by Amy K. Lavender

As thousands of students are getting ready to begin their school year, Carrollton native and Central High School graduate Emily Newborn is saying her final farewell to the University of West Georgia. In late July, she walked across the stage during summer commencement to collect her master’s degree in management after finishing the one-year MBA program. Now, she is preparing to start her career at Meeting Expectations in Atlanta as a marketing specialist.

Emily Newborn“I’m so excited to be finished and starting the next phase in my life,” Newborn said.

Meeting Expectations provides marketing and advertising services for events, associations and other various clients, such as Arby’s.

“Two weeks before graduation, I landed my job,” Newborn said. “I couldn’t have asked for better timing.”

Newborn says her many experiences at UWG helped prepare her for the working world, especially her recent internship at Sportsplex in Carrollton. Newborn’s professor, Dr. John Upson, held a contest open to all undergraduates and graduates in UWG’s Richards College of Business, inviting them to come up with a six-week marketing plan for the local business that included social media. Emily was one of three finalists.

“I broke it down into what I would do each week,” she explained. “I had goals that I wanted to achieve, and I built a SWOT (Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats) analysis to show them what they could be doing.”

Ultimately, Sportsplex decided Newborn was their pick, and she spent part of her summer implementing the plan that she developed. As a result, she proved to herself and others that she is capable of seeing a project through to completion.

“The internship showed I have great project management skills,” she said. “It showed I could come up with a plan and execute it on my own because there was no one to hold my hand. I had to make sure the plan I developed could be implemented alone, and its success was entirely up to me. That was cool because I had never gotten to see a project all the way through by myself before other than class assignments.”

Newborn says she feels that her internship helped her get her job with Meeting Expectations, and it helped build her confidence in her abilities. But Newborn admits that she’d already come a long way in that arena thanks to study abroad and competition opportunities she had while at UWG.

“I feel like every challenge that I’ve faced has helped boost my confidence,” she said.

During her sophomore year, Newborn was one of four students who traveled to Mumbai, India, to compete in the 21st Annual International Economic Convention. While there, she and the team presented on China’s rising economy. They researched all aspects of the country’s development, which took the better part of a year, and wrote a 35-page paper. In the end, they brought home the gold in all six categories.

“We got to come home with every first place trophy they had,” Newborn recalled. “Dr. Faye McIntyre [dean of Richards College of Business] bought us a suitcase and paid to have it shipped back because the awards weighed five pounds each!”

According to Newborn , the India trip was the beginning of a love for travel.

“It was amazing,” she admitted. “India is my favorite place I’ve been, so far. When we got there, after we completed the competition, we got to hang out with people our own age. They took us to a Bollywood movie, they took us shopping, and we got to hang out at their college. I made some great friends there.”

Since going to Mumbai, Newborn has also traveled to Ireland and China with UWG’s study abroad programs. She said she couldn’t pass up such a great opportunity to see other cultures first hand – including the country she and Team India had based their research on.

“Going places like India and China, I never would have done that by myself. I got to go to India for free – I just had to work my butt off,” she laughed. “And we came home winners, and it was an amazing experience. I honestly don’t think I would have gotten the same experience at another university.”

Upson, a professor of management at UWG, says Newborn is a shining example of the results that hard work and engagement can yield for students.

“Emily is an outstanding student, and we're all very proud of her,” he said. “She has really taken advantage of the extracurricular activities that we have developed for our students. A good portion of her learning has come from outside the classroom, and we're so excited that she is utilizing what she's learned here to move forward and start a career. We can't wait to see where she goes from here.”

Once Newborn starts her job in Atlanta next week, she says she’ll start saving her money for her next trip to get up close and personal with her favorite animal.

“Next, I want to go to Thailand,” she said, “because that’s where the elephants are.”

Posted on August 24, 2016