Meet Kelsey Leighton, a senior at Westfield State University, who has joined us as an intern for the spring semester. Kelsey jumped right in, and started working on marketing events. We love her enthusiasm and creativity. We also like her punctuality and follow-up on details — essential traits in the world of marketing and events.

Where did you grow up? 

I grew up in Sandwich, MA on Cape Cod my entire life. In October my family relocated to Marshfield, MA where most of my family now lives. My mom had always wanted to be closer to her family, which is why she decided to move here now that us kids are all grown up and out of the house.

 When did you realize you wanted to study marketing and communications?

When I enrolled at Westfield State University as a Freshman, I was very uncertain as to which direction I wanted to pursue for a career. I was enrolled in a couple of classes that were in the communication department and I had found myself really enjoying these classes. I then did my research and began looking into the communication department more and seeing what directions I could go in. My amazing advisor Professor Maddy Cahill really opened my eyes to Public Relations and how she thought I would do amazing things on this career path. I looked more into Public Relations and knew that was something I could excel in. I did not pick up Marketing until my junior year when I took Marketing Management. I ended that class with an A+ and loved every minute of it. I knew that was another direction that I wanted to learn more about, and since then it has stuck with me!

What is your ultimate career goal?

I would absolutely love to start my own event planning and marketing business somewhere where I am happy and can see myself settling down. I have always had a passion for sports and wanting to work with athletes, so doing something along those lines would be a dream come true as well.

 What is the biggest item on your bucket list?

To me the biggest item on my bucket list would be to travel around the world. I think while I am young, traveling would be a once in a lifetime experience and I should do it while I still can. My grandfather encouraged me all the time before he passed away to just go and travel, so for him this is one thing on my bucket list that I want to make sure I do!

 Where do you like to travel?

I love to travel; I am always booking new trips for myself, so I have something to look forward to. My family and I take a vacation every summer up to Kennebunkport, Maine. I know it is so close and just a short drive away, but to me it holds so many important memories that I will cherish forever. I also really enjoy going to Florida and other warm places to lie on the beach.

 Where do you get your creative ideas?

I like to imagine the best of the best scenarios in my head, and I have noticed that this has always kept me so motivated to do my best and succeed in life. I would say when it comes to my creative ideas, I like to bounce ideas off other people and then come up with a creative idea that works best for me. I have also created vision boards with friends that are a collage of inspirational words and pictures that motivate and inspire me.

 Who is the most influential person in your life?

To me the most influential person in my life would be my older sister Jordan. Jordan is the most hard-working person I know, and she proves to everyone around her that she can accomplish anything she puts her mind to. She constantly is proving people wrong, and no matter what, she is always keeping a smile on her face. My sister has helped me become a better person, and I am so grateful for her because of that. My sister is also my best friend, and I am not sure where I would be without her.

What is the best thing about WSU?

The best thing about Westfield State University would have to be the professors here. They all want to see us students succeed in life and work to our highest potential during our time here. I have worked so hard these past four years, but it is all because my professors want the best for us and only want us to learn and grow in our future careers. All my professors have been so helpful with helping me figure out where I want to go with my career, and I cannot imagine where I would be without them. I also have met the best friends here and they are all so supportive of me, and I cannot imagine my life without them now!

 What do you say all the time?

“Don’t knock it until you try it.” I often say this to remind myself that you must try things before you can tell yourself that you don’t like it, or you know it isn’t the right fit for you. I feel that I often get in my head when trying new things and I scare myself away from it, but it is so important to not let fear get in the way of new things in life.

 Favorite quote?

“Our greatest glory is not in never falling, but in rising every time we fall.” – Confucius

What would people be surprised to know about you?

Growing up I really struggled in school, and I was always needing extra help whether it was after school, or during the summer. I feel like people would be surprised to know this about me because once college came around I did better than I ever have before. I have made the Dean’s List almost every semester and I have kept a 3.5 GPA. I really surprised myself most of all and I am so proud of myself for that!

How do you like to start your day?

I like to wake up on the earlier side and just lay down and go on my phone for no more than 10 minutes. After that I like to get up and always make my bed first, because you cannot have a productive day unless your bed is made! I then get myself together and wash my face and do my morning care. After that I like to make myself a cup of coffee and make a healthy breakfast while I watch a quick episode of a show if I have the time.

 What skills and talents do you bring to your internship with Maureen Sullivan Media?

I am always eager to learn new things, so I feel as if I am a good intern to have on the team. Anything Maureen asks me to work on is a learning experience for me so it will benefit me in the end. I am a very hard worker and will always bring my best self forward with anything we’re working on as a team. I have always been someone to ask many clarifying questions to make sure I am doing the right thing, which I believe is a good skill to have because it shows I care and that I am trying to do my best work.

 What do you hope to learn?

I have never worked for an event or held an event like Maureen does for her clients, so I am enjoying learning each step that is taken and how important each step really is. Being in a professional setting really opens my eyes to what my potential everyday job may look like. To me it is so important to be able to see an event being organized firsthand, and how important the advertisement and promotions are to really make an event meet their end goals!

 When do you graduate?

I am all set to graduate this May with a degree in communications, a concentration in public relations and a minor in business management and marketing. I am so excited for what the future may have in store for me!

What are you going to do right after graduation?

After college I will be hoping to land a job in the city of Boston, where my childhood best friend and I are planning on living together. I am hoping to find a job that begins around September 1st, so I can have my summertime to relax and travel!