Imperial Native and Double-Major Interns, Volunteers, Studies Abroad
Department of Mass Media
Southeast Missouri State University advertising and public relations double-major Lauren Coombs of Imperial, Mo., is currently interning with Osborn Barr, an advertising agency that works with rural and agricultural advertising, in St. Louis.
“It has been a learning experience from day one,” she said. “I enjoy the environment at an advertising agency and the change in projects it brings.”
At Osborn Barr, Coombs coordinates events with the Monsanto Fund through America’s Farmers Grow Communities and site grants. For the events, she pitches press releases and media advisories to various news outlets.
“I enjoy creating the stories of a brand, either by written work or creative concepts,” she said.
Back at Southeast, Coombs works as a lab assistant in the Information Technology open computer labs around campus.
“This has helped my communication skills, since I assist students with computer programs,” she said.
Also on campus, Coombs is an officer of Alpha Phi Omega Beta Psi, a coed service fraternity.
“This has inspired me to give back to the community and others, while doing it with friends. While being vice president of service, I developed coordination skills by planning all of the service events for our chapter,” she said.
Aside from volunteering with Alpha Phi Omega, Coombs also recently became a big sister for Big Brothers Big Sisters of America.
“I got paired up with my little sister earlier this year, and it has been a learning experience. I am challenged in a new way, since I am trying to teach skills to a younger individual,” she said.
In her spare time in Cape Girardeau, Coombs enjoys visiting the riverfront, because she said it is peaceful there. She said she also enjoys art and usually uses charcoal and soft pastels in her work. Outside of Cape Girardeau, Coombs enjoys traveling, and she said her favorite travel destination is Ireland.
“Even though they speak English in Ireland, it really is a different experience culturally, and they have some of the most beautiful, lush rolling hillsides,” she said.
Coombs lived in Ireland for five months while working on her marketing minor at Southeast’s partner school, the Dublin Institute of Technology. During her time there, she met people from several different countries and traveled to seven other European countries.
After she graduates, Coombs said she plans to work at an advertising agency while working toward her master’s degree. She added that she appreciates the professors in the Department of Mass Media who have encouraged her to do her own research.
“This helped me discover my niche in the career world,” she said, adding, “I have met my greatest support system outside of my family at Southeast. I have friends that encourage and motivate me to a higher level than I could have achieved alone.”
Coombs encourages future Southeast students to do their own research as she did, along with speaking to faculty and staff.
“Professors are a tool,” she said, “but you can discover a job that’s perfect for you.”