Alumni in 10

Josh Cassidy, '09

Josh Cassidy, '09

Title/Employer: Senior Creative/Writer at Deutsch

Degree Earned/Emphasis Area: Bachelors in Advertising and PR / Minor in Business


1. What has your journey been since graduation?
I graduated with a degree in Advertising and PR. From there, I started working at an advertising agency in Detroit where I became a writer in the Creative Department. Basically, my job was to come up with campaign ideas and write the words you’d see on an ad or hear on a commercial. Eventually, I was recruited to an agency in California and that’s where I’ve been the last five years.

2. How has Grand Valley had a role in your journey?
I owe everything to Grand Valley. It was there I met some very talented people and mentors who helped me break into the advertising industry, which isn’t easy. It’s definitely a “who you know” business, and fortunately I knew a particular Laker with similar career goals. He was a former classmate that graduated before me and landed an internship at the Detroit agency where I wanted to work. I reached out to him to learn more about the agency and he ended up inviting me in and introducing me to people. That’s how I got my first job.

3. What is your favorite Grand Valley memory?
Whew. Good question. I have lots, but I’d have to say my favorite memories are playing intramural sports and basketball with my friends at the Rec Center. That’s where I met some of my closest friends. I feel like I was at the rec at least every other day. Back when I had young knees. Now when I play, I need a vat of IcyHot just to walk the next day.

4. What three words describe your experience at Grand Valley?
Fresh Food Company. (My second favorite Grand Valley memory.)

5. How, and why, have you stayed involved with Grand Valley since graduation?
Since graduation, I’ve made it a point to reach back and help Grand Valley students trying to pursue a career in advertising. Whether it’s making introductions, giving advice, or even coming in and speaking to classes, I try to do what I can. I had people help me, so it only feels right to pay it forward with other Lakers.

6. Why are you proud to be a Laker for a Lifetime?
I feel like Grand Valley is still a bit of a sleeper school and I love that. It’s a gem hidden in West Michigan and while there have been a ton of Grand Valley alumni success stories, Grand Valley still has so much potential to be an even bigger part of the national conversation. I’ve watched its reputation and recognition grow like crazy since I graduated and I take pride in telling people I went to Grand Valley. Because if they aren’t already familiar, I know it’s only a matter of time.

7. What do you like to do for fun?
So many things. Some of my favorites are going to concerts, art exhibits, new restaurants, binge-watching shows, and just about anything to do with comedy or sports. I don’t know if I’d always call it fun, but I’m also a die-hard Detroit Lions fan. Sundays in the Fall are pretty emotional for me.

8. What is your favorite quote/motto to live by?
“You miss 100% of the shots you don’t take. – Wayne Gretzky” - Michael Scott

9. What motivates you?
This is going to sound lame, but my parents motivate me more than anything. They did everything they could to set me up for success, so I just try to do right by them every single day. Oh, and competition. Especially when the odds aren’t in my favor. There’s nothing like pulling an upset. Just ask any other Lions fan.  

10. What book or movie have you recently enjoyed?
I would be remiss not to shamelessly plug the book I wrote called, If Animals Could Talk. I like to think of it as a book for your inner child and your adult mind. It recently went viral (it feels weird even saying that) after a Grandmother accidentally bought the book for her 6-year-old Granddaughter without ever actually reading it. US Weekly called it “…the most inappropriate book ever.” My parents have never been more proud.

October 2017

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Page last modified October 24, 2017