Musings in Time

If there is one thing that describes my trip to New York as a whole, it is that New York never ceases to amaze. By the time we entered the Time & Life Building, we were in the process of completing our second full day in the City. We had already met a variety of inspiring people and had traveled to a variety of places and buildings. However, when passing into the Time & Life Building, I still had butterflies in my stomach as I looked around in awe.

When entering the glossy elevator to travel to the 28th floor, I was still surprised that there could be such high numbers that one could choose to press. The 28th floor belonged to People magazine, one of my favorite guilty pleasure reads for as long as I can remember. As I passed a foosball table placed next to a window looking out at a beautiful, postcard-worthy view of the New York skyline, I had a feeling that this was a place where important things happened.

The class sitting at the conference table listening to Lee Cordobes

The class sitting at the conference table listening to Lee Cordobes.

We entered a room and all sat at a large conference table with three People magazines laid individually in front of us, much to my delight. After getting situated in our seats, Lee Cordobes, Associate Publisher for Cooking Light, began to have her conversation with us. As a graduate of Washington and Lee’s 2001 class, she understands the shoes that we are currently walking in. She articulated that she had no idea what she wanted to do after graduating as a double major in Art History and Economics. With this comment, I relaxed. She seemed to comprehend my current struggles with finding my niche in life after college. However, this smart lady with a kind, genuine face and smile, talking in front of me, did find her direction and became successful. Perhaps all hope is not lost for me quite yet!

Cordobes’ discourse focused on her experience with marketing and ad sales. If there was one word that describes the main emphasis of her talk, it would be brands. She explained that the industry is thinking more like brands now. Prior to recent years, the industry concentrated on the tangible, printed property of the magazine. Now, however, the focus has changed to selling the brand and engaging the consumer in a variety of media. The main question asked today is: how can we sell the content and the brand in a way that is interesting and interactive with the audience?

The display of Time Inc. magazines in the Time and Life Building's main floor.

The display of Time Inc. magazines on the main floor of the Time & Life Building.

After Cordobes answered all our questions, Amy Kelleher, manager of Human Resources at Time Inc., spoke with us. She discussed with us two opportunities to work with magazines at Time Inc. during and right after college: Time Inc. Summer Internship Programs and the Time Inc. Lifestyle Group Fellowship Program. Our time with Kelleher was particularly unique because she described chances to gain magazine experience that we can take advantage of now. While other talks enlightened us about the future, Kelleher focused on the present.

The visit to Time Inc., I think, gave direction to all of us. We learned about ways to gain skill at the present time and to prepare for the skills we will need in the future. Holding on to this advice in the hopes of keeping big numbers next to the elevator buttons!

— Laura Lemon

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