What If… You Were a Campus Ambassador

Camille Beredjick

For every stack of brochures sitting on a table outside the Norris bookstore, there’s a campus representative hoping you’ll take one. Many companies hire student ambassadors to promote products or services on campus and to try to reach the college demographic. Weinberg senior Alexis Echevarria spends 15 to 20 hours a week working as NU’s only Dell student representative. Most of the time, she’s at a table in Norris, talking to interested students and handing out the occasional Dell freebie.

“I just sit here and people come chat with me and I give them free stuff,” Echevarria says. She started working with Dell in July after the company found her resume on Crewbuilder. She’s in charge of promoting delluniversity.com and keeping NU students in the loop about Dell’s student discount opportunity. “My main purpose is to just sit here and let students know it exists,” Echevarria says. She hands out flyers at student events whenever she can and recently hosted her own event, a Windows 7 launch party. Norris rules prohibit student reps like Echevarria from calling out to passersby, so she waits for students to approach her for information. She’s paid by the hour, with a potential bonus if she’s Campus Rep of the Week. “There are also contests that I’m required to participate in, but they usually have some kind of monetary reward associated with them,” she says.

Weinberg sophomore Emily Wang became a representative for makeup company mark. in July. She is one of 26 mark. representatives on campus and is responsible for hosting mark. parties, where guests sample and buy products, and promoting mark. on campus. “College campuses are really opportune places to host parties because it’s a high concentration of customers in such a small locale,” Wang says. Her weekly hours depend on her class schedule, so mark. work doesn’t interfere with homework. “It’s never too much of a time commitment and when things settle down in classes and (are) more low-key, you can put more time into it,” Wang says. She tries not to talk about her job as an ambassador to friends unless they ask, but it’s still a priority, especially because she’s paid on commission. “Becoming a mark. college rep is all about productivity and self-motivation,” she says.

For some students, being a campus ambassador serves a purpose beyond business experience and a paycheck. Weinberg senior Anna Gutina is one of three campus campaign coordinators for Teach For America, a nonprofit that recruits recent college graduates to teach in low-income communities with the goal of bridging the academic achievement gap between students from low- and high-income families. Gutina is responsible for publicizing Teach For America’s goals and informing student leaders, usually juniors and seniors, about opportunities within the program. She also started a Teach for America student group so underclassmen could get involved. The group meets regularly and serves as a “street team for Teach For America,” Gutina says. The group hosts events like student panels to inform students about the organization. “What we offer to our members is a chance to go to Chicago to actually sit in on classrooms where there are Teach For America teachers,” she says. The greatest thing Gutina took from working as a Teach For America rep, she says, is inspiration. “The alumni of Teach For America, they really stay passionate about this cause outside of the two-year commitment,” Gutina says. “It’s not just about teaching. This experience at Teach For America will actually impact your life.”