Student. Blogger. Musician. Marketer. For a talented woman like Isabella Schiavon '21, the pathway to success seemed golden when she transferred to BW in her junior year. Her can-do attitude, easy-going nature, and penchant for business and the arts provide a natural pathway into an aspiring career field. She had a plan, and things were going accordingly. Then COVID-19 hit.
"As an international student, I was suddenly between two places — my hometown of Curitiba, Brazil, and BW. We were on spring break when I heard we would be finishing the semester remotely. I was at home with my family. I had choices to make about where I was to be during that time and what it meant for me to finish college," she admitted.
Hard choices, but a path forward
"I finished spring semester in Curitiba. I returned to a country that was fast becoming the epicenter of the pandemic, so I couldn't return to the U.S. due to a travel ban. After talking with my family, BW advisor and others, I decided to complete my BW fall semester remotely with the plan to return to campus for the spring semester," noted Schiavon.
"My BW professors have been very helpful. Each of them is using a different method for instruction this semester. The most interesting one has me on a Zoom call projected on a whiteboard in a classroom with in-person students. I like that I can still participate in class discussions and say 'hi' to my friends," she said lightheartedly.
Making her mark coast to coast
Though she was in Brazil this summer, Schiavon's outreach in the U.S. was coast to coast. She worked as a marketing intern for a new tech company in San Francisco. She also was accepted into the New York-based BroadwayWorld's student bloggers program, which provides a platform for college students to have their writing published in the regional section of the industry-elite site.
The blog opportunity was a coveted coup for the marketing and arts management and entrepreneurship major interested in the entertainment industry, more specifically Broadway show promotion. Her posts covered topics like her legacy passion for the arts and why she believes BW's arts management and entrepreneurship program excels in career preparation. Also valuable to her list of summer experiences was a consulting project with Dobama Theatre in Cleveland that enabled her to put together a social media strategy to elevate the presence of the 60-year-old equity theatre.
A passion for big boots
"My entryway into the wonderful experiences I've had at BW came just two weeks after arriving on campus last year. My incredible advisor Bryan Bowser asked if I wanted to join a group of students who would be doing the marketing and educational outreach for the academic premiere of 'Kinky Boots,'" she recalled.
"We created the #BootsatBW campaign, where we took pictures of the iconic red boots in front of and inside important buildings and posted them on social media. We shot and edited interview videos that helped boost ticket sales, resulting in a sold-out run. Our work reached Jujamcyn Theaters President Jordan Roth, who engaged in an Instagram post," she emphasized.
"Being part of 'Kinky Boots' was everything I could have hoped for to move my career forward," she said emphatically. "From the moment I decided to come to BW, my goal was to combine a major in marketing with my passion for the arts. For this Brazilian transfer student hungry for opportunities, I am having so many amazing experiences that are helping me get to where I want to go."
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