Name: Marie Dugo
Job Title/description: Marketing Coordinator for NBC Owned Television Stations
College/Major: Vassar College/ Media Studies
Twitter Handle: @MarieDugo
What was your first entry-level job in your field and how did you get it?
Marie Dugo: I actually interned at NBCUniversal twice: first at MSNBC Media Relations in the summer of 2009 and again the following summer at NBC Entertainment. These two internships gave me experience in both the news and entertainment sides of the company, which is very similar to the aim of the Page Program. By rotating through different 12-week assignments as a Page, the program gives you access to and experience in several of the departments located in 30 Rock and the tri-state area. All Pages give the Studio Tours and assist in audience coordination for Late Night with Jimmy Fallon, Saturday Night Live and Dr. Oz, but then apply to assignments in departments aligned with their interests. I was lucky enough to also have assignments at The TODAY Show, The Macy*s Thanksgiving Day Parade and NBC Owned TV Stations, where I was eventually hired.
Can you tell us more about NBC Owned Television Stations?
MD: NBC Owned Television Stations is the division of NBCUniversal that includes 10 local television stations, their digital channels and websites, a group of out-of-home properties and a production company. The 10 stations produce and deliver compelling and unique local news as well as information and entertainment programming to viewers in the communities they serve: New York, Los Angeles, Chicago, Philadelphia, San Francisco Bay Area, Dallas-Fort Worth, Washington, D.C, Miami, San Diego and Connecticut. The goal is to connect with local audiences anytime and anywhere.
What’s a typical day like for you? What does your job entail?
MD: I essentially manage communication between HQ here at 30 Rock and the creative services departments at the 10 stations. We are responsible for the branding of the stations, which includes the graphics during newscasts, commercials that promote the station, the talent and programming. We take NBC’s initiatives and connect them to our local viewers with each station’s brand. I keep tabs on everything!
What is one thing you wish you knew about your industry when you first started out that you know now?
MD: Every part of the media industry is interconnected. My experiences in public relations, social media, editorial, production, entertainment and consumer relations all contribute to my current role. The broader your perspective is, the more successful you will be.
Who is one person who changed your professional life for the better?
MD: It all started with my mom. She inspired me with her own career, but she was also a member of New York Women in Communications, Inc. and introduced me to the organization. I applied for and was awarded my first NYWICI scholarship in 2007. Through the organization, I was introduced to a group of women who are accomplished and dedicated to helping each other grow. I learned- and am still learning- all about the industry and professionalism in general from NYWICI’s events and members. It is a fantastic organization that I could go on for hours about!
Is there a quote you live by?
MD: “Work hard, play hard” truly applies to the media industry. As a Page, a typical workweek consisted of six 12-hour days. Was I exhausted? Sure. However, I was also doing cool things like watching Coldplay’s sound check for TODAY’s Summer Concert Series after escorting them to the stage. Would that have happened if I didn’t wake up at 4 AM to work the show? Definitely not! Can I complain? Absolutely not!
What is the best part of your job?
MD: I am learning as much as I am contributing. It’s an amazing feeling to go home with every night.
Where do you see yourself in 10 years? Do you have a dream job?
MD: I’ve gone with the flow thus far and it’s led me to an amazing place, so I’ll be doing that for the next 10 years. That being said, I would love to still be at NBC Owned TV Stations, but perhaps in a creative services department at the station level to get into more of the execution side of local news marketing.
What advice would you give to a 20-something with similar aspirations?
MD: Since I am a 20-something myself, this is really the advice in my mirror every day: live in the moment. We don’t know exactly where we’re heading, so savor the present. Talk to the people you’re around and learn from their experiences, whether they are a peer or a veteran. Never stop learning and you’ll never stop growing as a person and as a professional. We’ve got a long way to go, but let’s make it a great journey every step of the way!