You never know where a degree from Weatherhead will take you, especially if your dreams are big enough.
For two graduates, it took them back to the west coast to begin their careers in production and animation.
Beth Magid, MGT ‘17, and Jahlyn Reyes-McKinley, MGT ‘19, both from California and both business management majors with concentrations in innovation and entrepreneurship, met at Case Western Reserve University through mutual friends and interests. While they came to the university with different career paths in mind—Magid started as pre-med and Reyes-McKinley as biomedical engineering—it’s Weatherhead that ended up putting them on the path towards their dream job.
After a short stint in marketing upon graduation, Magid landed a job in 2019 working on the newly released Disney+ show Monsters at Work. After a few promotions, her most recent title on the show was production coordinator, assets. That same year, Reyes-McKinley, knowing she wanted to work in production, reconnected with Magid, who was able to provide a recommendation to her team that eventually landed her a position on the show as a production associate.
Now roommates living in LA, the two credit Weatherhead, their extracurricular activities on campus and their electives in the College of Arts and Sciences as key drivers to helping them begin their careers in the production world.
“When I knew I wanted to start pursuing production, I scheduled a lot of informational interviews, which is a practice I learned at Weatherhead,” Magid said. “I ended up spending a lot of time asking professionals in the animation industry about what they do, and what they like about it, and I started telling them what I wanted to do. Eventually, through making those connections with people, I ended up finding my way into this job at Monsters at Work.”
Magid remembers a resume workshop she participated in during a class with John Paul Stephens, associate professor of organizational behavior, as critical to her success in building a resume that stood out when interviewing for the position.
Reyes-McKinley agreed that the faculty at Weatherhead stood out to her during her time at Weatherhead. A creativity in business course taught by Richard Buchanan, professor of design and innovation, helped her bridge the gap between design and management and eventually pushed her to pursuing a career in animation.
“Every teacher I had at Weatherhead always took the time to talk things through, to guide you, to shift you in a different direction,” Reyes-McKinley said. “I always felt really supported at Weatherhead.”
Outside of the classroom, Magid and Reyes-McKinley were able to apply these new leadership skills to the many extracurricular activities they were involved in. From leading media board to directing and producing shows, the pair took every advantage that Case Western Reserve offered to build their resumes while leveraging their creative sides.
“Case offers so many opportunities, both in class and outside of class, to explore what you really want to do,” Magid said.
Monsters at Work, an animated streaming television series, serves as a follow up to the 2001 film Monsters, Inc. The series debuted on the streaming service Disney+ on July 7 with two episodes, and each week released one new episode. There are ten episodes total.
Magid and Reyes-McKinley are grateful for the connections and experiences they had working on the production of Monsters at Work and say the look forward to continuing their careers in production and animation.
“If you work hard, find good people to support you, do your research, and ask questions, I believe the sky's the limit,” Magid said. I once thought my dream career path was silly and out of reach, but I found the right people, many from CWRU, who encouraged me to take the leap and chase it. Go get that dream!”