UMSL senior Evan Miguel works on his laptop at the Office of Multicultural Student Services. Miguel will be attending the American Advertising Federation’s Most Promising Multicultural Student Program. (Photo by August Jennewein)

One University of Missouri–St. Louis advertising student is about to get a taste of the Big Apple.

Evan Miguel, a senior studying advertising at UMSL, will travel to New York City through the American Advertising Federation’s Most Promising Multicultural Students Program. The program takes student members to New York in February for four days of networking, meeting with recruiters and educational seminars designed to give participants an inside track on the advertising industry.

Miguel is enthusiastic about the advertising field, but it originally wasn’t in his plans. He’d first thought of being a writer, but others began to recommend advertising based on his sense of humor. After taking an introductory class, Miguel realized he’d found a good fit.

“Ever since I was a kid, I’ve always thought up premises for skits, television shows and short-form comedy,” Miguel said.  “A lot of that translates well into good advertising if you know how to apply it.”

The American Advertising Federation selects 50 students for the program from more than 200 chapters. Applicants must submit essays, develop taglines and hashtags and other materials to be considered.

Increasing diversity in the advertising field is essential to creating ads that audiences can respond to.

“If everybody comes from the same background, no one’s going to be able to think differently,” Miguel said. “For people to think critically, it’s important to have people from diverse backgrounds.”

On the UMSL campus, Miguel is also involved as a research assistant for the linguistics program and an intern in the Office of Multicultural Student Services. Elsewhere on campus, he’s involved in MindTrex, which focuses on developing innovators, and co-hosts the show Blood Sugar Beat on the The U, the university radio station. He also hopes his Spanish skills will be useful in his career.

Even though he’s especially interested in advertising for the tech or music industries, Miguel is open to working in numerous fields. He hopes the varied facets of his background will allow him to both offer and respect different perspectives.

“I am interested in the challenge to be able to step outside of myself and my own interests,” Miguel said. “A big part of the job is that you have to get into mindset of the person you’re trying to reach and what their interests are.”

The UMSL Experience

Rachel Webb

Rachel Webb