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    Impact and Support in a Virtual Environment as a Drexel Co-op

    September 30, 2021
    Posted by Zach Plotkin

    Zach Plotkin came to PHM to learn about programmatic advertising and media in a corporate setting, but left with something far greater – a sense of teamwork and togetherness unique to PHM.

    I am attracted to challenging, high-paced and encouraging work environments that push me toward constant improvement. It is one of the many reasons why I chose to study entrepreneurship as an undergraduate at Drexel University. Another reason was Drexel’s prominent co-op program, which allows students to gain experience in the work force for up to 18 months in three, six-month periods during college. This is what brought me to Philadelphia, and eventually to PHM.

    My first co-op offered the opportunity to gain experience with social media marketing and design at a tennis education center. During this initial entry into the workforce, I found that the opportunity to gain corporate experience that fostered a team-oriented approach was something I knew had to be integral to my next experience –  which is exactly what I got during my time at PHM.

    Even in the interview, I could sense the positive culture that was embodied throughout the company and its employees. It was a no-brainer to accept the offer as a Programmatic Associate, even though I hardly knew anything about Programmatic Advertising. Despite the unfortunate reality that this co-op would be mostly remote, I was eager to learn, get to work and try my hardest to leave an impact.

    I joined a well-established team of three hard-working and resilient people. From staying organized, managing my time and navigating the constantly changing media landscape, my teammates were there to help guide me. Before my co-op with PHM, I was uncomfortable working with data. Flash forward six months and with the help of my teammates, I learned how to work with data and am confident in doing so. This was the first time the co-op program at PHM was remote and working remotely presented its own challenges. There were times when work became overwhelming but with their calm demeanor, my teammates put things in perspective: It’s not that deep and it will all be okay!

    The community at PHM was strikingly powerful, despite the virtual environment. Everyone I interacted with always made themselves available for questions, advice and feedback. Having Friday morning team hangs, bi-weekly coffee breaks and weekly table topic presentations made the culture vibrant and encouraging.

    Some may think that being a co-op or intern would make leaving an impact difficult. At PHM I never once felt like I was just a co-op. I contributed to the overall team and their goals, just like any other new associate would. I found that the purest way to make an impact is to be yourself and remain true to who you are. My teammates took me in right away and cultivated a positive environment that allowed me to be the best version of myself.

    Over the past six months as a Programmatic Associate, I learned skills like campaign pacing and brand safety. But what I’ll take away most are the positive relationships and welcoming environment that I felt from day one. I leave PHM with many takeaways, but two stand out in particular: impact and team. Next year, I’ll be going into my final co-op and while the next step of my career is to be determined, I know one thing is certain – the essence of PHM and its people have left a lasting impact on me that I’ll carry wherever I go.

    #PHMLove forever!

    Connect with Zach on LinkedIn.

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