“I THINK I LEARNED MORE FROM THE CHALLENGING SITUATIONS I FOUND MYSELF IN THAN I EVER DID FROM THE PLACES I WAS CONTENT.”
Title: Manager of Annual Giving
College: Lee University
Major: Piano Performance
First Job: Boston Symphony Orchestra Box office representative
Current Salary: $45,000-$60,000
Erica’s career is a testament to the power of the internship. After initially working with Celebrity Series as an intern, she eventually returned years later to her current role as the Manager of Annual Giving. At Celebrity Series, Erica provides the organization with the resources they need to bring the performing arts to a more inclusive audience.
What do you love about your current job?
I love the dedication the organization has to putting live performance in the community. It’s about providing avenues for the community to discover, explore, and create. Celebrity Series believes in driving change and the positive effects it has on its audience base and the community.
What was your first professional job out of college and what did you learn?
My first professional job was as a box office representative at the Boston Symphony Orchestra. One of the biggest things I learned was the value of communication. Communicating what motivates you, what you think is expected of you, what you expect out of yourself, and what you want your career to accomplish.
What experience in college helped you get to where you are today?
I got a job as a student worker for a professor who was spearheading a chamber music festival project in the area. That opened a lot of doors for me- it was how I got connected with my first internship in California. When I came to BU for grad school the first thing we were told was to try to get internships and network. I wouldn’t have had this job if it weren't for the work I did as an intern.
What advice would you give to a college student looking to build a career as a problem solver?
If you find yourself in a less than desirable work situation, pick out the parts you can learn and grow from, then move on. I learned more from the challenging situations I found myself in than I ever did from the places I was content.
What’s a potential next step in your career?
I would love to be a part of a large organization and watch how change is driven there. I’ve always been involved with small organizations and there are some unique challenges with that environment. I would love to learn how to motivate, manage, and be successful in an environment where not only the challenges are different, but the solutions and perspectives are different as well.