universal marketing interns, which gave me the opportunity to put together a full marketing plan for an upcoming film and present it to upper level management, including the President of Worldwide Marketing!
Fun fact: The thing people ask about most on my resume is that I have "superheroes" in my "interests" section, and I've had more than one interview turn into a conversation about a hypothetical battle between their favorite superhero and mine.