Alum of the Month

Elly Lacey

Elly Lacey

March 2013

New York Program

September 2011 Intake

What and where did you study before your Mountbatten internship?
English BA at Royal Holloway, University of London...but that hadn't been for a while, I'd been in Entertainment PR for the previous 4 years.

What made you apply for the Mountbatten programme?
I had always wanted to live and work in New York, and it seemed like the perfect time to do it. It was a 'now or never' type of thing!

Describe your sponsor company and your role within it.
I was Marketing Director at Impact International, an international learning and development firm. I set up and managed their social media channels, wrote copy, developed their marketing automation system and CRM, organised events and assisted on leadership development programmes.

What was the highlight/most memorable moment of your working experience during this year?
Seeing the view over the Hudson from my desk on the 30th floor for the first time. Walking up Broadway everyday to the office. Oh and that trip to Hawaii...need I say more?!

What was the social highlight/most memorable moment during this year?
There are so many. Christmas was spent in a cabin on a frozen lake and we tobogganed on Christmas Day - that's something I'll never forget. The Weekend of Ridiculousness when we cycled through Central Park, walked The Highline, ate tapas, danced at Brooklyn Bowl, ate pancakes, had a pillow fight in Washington Square Park, watched the Easter Bonnet parade and sunbathed at Rockaway. Roof Parties. New York Cares Day. Fire Island. That was pretty good too...I'm getting nostalgic, I'd better stop.

Please share a little wisdom/philosophy that you acquired during your internship
Can I do 4?!
1. Sometimes the scariest leaps are the best ones - my ex-boss told me that after I told her I wanted to go on Mountbatten. She was so right.
2. Don't waste a second. New York doesn't.
3. "Everybody needs beauty as well as bread" - John Muir (discovered on a bench, overlooking the boating lake in Central Park and very appropriate when you're on an intern's salary)
4. Sometimes you have to go away to come back again.

If you could change anything about your internship, what would it be?
I would have done anything to squeeze a few more months out of that visa.

What happened after completing the year - what did you do next?
I burst into tears in front of the Bethesda Fountain and then I jumped on a bus and headed south. I fulfilled my lifelong ambition of a cross country from east to west coasts at the end of September.

Where are you now in your working life and what do you do?
My experience in New York gave me a lot more confidence in my own professional abilities, so much so that I am now working as a freelance PR. But if anyone needs some PR from the end of March do get in touch!

Do you have any future plans that you would like to realise & what are they (career & social)?
I'd like to get to New Orleans - a hurricane prevented us on our roadtrip but I'll get there eventually. Career-wise, New York taught me a lot - what I was good at, what I enjoy, the kind of person I am - so I'm thinking differently and about long term goals but I'd rather not tempt fate by telling you about them just yet!

Is there any other information that you would like to be included?
I wrote a blog whilst I was in New York and then on my cross-country road trip, taking a picture a day to summerise my time and it's my best keepsake. Maybe it'll bring back some memories for you too!
Twitter: @EllyLacey & LinkedIn