We’d like to congratulate Jennifer Coggins for her selection as the first TorchLight Contractor of the Month! TorchLight Contractor of the Month is a new program that recognizes top-notch efforts by our contractors. Jennifer was an obvious choice—she consistently delivers high-quality work and shows complete dedication to her projects and clients.
We recently sat down with Jennifer to learn more about her background, interests and career (she originally wanted to be Indiana Jones when she grew up!). Read on to learn more about Jennifer.
TL: Where did you grow up and where did you go to college? What did you study?
JC: I’m a Maryland native and grew up outside of Baltimore. I attended the University of Maryland at College Park and studied Classics.
TL: What did (or do!) you want to be when you grow up? How did you get into marketing and communications?
JC: My early career aspiration was to be Indiana Jones—unfortunately, it turns out that those movies somewhat misrepresented archaeology. I started my career in editorial and was given tons of opportunity to try new things, which eventually led to marketing, design, and CX roles.
TL: What do you like to do for fun?
JC: I’m a very amateur DIY-er, dabbling in small renovation projects around the house. I read a lot and love to travel.
TL: Favorite food? Drink?
JC: Tacos of all kinds. Coffee.
TL: One bucket list destination…
TL: What’s the best advice a manager has ever given you?
JC: Two pieces of advice (that are somewhat in conflict) stick with me: 1) You need to have time to think. And 2) sometimes you just need to make a decision.
TL: What advice would you give to young professionals?
JC: I have two pieces of advice. 1) If you’re assigned a task that you have no idea how to do, don’t panic. Google is your friend, and it’s always a good idea to try to figure out a way to solve a problem yourself, even if you still have questions. And 2) Understand your rights as a worker—having even a cursory understanding of labor law can help you navigate tricky situations during the hiring process and at work with more confidence.
TL: Do you have a mentor? How has he or she been helpful to you in your career?
JC: I’ve been lucky to have had great managers for my entire career. They have all been supportive while giving me room to grow and learn new skills.
TL: What work accomplishment are you most proud of?
JC: Days where a product or a new campaign launches are always my most satisfying workdays—it’s gratifying to see weeks (or months!) of hard work come together. I recently launched a financial planning tool—it was very satisfying.
TL: What do you like about being a TorchLight contractor?
JC: I love that TorchLight specializes in marketing and communications, so they do the hard work of screening for relevant positions. I’ve also appreciated their high-touch approach—the whole team has been super supportive from my initial interview throughout the year plus I’ve worked with a great client.