Grand Rapids

Welcome to Mary Free Bed Jackson Ozark!

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Jackson and his girlfriend Sanda

We have a new summer of 2016 intern at the Mary Free Bed marketing department. I like to ask my interns for a few words at the beginning of each semester as to what they would like to learn, experience and see. Jackson’s new intern blog follows below.

What do I want out of my Mary Free Bed marketing internship?
By Jackson Ozark, 2016 graduate Grand Valley State University

After four years of college and multiple internships I still can’t tell you what my dream job is. I have tried pushing myself to choose, whether that be a copywriter, journalist or even a food blogger. Nothing has ever stood out and hit the sweet spot. The only thing I know that I love to do is create powerful content through writing and design.

However I also have one major point that a company must hit in order for me to back it 110% and truly get the best possible work out of me. I need to love what the company stands for. When my graduation loomed I didn’t take the normal college senior route, attending job fair after job fair and taking any position I could that was even a stretch to fit in with my Advertising and Public Relations degree.

When Mary Free Bed came onto my radar it stood out for this reason. I knew that this wasn’t like other companies where I would be expected to work with words in order to get more customers because well, Mary Free Bed doesn’t really have traditional customers. Every patient here is treated like they should be, a person. These patients along with their nurses and doctors go on a special journey together to get people back in tip top shape, making their dreams into reality.

PR has always been in my mind as a career path since I took a mandatory college course on it and ended up loving the brainstorming of ideas and branching together of tactics to make a company shine. When I began my last internship in the summer of 2015 I realized how much more I learn in a real world experience rather than a classroom. I knew that even though I would be finishing school this year that the learning was never going to end. I know that this opportunity will open my mind to so many new channels I never knew existed prior.

While in this position I am certain that I will be able to enhance my writing skills along with becoming a better all-around person. I know that with this position I have found a company that will back my personal values and give me an opportunity to shine as a valued employee and not a glorified coffee delivery boy.

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Beautiful parking garage art from Kendall College art and design students

Another aspect of why I love my job as the community liason for Mary Free Bed. Many thanks to the Kendall College of Art and Design students for helping make this a reality in our new hospital.

The Story of my Wedding Ring

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I lost my wedding ring. I did. Only four months into marriage I was scraping off the windshield of my car one night and it disappeared. That night I was actually going to pick up my awesome wife Kelly (or Slick Laroo as some know her) from her job at David’s Bridal. A snow storm had started and Grand Rapids and I wanted to pick her up because it was BAD out – next morning we had eight inches of snow.

I knew the ring was gone right away, noticed it driving and then thought, “I wasn’t wearing gloves! Whuy?!” Scraping the window was rough and my fingers were completely numb, it just slipped off.When we finally got back home, we couldn’t find it. A co-worker even let me borrow a metal detector which I used for several days.

I was devastated. Bad. I felt sick that I lost my ring so soon after we got married…and we are still paying them off which didn’t help. 🙂 Kelly was a great wife and gave me an $8 replacement for Valentine’s Day which I proudly wore. We knew to just keep looking. I looked almost every day for a few minutes in the ice and snow of Eastown. Never saw it. Wooosaaa.

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I missed my ring, I had a few dreams that I found it. My new ring just wasn’t the same, but it was OK. THEN…Kelly told me she had a surprise for me. I had a busy day at work and when I got home she told me to shut my eyes. WHOAAAAA I couldn’t believe it, she found my ring.

I did a happy dance. I went WOOOOOO HOOOOOO! My mouth dropped. I got emotional. Kelly found the ring on the parking pad and it was just looking at her in the snow. I know that love is there no matter what – but I love Slick Laroo so much I want to shout it from the rooftops. I guess the symbolism of the ring and being a newlywed made it so special and that is why I took it so hard. Now – a lifetime to not loose the ring again because we may not be so lucky next time. 🙂

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I found the Awesome Mitten – time for some new web videos and blogs – #MittenLove

Awesome_MittenHello there. For those of you who do not know, I moved to Grand Rapids, Michigan and had to leave the DoItIndy crew. I couldn’t be gone tooo long, I was ready. Here I go as a new blogger for the very cool group – Awesome Mitten. A lot like DoItIndy, but Michigan style. I love their hashtag – #MittenLove.

If you live in Grand Rapids or the West Michigan area and have something cool, please let me know. You might get some #MittenLove. Looking forward to exploring more of Michigan soon.

My first blog – Big Ben joins the Mitten Crew

Grand Rapids Skyline - from Experience GR website.
Grand Rapids Skyline – from Experience GR website.

The Year 2013 in Pictures – Indy, SlickLaroo and the Michigan Mitten

What a year 2013 was….BIG changes on all fronts. Life, work and much more has changed in 12 months. So…for all you Indy peeps and beyond, my third year in pictures list.

2012 Year in Pictures Blog
  |  2011 Year in Pictures Blog

The year started off well with the amazing New Year's Eve Masquerade Ball at Union Station

The year started off well with the amazing New Year’s Eve Masquerade Ball at Union Station

Shooting a promo video for Red's Classic Barber Shop. I love that place - hot shaves, haircuts and man stuff.

Shooting a promo video for Red’s Classic Barber Shop. I love that place – hot shaves, haircuts and man stuff.

DoItIndy was a proud sponsor of the Norton Records benefit party with Cheetah Chrome and Deezen.

DoItIndy was a proud sponsor of the Norton Records benefit party with Cheetah Chrome and Deezen.

I proposed to my wife on live TV in early February 2013.

I proposed to my wife on live TV in early February 2013.

I love roller derby. DoItIndy was a proud sponsor of the Naptown Roller Girls for three years.

I love roller derby. DoItIndy was a proud sponsor of the Naptown Roller Girls for three years.

Slick Laroo and I dined at White Castle for Valentine's day 2013

Slick Laroo and I dined at White Castle for Valentine’s day 2013

The Burton's National Maple Syrup Festival is amazing.

The Burton’s National Maple Syrup Festival is amazing.

I love Mutt Strutt. This was my third year to walk in the fun on the most famous race track in the world. Posing at the Brickyard.

I love Mutt Strutt. This was my third year to walk in the fun on the most famous race track in the world. Posing at the Brickyard.

Yes. I do like beer, especially local craft beer. Here I am representing DoItIndy with my cousin Eric (Eat Urban). 30th Annual Brew Ha-Ha at the Phoenix Theatre.

Yes. I do like beer, especially local craft beer. Here I am representing DoItIndy with my cousin Eric (Eat Urban). 30th Annual Brew Ha-Ha at the Phoenix Theatre.

My final Saturday morning with Fox 59 and DoItIndy before moving to Grand Rapids. #BeUrban

My final Saturday morning with Fox 59 and DoItIndy before moving to Grand Rapids. #BeUrban

I got married to the wonderful Slick Laroo.

I got married to the wonderful Slick Laroo.

Slick and I went to the pumpkin patch in the Mitten.

Slick and I went to the Dunneback Farm pumpkin patch in the Mitten.

I started a very cool job at Mary Free Bed Rehabilitation Hospital. I work in new media and community relations.

I started a job at Mary Free Bed Rehabilitation Hospital. I work in new media and community relations.

I got to walk as a Mary Free Bed elf in the Grand Rapids Santa Parade.

I got to walk as a Mary Free Bed elf in the Grand Rapids Santa Parade.

Slick and I decided to become cat people. We adopted a kitty and named her Betty. Nala and Betty and best friends.

Slick and I decided to become cat people. We adopted a kitty and named her Betty. Nala and Betty are best friends.