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IHAVEANIDEA.ORG > ask jancy >  Do I need an ad-specific education to break in as a CW?

Do I need an ad-specific education to break in as a CW?


Well, it appears as though I’ve caught the ad bug. While working as a legal intern for Deckers Outdoor Corporation, I began to realize that my passion for my job is really just the joy I experience from working for a series of brands (in this case Ugg, Simple, Teva, Mozo, Tsubo, and Ahnu shoes).
I am about to graduate with a BA in History and a Minor in Professional Writing, the latter of which has led me through such courses as Grammar and Stylistics, Magazine Writing, Creative Nonfiction, Legal Writing, Business Writing, and Copyediting.
So now for the question…Will my liberal arts education provide any type of foundation for a future career as a copywriter?
In addition to my internship with Deckers, I have worked at Santa Barbara Magazine as an editorial intern for seven months, and I will be picking up another internship in the Spring with the marketing department of an alumni magazine on campus.
I have been looking at the San Francisco Academy of Art MFA and would love to pursue that, but that route would definitely imply graduate student loans.
I will definitely work on building my work experience in advertising, but do I need the ad-specific education now?
P.S. I have ordered your book, and it’s on the way.

intro Do I need an ad specific education to break in as a CW?Not so long ago, copywriters showed up from many corners, none of them an advertising program in school. Your background would have gotten you in the door and after some copy tests you might have been hired readily. Today many writers still come into advertising from different routes, but it’s undeniably helpful if you have a strong portfolio that reflects a real education in communications. We like the school you are considering and believe it would give you a better shot at landing a job you want.

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About Jancy

'Jancy' is Janet Kestin and Nancy Vonk, Co-Founders of Swim, a unique “creative leadership training lab for advertising creatives and marketers.” Prior to Swim, Jancy was globally renowned as the Co-Chief Creative Officers of Ogilvy & Mather Toronto, a position they held for thirteen of the twenty years they were a creative duo at the agency. Over the years they've racked up Cannes Lions, Clios, One Show pencils and CA credits, and have lead their shop to two Cannes Lions Grand Prix and a Grand Clio. They've judged CA, Cannes, D&AD, the One Show, the Clios and other prestigious award shows. Creativity named them two of the top 50 creative people of 2008. Known for their outspoken, no-bullshit style and a passion for mentoring juniors, they're ready to give you advice if you're ready to take it.

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