When Lene Adolfsen started looking for her first co-op job, she knew that she wanted to work internationally and focus on writing. But exactly where and how this plan would come to fruition remained a mystery. At one point, she considered pursuing a position in publishing, but ultimately surprised herself when she accepted a co-op position at a Bristol, United Kingdom-based marketing and search-engine-optimization company, Strategy Internet Marketing.
“It was unexpected,” said Adolfsen, a third-year English major with a minor in linguistics. “I thought it would be interesting, I never thought of going in this direction with an English degree.”
The Norway native had no problem adjusting to life back in Europe, and noted that her experiences in the U.S. have given her a leg up in her new role. As the only American student in her office, she was the go-to employee for tapping into that particular perspective. “A lot of our posts go onto American blogs,” said Adolfsen, “so they’ll ask me if something looks and reads ‘Americanized.’”
Adolfsen spent most of her time at Strategy writing blog posts that help elevate client websites on the Google search totem pole. After being assigned a keyword— “garden benches,” say, or “French lingerie”—she would then construct an interesting post for online publication. On some occasions, she’ll get the opportunity to write editorial posts that give her the freedom to express her creative side even further.
Adolfsen is the first student from Northeastern to hold a co-op position at Strategy Internet Marketing, and has paved the way for future English majors looking for a unique opportunity in their field. Writing blog posts and editorials from a foreign country, she explained, is a modern way of applying a classic humanities degree, and is sophisticated yet relevant enough to appeal to a new wave of emerging writers.
“It’s an interesting job and I love how challenging it’s been,” Adolfsen said. “I’m learning to write in a way that is so completely different from academic writing.”
But this alternative approach to writing isn’t the only skill she has picked up during her experience in England. She’s also gained a greater understanding of search-engine optimization, saying, “To have this experience under my belt and an understanding of how SEO and Google Analytics work is really helpful because everything is going online now.”