Day in the Life Dinner: Seventeen, Shapeways, & The Kinney Group

The first installment of our Day in the Life Dinner series was a huge success! Three businesswomen empowered the FindSpark community with their awesome career insights and life lessons. Here’s a glimpse of the messages our inspiring alumni speakers shared with us ambitious creatives.Day in the Life Dinner #1

Eleanor Whitney, Community Outreach Coordinator, Shapeways

Eleanor’s career started in museums, having worked four years at the Brooklyn Museum and one at the Rubin Museum running educational programming. Then she realized she wanted to work “1:1 with living artists.” In her current role, she engages, supports, and empowers a global creative community at the world’s leading consumer 3D printing marketplace.

However, before Eleanor got to her current role, she did quite a bit of soul-searching – or “reflection and re-evaluation,” as she calls it and defines below:

  • Define the type of job you want. Ask yourself:
    • What are the criteria I want?
    • How important are these criteria to me? (i.e. gorgeous office vs. good culture fit)
    • What is the environment I will thrive in?
    • What kind of tasks do I enjoy doing?
  • Identify sectors and roles where those types of jobs exist
  • Find the companies you like and meet people who work there
  • Learn new skills
  • Internships (yes, even post 30-years-old!)
Christina Rene, VP & Partner at The Kinney Group

Christina went from being on the path to become a lawyer to becoming a full-time event planner! She studied pre-law in undergrad, but upon graduation decided that ultimately the lawyer life was not for her. She shared a number of lessons she has learned along the way with us:

On Finding a Mentor:
  • In regards to following up, do it, don’t press it! So, follow up, but don’t overdo it.
  • Reach out when it’s genuine.
  • Try not to take a rejection or no response personally; people get busy!
Keys to Staying Sane Amidst Chaos (a.k.a. Event Planner Life)
  • Balance: eating right, exercising, and staying spiritually fit.
  • Do something that you are passionate enough about it to put up with the good, the bad, and the ugly.
  • Be your own brand.
  • Don’t be afraid to taste a little bit of everything.Dip in all the sauces.
  • Live in a glass bowl: you see what others are warning you about, but you forge ahead anyway.
  • Remember that you’re the only person that had the guts to do it, so you are going to get to your dreams faster!
  • Get a board of advisors, AKA a group of your peers, who you go to for motivation and whose passion and drive you can feed off of.
Morgan Thompson, Associate Merchandising Director at Seventeen

Morgan has had a diverse career so far. She studied journalism and entertainment at UNC – Chapel Hill. She has worked at advertising agencies and a number of diverse magazines, including Seventeen Magazine, Parenting Magazine, and Redbook Magazine. In addition to her current role at Seventeen, she also co-hosts the television show Profiles, a celebrity interview program in New York. She advised the following:

  • “What do you love about your job?” Figure out what it is and that is where you should be focusing your time and energy.
  • “Be open to opportunities.” You never know when, from who, or from where your big break will come!

Which speaker alumni would you like to see at our next Day in the Life Dinner? Nominate them in the comments below.

Special thanks to our partner: Bareburger 

bearforwebjpgBareburger is a micro-chain of organic burger restaurants that offer mouth-watering organic burgers and sandwiches, fresh salads, delicious shakes and sharable snacks in environmentally sustainable, eco-friendly locations. They believe organic food tastes better and is better for you, and that sourcing ingredients locally benefits our communities. The Bareburger menu features a variety of meats, including traditional beef, chicken, turkey and lamb; exotic options such as elk, bison, ostrich and boar; and mushroom, veggie and black bean burgers for our vegetarian and vegan guests. Bareburger also offers a number of savory and sweet salads, organic beer and wine, and kid-friendly cubby meals for the littlest diners. To learn more, please visit

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