[ “G.O.A.L.S.” is a place where students write about how their planned, current, and future activities may fit into the Honors & Scholars G.O.A.L.S.: Global Awareness, Original Inquiry, Academic Enrichment, Leadership Development, and Service Engagement. For more information, go to: http://honors-scholars.osu.edu/e-portfolio. Delete these instructions and add your own post.

Global Awareness: Students cultivate and develop their appreciation for diversity and each individual’s unique differences. For example, consider course work, study abroad, involvement in cultural organizations or activities, etc .
Original Inquiry: Honors & Scholars students understand the research process by engaging in experiences ranging from in-class scholarly endeavors to creative inquiry projects to independent experiences with top researchers across campus and in the global community. For example, consider research, creative productions or performances, advanced course work, etc.
Academic Enrichment: Honors & Scholars students pursue academic excellence through rigorous curricular experiences beyond the university norm both in and out of the classroom.
Leadership Development: Honors & Scholars students develop leadership skills that can be demonstrated in the classroom, in the community, in their co-curricular activities, and in their future roles in society.
Service Engagement: Honors & Scholars students commit to service to the community.]


I began to work at J.Crew shortly after I made big changes to my academic plan and started looking for a new direction, early in my Sophomore year. I did not want to work in the accounting business that I had been for the prior 10 months, and wanted to begin working directly with people, not numbers. Granted, I think I also treated this job as something easy and time-consuming, and of course, a fun way to make money. I did not anticipate learning a lot from the retail environment, and I am pleasantly surprised at how wrong I was.

Working at J.Crew helped me understand the real gravity of customer service, and how essential it is in today’s work environment, given the increase in technology and social media, and I learned the worth of carrying yourself with grace and confidence to appeal to the everyday consumer. Retail is a competitive environment, and it relies on quick-thinking, adaptation skills, and your ability to relate to customers. This job was especially challenging for me because I did struggle to relate to a lot of the consumer base; I was often placed in the Male section of the store, selling Men’s clothing to a majority of older Male customers. Regardless of this, even if I was placed in the Women’s section of the store, I was still asked to relate to an entirely different consumer base than myself – after all, J.Crew’s demographic majorly consists of mature professionals or elderly adults, as its style is very formal and brusque. The 19-year-old student was not exactly our goal consumer. Furthermore, retail is outright a disrespected position by many people. Consumers can be rude, expectant, harsh, and inconsiderate. And although I do not have many horror stories to tell of rude outbursts or aggressive shoppers, I viewed it constantly and heard about it even more within the retail realm. Thus, working retail also encourages patience, and a thicker skin.

The longer I worked at J.Crew, the more I noticeably began to improve, and I began to feel excited heading to work knowing the bounds I could make in my progress. I became more personable with strangers, and I notice even now, months after working at the store, that I am friendlier and more personable outside of the work environment as well as within. I felt myself take on a more mature demeanor inside the store and with customers, and the independent nature of the associate position made me more confident in my decision-making skills, and more reliant on my quick-thinking during busy hours.

I stopped working at J.Crew after I became President of my sorority and began working at Prime Social Group, because I had to align different priorities. The most important thing that my job at J.Crew taught me however, was that many seemingly arbitrary positions and activities are much more complicated than they appear. The experience made me more empathetic toward other retail workers that I encounter every day, and I find myself striking up conversation and inciting their opinion much more often, as I reminisce over my experiences at J.Crew.


[Artifacts are the items you consider to be representative of your academic interests and achievements. For each entry, include both an artifact and a detailed annotation.  An annotation is a reflective description of the artifact that attempts to communicate its significance.  For more information, go to: http://honors-scholars.osu.edu/e-portfolio. Delete these instructions and add your own post.]


My name is Madlin Deignan and I am entering my third year as a Marketing student through the Fisher School of Business at The Ohio State University. I entered the University as an Honors Engineering major… Oh how times have changed! Through multiple soul searches, major changes, arguments with my parents and ultimately myself, I settled on a Marketing degree with a double minor in Spanish and Music, Media, & Enterprise. I am currently working toward achieving these accolades.

My decision to progress toward this degree sprouted from a simple conversation with the then-President of my Sorority, Delta Gamma, a source of change in my life that I never anticipated. While my major at the time was Finance, she asked me about my plans for the future; what were my hopes following school, and how was I going to reach my goals? I mentioned that I was doing a project for one of my core classes on “A Company I Would Like To Work For,” and that I had chosen Sony Entertainment Network, an imaginative choice respondent to my love and passion for music and artwork that feed into the media around us. She followed up with the questions, “So how are you going to get into the industry?” to which I promptly revoked my initial commentary, stating that I would never actually make it in that industry, that it was just a fun alternative for the assignment, that it was not something I could excel in.

As I began to openly doubt my own passion and ability out loud to my friend, I realized how severely I was letting myself down, and how I was indeed diminishing my ability to work in this industry, not because I was not capable of doing so, but because I was not allowing myself nor believing in my capabilities.

The next day, I changed my major to Marketing, and I added on a minor in Music, Media, & Enterprise. If I was going to do this, than I would need to put all my attention and effort into it, and I wanted to act fast. After that night last year, I have not looked back in my final major change; I have since developed a website to encompass my goals in the music and entertainment industry, become more well-versed in the history of music development through classwork under my minor, and secured two internships within the industry, one of which I am currently working in, as an Intern for Hubbard Broadcasting in downtown Chicago.

Outside of my schoolwork and internships, I look toward modern and past literature to further my passions and knowledge about the world around me, with my favorite authors including Ayn Rand, Kurt Vonnegut, Gillian Flynn, and Jackson Katz. I am currently President of my sorority, Delta Gamma, and since my appointment have worked hard to incorporate new aspects into the infrastructure of the group, such as an Environment Sustainability Chair (or Co-Chairs in my chapter), and a Safety and Awareness Chair, which is currently one of my biggest projects within the group. Both of these positions were not just my doing, but inspired by the women who now reside in them. These members work with me to provide new incentives and projects for growth and community impact throughout my sorority, and I am proud to have helped cultivate their initiative into a real role within the chapter and Greek community at Ohio State. Despite the large commitment that my role as President requires of me, I also am involved with my local Hillel at Ohio State and the Buckeye Undergraduate Consulting Club. These groups help me express my interests outside of my sorority, and allow me to network more so throughout campus.

In the future, as aforementioned, I hope to work within the entertainment industry especially in the realm of artist development and discovery, with a focus on artists of underrepresented sectors of the population, such as artists of Latinx descent; my fluency in Spanish, and my plan to study abroad in Madrid the Spring of 2019 are characteristics of this interest that I believe will help me achieve my goals.

This summer I am located in Chicago, Illinois, where I will be working at Hubbard Radio and Anthropologie. Beginning this August, I will be back in Columbus for my third year of school, until I leave for Madrid second semester.

Year in Review

[ “Year in Review”  is where you should reflect on the past year and show how you have evolved as a person and as a student.  You may want to focus on your growth in a particular area (as a leader, scholar, researcher, etc.) or you may want to talk about your overall experience over the past year.  For more information, go to: http://honors-scholars.osu.edu/e-portfolio. Delete these instructions and add your own post.]