Katie Rapp: Applying Business Skills to Help Manage the Met’s Education Department

Besides the initiatives in which she was involved, another unique aspect of Katie Rapp's internship was wandering the empty galleries before the museum opened for the day.

Katie Rapp is an MBA candidate entering her second year in the program.  She has a strong interest in the arts and non-profit sectors.  Her ideal position after graduation would allow her to apply her business acumen to cultural non-profit organizations, helping them operate more efficiently to effectively serve the public and realize their missions.

This summer I interned with the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City for 10 weeks within the Education Administration department.  The Met’s Education department works to help visitors of all ages and levels of artistic knowledge and experience interact with the collections on display at the museum through a variety of programs such as gallery talks, exhibition tours, lectures, and courses.  Administration, a division of the Education department, supports the department’s infrastructure, processes, and resources so the museum can effectively provide educational tools and programs to all interested visitors who enter the museum.

Throughout my internship I worked on a museum-wide project to implement a new customer relationship management system as well as an event management system.  My role on these projects was to learn the functionality of the systems and lend my skills in various ways to prepare the systems for use by the Education department, enter data, assist in training, and customize the systems to meet the needs of the department.  I also spearheaded the implementation of a project management system within the Education department to help streamline the workflow and make the department more efficient so resources, both human and financial, could be used more effectively.  Besides these projects, I completed various tasks that helped me learn the organizational structure of the museum and introduced me to administrative management of a major non-profit institution.

The best part of my internship was getting to see concrete results of my work through the realization of a project from start to finish, with the implementation of the project management system.  Over the course of the program I interacted with various departments across the museum, allowing me to more fully understand the operations and structure of the institution.  My internship at the Met allowed me to apply my business knowledge to tasks previously foreign to me, such as the implementation of technological systems, but was a great introduction to avenues I can explore after graduation to help non-profits succeed.  One of the biggest perks of working at the Met was arriving at the museum each morning before it opened to the public, wandering the empty galleries by myself!

Read about the summer internship experiences of other Crosby MBA students here.

Students Spent Busy Summers at Home and Abroad

Over the summer, students of the Crosby MBA program applied their knowledge beyond the classroom — to real-world experiences close to home and around the globe.

Gaurav Ahuja

I worked on eight projects dealing with retail operations support at H&R Block corporate headquarters in Kansas City.

Some of my duties included:

  • managing content for pages accessed by internal clients
  • working on process improvements in Puerto Rico
  • reducing storage room costs
  • instituting a level of additional support between field users and the technical support center
  • organizing the summer executives meeting

Tim Cunningham

I consulted for one of the Financial Times’ business units.  I helped it understand its core capabilities, customer needs and segmentation, and competitors’ positions in the market.  I  facilitated a number of planning sessions to determine in which direction the unit should head.

The outcome was a number of reports and a presentation. The business unit has since adopted some of the recommendations.

Sam DeAtley

I studied abroad in Italy, through CIMBA, with Ryan Frederking and Fei Wang.

According to its website, CIMBA is committed to providing an innovative learning environment and to the development of superior educational programs to better prepare today’s young professionals for the global marketplace.  More information about MU’s involvement with the program is available here.

Kelly Eaton

I interned at the Kroenke Group, which owns and manages more than 200 properties nationwide.  I started in mid-May as one of the first members of the accounting production team.

Accounting production is responsible for:

  • receiving vendor invoices for work performed at all properties
  • entering invoices in the system and cutting checks to vendors
  • depositing rent checks into property specific bank accounts
  • paying utility bills
  • tracking insurance information for all vendors
  • working with accountants to be sure account balances stay positive

Whitney Lange

I was a marketing and fundraising volunteer intern for an English school in a village in Cambodia.  I researched ways to receive more financial aid from a larger group of donors, created fundraising campaigns, and redesigned the graphics, information, and language on all marketing tools.

In this photo, I am with the staff of both Salariin Kampuchea (Khmer for “Schools in Cambodia”) and Apsara Centrepole Hotel, receiving a donation of toothbrushes, toothpastes, and hand soaps for the students.

Sean McLerran

At Gasket Engineering, I have been an assistant to the plant manager.  I helped with space utilization as a new process and product was being introduced.  I also worked with CAD drawings from customers to help produce the products the most efficient way possible.  I also helped work on a presentation for a customer on a sale we just made.

Caleb Phillips

I can finally say I’ve taken a selfie with a Fortune 200 CEO and a kangaroo.

In all seriousness, my summer as an intern at DISH Network was nothing short of an adventure.  Between working on projects with executives and hiking 14-ers on the weekends, the experiences I have gained this summer will stay with me for the rest of my life.

I’m excited to bring back what I’ve learned to my second year in the program.

Katie Rapp

As an intern at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York, I worked in the Education Administration department. Throughout my internship I have completed projects that include implementing a project management system within my department​ and assisting in the implementation of a large, museum-wide technology systems update.

The woman with me in this photo is Alaine Arnott. She is an alumna of the program and my boss at the Met.

Chase Sanders

I worked on vendor relations, recruitment, business development, and customer experience at Red Frog Events in Chicago.

I got to travel the country for some of our events.

Elliott Stam

I went to Cape Town, South Africa, with a group of journalism students for three weeks to interview people who were involved in the struggle against Apartheid.  Some of the people we interviewed had been members of the militant wing of the African National Congress.  One was Nelson Mandela’s lead security officer and another was the sibling of a deceased ANC leader from District 6 who had survived assassination attempts.  Others had been imprisoned by Apartheid security forces and tortured or placed on death row, or both. Besides interviewing people, another goal of the trip was to be the first group to establish a relationship between the Missouri School of Journalism and the University of Western Cape, one of the most politically active universities during Apartheid.  UWC has an extensive collection of newspapers, posters, and other documents housed in its Mayibuye Archives, and this was another point of interest on our trip.  We spent a lot of time digging through these archives, and I believe there’s an effort to help digitize this content so future generations have access to it as well.

Although not through the journalism program, MU has had a relationship with UWC since the 1980s.  The MU international center coordinated this trip, but it was not a class. It was more of a project that, hopefully, will foster a lasting relationship between UWC and the journalism school. Everyone who went has been assigned stories to write that should be published this fall.

Left: The “Table mountain cute fluff” is a Dassi, a hilarious creature that jumps around on the rocks of Table Mountain and any other dangerous rock faces they find.

Below: The whole group stands at the so-called most southwestern tip of South Africa.

 

At the end of the trip in South Africa we went up north to Kruger National Park for a safari. On the safari we saw elephants, zebra, lions, rhinoceros, and giraffes.  It was at the animal refuge that we actually got up close and personal.  The cheetah we got to pet even purred.
After returning to the United States, I washed my clothes and packed my bags for Chicago, where I had an internship with Leo Burnett, in its optimization department.  This basically means I did marketing analytics for them all summer.  I worked on an account that houses the organization’s biggest database, so I got great experience working on data analysis.  Something that’s really beneficial about this internship for me is I get to see how the business works across multiple disciplines.  I interacted with people from account management, creative direction, production, optimization, and strategy.  It was a steep learning curve.

Jacob Taylor

I interned for Liberty Mutual Insurance Company, a Fortune 500 company, in the Dallas area.

My main internship project was to analyze travel expense data for their auto claims division.  The internship is designed to lead into the company’s field management development program.

Fei Wang

I studied abroad in Italy, through CIMBA, with Sam DeAtley and Ryan Frederking.

Josh Nichol-Caddy: Applying MBA Lessons to Redefine a Publication

The Crosby MBA program is a full-time program; however, part-time attendance is available for qualifying students. For more than two years, Joshua Nichol-Caddy has been a part-time student  in the Crosby MBA Program and taught full time at Stephens College and advised their student-run publication. This fall he will become a full-time student to finish his degree.

Although I have been taking one and two classes at a time since January of 2012, I will
be enrolled as a full-time student in the Crosby MBA program when classes begin
in August.  Before that, I divided my
time between attending classes at MU and teaching at Stephens College, another
institution of higher education in Columbia.
Stephens College is just up College Avenue, but it sometimes felt worlds away — especially the semester my schedule allowed just 15 minutes to get from one campus to the other, when the two stoplights I hit en route seemed to stay  red forever. Then there were the times I literally had to be two places at once.

But my dual life had advantages: primarily, the opportunity to apply business
concepts immediately to my working life.

I graduated with a master’s degree in journalism from MU in May of 2011. That summer, while working as a reporter for the business section of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, I was hired by Stephens College to teach media courses and advise Stephens Life, a student-run publication about life at Stephen’s College. I hoped the  opportunity would help me synthesize my educational and professional  experiences. I had studied radio,  television and film as an undergraduate at Northwestern University, working for  a couple of years at an Internet startup as a video editor and web designer  after graduation. Through various freelance jobs and internships, particularly at the Palm Beach Post, I further developed my ability to produce digital content. Still, I spent much of my first semester working with a staff of five to  produce what was then a biweekly tabloid, pulling frequent all nighters to  “feed the beast.”

It was unsustainable, and Stephens Life was better than that. But what should I do
with that revelation?

The MBA program helped me consider Stephens Life as more than its print product. As a media organization and brand, Stephens Life needed a new mission.

Guided by seminars and management courses and advised by professors, I fundamentally changed what Stephens Life did and how it did it. Defining a goal to deliver compelling and  relevant content, Stephens Life moved online, printing only “the best of  the web” at semester’s end as a glossy magazine.This required reorganization, and I flattened the Stephens Life’s hierarchy. The elimination of positions caused blowback, but I had learned how to address that, too. And I instituted a  staff evaluation system, developing contracts in which staff members identified the personal, team, and organizational goals that would influence their final assessments.

Lessons from marketing courses helped to improve Stephens Life’s reach across
campus, and beyond. Previously unfamiliar with Excel, I used finance and data analysis assignments to develop  workbooks for tracking initiatives and maintaining budgets and schedules.

All of these courses taught me how to define success, making it easier to determine
whether individual actions facilitate or hinder progress toward a goal.

The results of this approach are clear. Besides an attractive and informative website and magazine, Stephens Life’s staff of nearly 20 now boasts an active social media presence, weekly television broadcast, and an auxiliary lifestyle magazine. Revenues from subscriptions and advertisements are up, and Stephens Life has developed partnerships with local boutiques, restaurants, and music venues.

The transition from full-time faculty member to full-time student comes with a bit
of apprehension, but that is far outweighed by my eagerness to see what results
from immersing myself in the Crosby MBA program.