Omnicom executives invite Murray State faculty, students for presentation

Four members of Murray State’s department of journalism and mass communications have been invited to New York City on December 3 to give a presentation about the department to human resource directors of all the Omnicom Group companies.

Gill Welsch, senior lecturer and head of the advertising major and Bob Valentine, senior lecturer in journalism and mass communications, are speaking to the human resource directors of Omnicom. Students, Kirby Feldkamp and Abigail Goss, former Omnicom interns, will accompany them.

Welsch said they have been working with Bob Norsworthy, executive vice president of Diversified Agency Services, a division of Omnicom group in New York, to set up internships for Murray State students.

“He has been working with our students for the last two spring semesters, helping us bring a more professional focus to things,” Welsch said. “Norsworthy helped about 20 Murray State students get internships with Omnicom in cities such as Washington D.C., New York, Boston and Chicago.”

Omnicom Group is a global holding company which owns approximately 230 companies engaged in advertising, marketing and public relations.

Welsch said the original plans were for the human resources directors to visit Murray State but things did not work out, so they asked Murray State to come to them. He said Omnicom wants to hear from himself and Bob Valentine because the students who interned with them did such a good job, they want to find out how Murray State produces such diligent students.

“Our kids went up there and they worked,” Welsch said. “They asked for work, they always expressed how they wanted more work, and it just knocked the socks off of them.”

Abigail Goss and Kirby Feldkamp, two students who interned with Omnicom, were asked to join Welsch and Valentine on their trip to New York. Valentine said they chose the two students based on their availability and who could renew their relationships beneficially.

“We could have chosen from a number of students who interned with Omnicom,” Valentine said. “But those were folks whose academics are in a position right now that they can spare the time.”

Valentine said while they are in New York, they will be meeting people face-to-face, explaining things about the training program at Murray State and the vetting process by which Omnicom interns are selected. He said the purpose of the meeting is not only for the benefit of Murray State, but for Omnicom’s benefit as well.

“They are having a meeting of HR directors in order to improve their networking cooperation within Omnicom, but also to get information that will make them more effective at their task,” Valentine said. “One of their concerns is the new wave of young people coming into the business; who are they, what makes them tick, how are they different from anybody else. So they have asked us to respond to the question: what should we look for and what is going to be different about this new wave of students?”

Valentine also said a former Murray State student, Leah Kirchoff, who currently works for Omnicom because of her internship with them in Chicago, will be at the meeting as well. He said she will be there to talk about her experience as a student transitioning into the workforce with Omnicom.

Story by Alex Berg, Staff writer

The group will return on December 5.