Golin has announced Megan Duncan as the winner of its second annual Golin Unternship, an unconventional internship program allowing one college graduate to get paid to take on real world experiences outside the confines of the office. After a summer filled with new perspectives, Duncan will begin work in the Golin office of her choice in North America where she will apply her newly acquired insights to Golin’s culture and client work.
In her winning submission, Duncan, a senior at Pepperdine University, mesmerized the agency with her unique Unternship idea to inspire and be inspired by six different cultures across the U.S. over the course of six weeks. She is dubbing it the “Illuminate Project.” She believes this opportunity will allow her to explore the differences between sub-cultures, and through that, she hopes to truly illuminate the connecting strand that ties us all together.
As chronicled in Golin CEO Fred Cook‘s book, Improvise: Unconventional Career Advice from an Unlikely CEO, the unconventional nature of Cook’s life experiences and unusual career path—pool hustler, chauffeur, tour guide, rock band agent and doorman, to name a few – played a critical role in developing the agency’s new approach to finding Millennial talent.
“In its first year, the Unternship exceeded our expectations. Since Akin completed his journey, he has brought unique perspective to the work we do for our clients every day,” said Cook. “Megan’s concept for her Unternship journey and her willingness to ‘Go All In’ during the interview process leaves me confident that the Unternship will continue to be a success.”
As part of the nationwide search, the top three finalists were flown to Chicago for interviews with the leadership team. In a plot twist, each candidate was surprised with an afternoon exercise to test his or her improvisational skills. Equipped with $40 in cash, the finalists were given a bold challenge to spend the next two hours having an “unlikely experience” in the Windy City. Upon their return, each candidate had only 30 minutes to prepare a memorable presentation for an entire room filled with Golin team members.
Starting in June, Duncan will be paid to spend the summer on her unconventional adventure, sharing real-time insights with Golin and others via videos, blogs and social media. After six weeks, Duncan will return to a full-time, paid position at Golin.
“I’m excited to have the opportunity to encounter such a variety of subcultures at the local level—to open my mind, illuminate new perspectives, hear incredible stories and explore alongside those who know a place best,” Duncan said. “I’m looking forward to inviting others to join the adventure every step of the way through social media as I travel through different cities and encounter unlikely circumstances.”