Path to Prosek: From PA to AAE – Alex Theroux
Unboxed Thoughts is pleased to bring back our popular “Path to Prosek: from PA to AAE” series to highlight our newest junior colleagues’ experiences at the firm going from apprentices to full-time employees.
For those who aren’t familiar with it, Prosek Partners’ Post Graduate Apprentice (PA) program is designed for recent college graduates who are interested in starting a career in public relations. The four-month program offers post graduate students the opportunity to launch their careers in financial communications and strive to become an Assistant Account Executive (AAE) with our firm.
First up for the “PA to AAE” series relaunch: we sat down for a Q&A with Alex Theroux, who is now based in our New York office, and first joined Prosek as an intern.
Tell us a little bit about your general experience at Prosek so far. What’s it been like, and what have you been up to?
The ten months I have spent with Prosek, first as an intern, then a PA, and now as an AAE, have both flown by and have felt like a lifetime. Given the nature of our work, time tends to pass by very quickly, yet the welcoming nature of Prosek and its people has made me feel as if I’ve been a part of this team forever. Regardless of time and how long I’ve been here, I have seen myself grow tremendously as a PR professional and member of my account teams.
What was the PA program like for you?
The PA program overall was a very effective way to transition into a full-time role at Prosek. Agency life is known to be busy and fast-paced, but the PA program allows for new hires to gradually transition onto accounts and learn the basics before they dive into the more involved parts of the role. Throughout this transition, senior colleagues are incredibly supportive and always there to help or answer any questions, as many of them have also been through the program. By the time it was over, I felt incredibly prepared to become a AAE due to the foundational skills that had been instilled in me over the last four months.
Why would you recommend others join/apply to the PA program?
Prosek prides itself on its “homegrown talent,” and after completing the PA program myself, I can certainly see why. From the very first day, PAs are taught the foundational skills needed to set themselves up for success at the firm, so that they may continue to rise to more senior roles over time. One of the things I have found most promising has been being able to work with colleagues at the VP+ level who started at the firm years ago as a PA or an intern, just like myself. Seeing that homegrown talent in action at the most senior levels has me excited for my future at Prosek.
What are the top things you’ve learned at Prosek so far, and how have those lessons helped you succeed here?
Most importantly—get comfortable with the uncomfortable. I do not mean “uncomfortable” in a negative sense, but in such a way that challenges you to go a bit outside of your comfort zone in order to pursue opportunities that generally reap great rewards. Some of my greatest accomplishments at Prosek so far have stemmed from sharing a proactive idea with a client team or offering to take the first stab at a task I’ve never done before. As intimidating as it may have been to speak up in those moments, they always ended up being instances where I grew professionally and gained invaluable career experience.
If you had to choose, what’s been your favorite moment at Prosek since joining?
One thing you will hear time and time again at Prosek is how strong the firm’s culture is, and I can certainly attest to that. My favorite moments at Prosek so far have been ones where I’ve had opportunities to build connections with my colleagues, whether it be through a coffee chat with a teammate or attending a happy hour with my manager and her other managees. The inclusive environment at the firm has not only introduced me to colleagues I work well with, but also individuals who I now consider both colleagues and friends.