Hi, everyone. My name is Reagan Stewart Hime. I grew up in Sacramento, CA, more specifically, a little rural town called Loomis, and found myself fortunate enough to be raised by two fantastic parents. My mother tended to work from home for much of my life and as a kid, I never quite understood what she did or why to me it seemed like she just never actually worked. This led me to be a particularly curious individual who loved asking questions. Over the years I began to understand that my mother (Gwyn Hime), was a partner at her firm BCF Public Affairs and had earned the right to choose to work from home to spend more time with my brother and I growing up. As we grew, my brother and I (being the outspoken individuals we have always been) would joke about joining our parent’s companies and then swiftly, “taking over.” This past summer I had been discussing my post-college plans with my brother (Rex W. Hime), who also attended Chapman University and currently holds a position as a Legislative Analyst within my Dad’s (Rex S. Hime), lobbying association, California Business Properties Association. I had quickly realized that our childhood dream had turned into a slightly more possible reality.
Coming into my Senior year at Chapman University, I had two thoughts on my mind. One was, “well that was fast.” And the second was, “wow. I should probably start thinking about what I want to do after college.” Heavily involved in my Fraternity’s operations throughout my Chapman career taught me a lot of precious information that I quickly applied to my academics as a Strategic and Corporate Communication major. As I get closer to graduating I realize that, believe it or not, not every company is overly ecstatic to hire the graduating Fraternity President with nothing on his resume except years of Pi Kappa Alpha executive board experience. Fortunately, prior to college and during summers, I was able to gain other experience through paid internships prior to this one. I have always been a ‘put all your eggs in one basket’ kind of guy which is why I believe – during college itself – I found so much passion in serving my Fraternity. And while my Fraternity helped develop my professional leadership skills as well as my networking platform I knew at some point in my life I would need to give my knowledge and efforts a value and start making some money. My main problem was that a lot of the connections I had built through my undergraduate experience at Chapman were all located in Southern California, and ironically, the one thing I did know while I enrolled in Chapman University, was that I planned to move back home and work in Sacramento. So, with this well-timed epiphany, I headed into my Senior year and last semester as Chapman Pi Kappa Alpha’s President with a newfound desire to focus on my post-graduate life. I wanted to begin utilizing the strategic skills I had gained to help widen my portfolio and better suit me for the real world that was fast approaching. Now, this is where my internship begins.
This past semester I had the privilege of interning with the consulting firm, BCF Public Affairs and getting a little taste of the real-world consulting industry from behind the scenes. With the office located in Sacramento, I was required to work remotely from Orange. My duties included searching and compiling daily online news coverage for clients, conducting periodic issue research, and assisting in coalition building. To be completely honest, I had a blast doing all of it. I oddly find great serenity in conducting research, and the more I learned about BCF’s clientele and its issues, the more I found myself wanting to understand more. Consulting work – particularly at the intern level – requires a lot more focus on behind the scenes details than understood. Before this professional opportunity, I had always been a curious kid listening to my parents talk about the issues impacting their clients and giving my unwanted opinions and “brilliant ideas” on how to solve challenges. It was this environment growing up which is what ultimately pushed me to inquiring about the opportunity to intern at her company this year. After a few interviews and check-ups with my schedule, operation take over mom’s business was a go. While I know, I have got quite a few years to go on that front, getting my feet wet and beginning to build relationships with these individuals was a great start.
With the semester quickly coming to a close, I could not have been happier with my decision to pursue this opportunity. While initially nervous I overloaded myself with responsibilities at the beginning of this school year; I have come to learn that I manage my time much more efficiently when kept busy. I gained a great deal of respect for the amount of critical thinking that goes on within the individuals apart of this business. I am incredibly fortunate to have had the opportunity of being a fly on the wall during my upbringing and in a lot of these conversations with the BCF team, allowing me to soak up as much intel as I could.
My time with BCF this semester has left me even more curious to master these so-called public affairs, and I have nothing else remaining on my agenda to get in my way of doing so. I am looking forward to seeing where these new relationships take me and I am forever thankful for Chapman University’s School of Communication for encouraging and highlighting the positive efforts of countless undergraduate students. My advice to anyone reading this, go and get out of your comfort zone. Whether that be through an independent internship, taking a leadership role in your campus organization, or being more vocal in the classroom, I promise you won’t regret it.