If presented with the opportunity, I encourage every OU student to work at OU Rec Well. It has been an incredible and extremely fun experience.
My name is Michaela Briscoe and I was hired as a Graphic Design Intern, January of 2016. Working for OU Rec Well opened many doors for me, both professionally and personally. I never expected to gain so many friends and skills from this internship. At the Rec an Intern is not just an extra body to get coffee, you get to create your own project and develop your ideas. You are encouraged to speak up and taught how to grow as a person and a professional. It is realistic office experience and an energetic environment.
I came into this job having no experience in design aside from my passion for art and learning new skills. Since last year alone, I have done designs for a campus wide program, which promoted fitness and wellness. I have filmed, directed, edited, and planned eleven employment videos while coordinating with my direct supervisor ,the Marketing Graduate Assistant and the Student Development Coordinator, while also organizing over twenty-five students to take part in the videos.
My first semester here I was intimidated by the sheer quantity of students that work at OU Rec Well. I wasn’t sure how to approach trying to learn so many names. One day, I felt like going a little out of my comfort zone and talking to someone. I walked up to the Service Desk and just asked her name and major. It wasn’t difficult but it made it easier and easier to make more friendships and connections.
Working at the Rec has also helped me discover and develop a few key skills that helped me obtain the full-time position I recently accepted with a consulting company. Time management is critical, especially working as a Graphic Design Intern, because the deadlines are generally a week or two weeks before a program is scheduled. Strong communication is a big part of meeting deadlines, communication is important in any position. When a person is a strong communicator they have part one of leadership down! Leadership is probably the biggest improvement I have made while working for OU Rec Well.
In the beginning of September I received an email inviting me to apply to the Emerging Leadership Program. I am a person who is always eager to improve and learn more; I applied and about a week later was accepted to the program, out of over one hundred applicants only thirty-six students were selected campus-wide. I felt extremely honored to have been selected. Now that the program is wrapping up I can say wholeheartedly I would not be the same person had I not gone through the Emerging Leadership Program. It helped me grow my network, gain insight from professionals who came in to speak, and it was a humbling experience to hear all of the stories for these highly successful people. It opened my eyes to see that with the right mentality I really can accomplish my dreams.
My life advice to you that I have learned from OU Rec Well is: don’t count yourself out for any opportunity even if you aren’t qualified. The worst that can happen is someone says no. If you are unsure how to do something, ask, a majority of people in the world are more than willing to take five minutes to help you. Setting goals is crucial to success, without a destination the journey has no meaning. Set several goals for all aspects of your life: short-term goals (one week, four weeks, and eight weeks) and long-term goals (one year, three years, and five years). Get out of your comfort zone! Take every opportunity to improve yourself, what makes humans unique is our ability to change, improve, and make a difference in the world.
I want to thank the Professional staff, the Graduate staff, and the Undergraduate students for helping me in so many ways over the past year. You are all amazing people and I am looking forward to seeing you all continue to make a difference in the world. To the Marketing Department, I love you all so much and will miss working and laughing with you. Christina, thank you for pushing me to constantly improve, gain new skills, and grow as a leader. Marie, thank you for helping me become the leader I am today. Finally Maura, thank you for being you, you helped me realize it is important to have down time to recoup. You are all wonderful leaders and supervisors and it was a privilege to work under you. Thank you OU Rec Well!!!