By: Erin Sikora
Hello Everyone! My name is Erin Sikora and I am the new Marketing Assistant here at The Challenge Program, Inc. in the Pittsburgh office. I am more than ready to get started with my position, but let’s be honest, the first week at any new school or job is always a mix of emotions. You don’t really know what to expect which can be thrilling, but also nerve racking. I am excited about this new adventure in my first post-college job, but I would be lying if I said that the unknowns didn’t scare me just a little bit. After completing my first week at The Challenge Program, Inc. I am happy to report that all of the unknowns, like getting along with co-workers and feeling comfortable in my position, are no longer an issue.
I went to college at Slippery Rock University (Go Rock!) and graduated this past May after earning a B. S. in Integrated Marketing Communication. My major involved different aspects of public relations, marketing and advertising. I joined The Challenge Program, Inc. just one week ago and I am so excited to get started and fill you in on what I’ve been up to so far.
Throughout my first week, in between the normal new employee paperwork, I had my first inside look at the company. I was introduced to the theme of the fall kick-off assembly – “Future Influencers-Why Not Me?”- which will start within the next week when our Program Development Managers travel to over 100 schools. I participated in my first practice run and it made me feel comfortable and confident for future assemblies. I have also been busy writing press releases and creating content for our social media accounts.
I am one of the lucky ones here at TCP because every day I get to hear and post about the success stories that come from high school students taking the challenge. My job has enabled me to get creative with what is being posted on our social media platforms and being able to communicate with the kids that are involved in the program is so much fun! I think something that helps is knowing the audience on each social media platform that I am trying to communicate with because a business partner on LinkedIn is not going to want to see the same content as a teenager on Snapchat.
These behind the scene moments prepared me to attend my very first assemblies at Seneca Valley and Mt. Pleasant. During the assemblies I got to see first-hand how important this program is for the business partners and students. I could feel the excitement building for the students, administration and the business partner as we talked about the cash awards that students could earn by just taking the challenge this year. I truly believe that students are drawn to TCP because this program is really for ANYONE. You do not have to be the top of your class or be perfect in any way to earn one of the awards, you just have to be YOUR best self. That is something that truly still gives me chills when I think about it.
This past week has opened my eyes to all of the amazing work that The Challenge Program, Inc. does and I am eager to continue contributing my ideas and learning.