Hi everyone! My name is Catherine Ladson (she/her) and I am beyond thrilled to be traveling to Dublin, Ireland tomorrow evening. I have just completed my sophomore year at the University of Pittsburgh, where I am majoring in Marketing at the College of Business Administration, as well as pursuing certificates in Leadership & Ethics and Digital Media.
Originally from “outside of Philly” area (in my case, Collegeville, PA), I am an avid reader, coffee connoisseur, and have an immense love for animals (I live on a farm!). Additionally, I have a severe shopping addiction and appreciate any chance to discuss the latest fashion trends or celebrity red-carpet looks.
In my time so far as a Pitt Business student, I have gained hands-on experience in the marketing field as the Public Relations Chair in my sorority, Kappa Kappa Gamma (KKG). In KKG, I post weekly content to our social media pages and am a primary manager of the chapter’s social media presence on platforms such as Instagram and TikTok. I also design graphics and informational flyers for each semester’s recruitment events. In Pitt’s Fashion Business Association, I am the acting Vice President of Administration. In this role I track member attendance and manage logistics for the annual Spring Fashion show in partnership with Pittsburgh’s “Dress for Success” service organization, which strives to provide professional attire to local women’s shelters. In the fall, I will begin my time as one of Pitt Business’s Professional Development Consultants, where I will act as a peer mentor in the Career Center office in Sennott Square, as well as a Teaching Assistant for the BUS020 class for incoming transfer business students. From reviewing resumes, to helping peers find their dream internship, I will be lucky enough to be a friendly face for Pitt Business and all the opportunties the college has to offer.
I am over the moon to be a part of this years International Internship Program in Dublin. Growing up in a dominantly Irish-Catholic family, I have been told for years of all the rich history, culture, art, and beautiful scenery Ireland has to offer. Through this program I hope to obtain hands-on experience in the business world of Ireland, broaden my cultural horizons, and learn first-hand what life is like in a country that is different than one that I have known for my whole life. I choose this program specifically because it perfectly mixes my desire to learn more about Irish culture and to further develop my skills as a future business leader. Additionally, I dream of one day permanently residing and building a career in Europe, and this is the perfect chance to work towards that dream.
In early June I will begin my time as a Marketing intern at Intrepid Spirits. Intrepid Spirts is a global beverage company that produces and manages a variety of premium brands. Since their establishment in 2013, the company is continuing to grow their portfolio of innovative brands into the most competitive corners of the spirits markets in the world, including from San Francisco, Shanghai, La Paz, and Amsterdam. Some of their top brands include Egan’s Irish Whiskey, Regal Rogue’s “The Ultimate Aperitif”, and Cocalero’s “Sacred Spirits of the Andes”. Connecting with this company and the people in it is will be an incredible opportunity to learn the ins-and-outs of the beverage industry, and I will be able to apply various technical and personal skills I have developed in the classroom to my experiential learning.
In terms of personal growth, I am ready to face the challenge of embracing my own sense of independence in this study abroad experience. Whether it be practicing simple time management in a new setting, meeting new people, or navigating a new city’s transportation systems, I am prepared to go out of my comfort zone and embrace change that can help me grow as a student and as a global citizen. Although a little anxious at the moment, I can already imagine just how fast this program will fly by and how much it will impact my life for years to come. Everyone always says how studying abroad is a life-changing experience, and in a “post-pandemic” (sort-of) world, it has become increasingly obvious to me that life is short and once-in-a-lifetime opportunities such as this program should not be passed up. By the end of this program, I hope I have an even greater sense of empathy, and that I will have a new outlook on life as I begin the second half of my college experience.
I cannot wait to meet everyone and to get started!