AAF Alumni Spotlight – Jake Cooper

By Jane Lee

Originally from Buffalo Grove, Illinois, Cooper graduated with a degree in advertising at the University of Illinois before he landed his job at Trisect. Before graduating Cooper played in an alternative pop band called Good Luck Jane, not only performing at the Canopy Club, but even appearing on WGN News and ABC News.

Currently he is located in the West Loop of Chicago and holds the account executive position as the Co-op Program Lead Manager for Kawasaki Motors Corporation, USA.

Cooper says his experiences working for Trisect have been fun.

"If you have to be somewhere for forty hours a week, you might as well try to work at a place that values having fun and making work an enjoyable place to be," he said.

He believes that the advertising industry attracts this generation and values intriguing work, the working culture and a balance in work life.

"Trisect definitely has one of the best cultures that I've ever been around," he said. "Ping-pong matches whenever you feel like it and a cold beer at the end of the day go along way!"

With fun times come challenges, but with challenges come growth and that's what Cooper realized as he joined this industry. He developed and strengthened his analytic skills, client communication, problem solving and project management skills with his experience at Trisect. He says you always have to be on your game in this field as the responsibilities themselves shed its own unique challenges.

"Each day working on the Kawasaki business presents unique challenges and opportunities as well," he said. "We are in charge of managing multi-million-dollar annual co-op budget and are responsible for the oversight and disbursement of those funds."

One piece of advice he wants to emphasize is networking. He says people should network in companies that they're interested in and email HR to see if there are opportunities for job shadowing positions.

"Set up a lunch date with someone to learn more about the company," he says. "Yes, this might be awkward, but it will be worth it."

He says the more exposure you get and the more you want the job, more people will realize and offer you a variety of opportunities.