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Passionate Wyoming business introduces UW student to Cheyenne community, creativity and collaboration through internship.
By Heather Baker
The marketing agency West Edge Collective shines as an example of succeeding in business and succeeding in giving back to Wyoming’s community. Owned and directed by Wyomingite Chad Willet, West Edge meets its clients with an eclectic and creative marketing approach.
In early 2020, Desirée Brothe, community engagement manager for West Edge, reached out to the University of Wyoming to begin an annual internship program. When the pandemic rattled most plans, Brothe and her colleagues persevered. They finalized opportunities for Wyoming students to experience a real-world work environment.
“Everyone at West Edge has a passion and drive for developing creatives for the future, especially those living in a rural community,” says Brothe. “We understand the importance that opportunities like internships generate for aspiring creatives.”
The program began with high school-level internships that expanded into college-level internships during summer 2021. With over 20 employees versed in a number of analytical and creative skills, West Edge hosts a variety of learning opportunities.
“West Edge wants to leverage passionate students by giving them the tools they need for a creative career,” says Jesse Sevier, UW alumnus and the client services director at West Edge. “We hope to hire good employees who are passionate about this area of the country.” It is evident that Sevier has the same love for developing Cheyenne’s workforce and community as Brothe.
West Edge’s community-based creative atmosphere attracted UW graphic design student Kosta Pappas: “West Edge’s work environment taught me an awareness of client and event deadlines. My advice for students looking to intern there—go all in and try your best because your passion will lead to an incredible amount of learning in a short amount of time. The employees at West Edge are great teachers.”
The end result of Kosta’s internship included six augmented reality murals from Downtown Cheyenne, creative collateral for a community event, learning the ins and outs of running an event, and learning how to work on a design team. For examples of Kosta’s work with West Edge Collective, see the photograph of a mural above.
“Summer 2022 will open up our first college-only internship program,” Brothe says. “This will be an eight-week program with interns in graphic design, videography, augmented reality, marketing and other digital media backgrounds. Ultimately, interns will spend time on video shoots, attending client meetings, creating projects and much more.”
For further information regarding West Edge Collective’s internship program, visit the internship’s webpage (https://westedge.us/l/summer-college-internship-program/)