Adam Scherzer, account manager at VMLY&R
Graduation year: 2019
Brief bio: Hello! My name is Adam Scherzer. I grew up in Wheaton, Illinois, and currently live in Kansas City, Missouri. I was raised a Jayhawk fan so the University of Kansas was the only collegiate option I considered. I graduated with a Bachelor’s of Science degree in Journalism and Mass Communications in the Strategic Communications track and minored in Marketing. During my time at KU, I took part in The Agency, was a member of KU Ad Club, wrote for the University Daily Kansan and acted as a Journalism School Student Ambassador.
How did you get your current job? As cliché as it sounds, I got my foot in the door with VMLY&R from connections I made while I was in school, but not in textbook networking fashion.
One of my best friends in college had a brother that worked at VMLY&R in the Chicago office. I had met him a couple times, so it didn’t feel out of left field when I asked to shadow him for a day one summer. He’s an art director on the creative side, and it was a Friday so needless to say, it was a light day around the office. But I was able to see what their office looked like, meet a bunch of people and get a good feel on what an agency was really about.
Couple years later, he’d moved to the Kansas City office, and I was looking for a summer internship after graduation. I applied and emailed him my resume to give me a little head start in the interview process. I got the job and have been working with him for three years now. Kind of funny how that all panned out.
What do you like best about your job? I get the privilege to work on one of the fastest and most fun accounts at VMLY&R: Wendy’s. Working on Wendy’s is the best because every day there is something new that pops up in the realm of possibilities that we get to attack. It could be working on a television production with celebrity talent like Reggie Miller for March Madness or organizing the best holiday of the year like National Roast Day on Twitter or putting together amazing social content to promote, drive our audience into the Wendyverse, or traveling to Jacksonville, Florida, for Halloweendy’s outside of the Florida-Georgia football game. I could list several more fun aspects of this job, but the point is that we can have fun with any occasion and no idea is a bad idea. The fast-paced, collaborative atmosphere is what keeps us going.
How has the J-School prepared you for the workforce? I tried to get my hands on everything — not only for experience and building an outstanding resume but more so to find out what interested me the most. I loved that the J-School offered so many extracurricular programs for students to experiment with. Also, all of them are very team-oriented and that’s exactly how the advertising/marketing world is — from the briefing process to the creative ideation process to the production process. You have to be able to work well in a group setting.
What advice would you give to journalism students? I cannot recommend it enough to get involved. Soak up as much experience as you can because you never know what you’ll learn or who you’ll meet. I also encourage you to raise your hand and ask questions while you have an abundance of knowledgeable professionals at your disposal. They have all been in your shoes before!