September 26, 2016 | Jacquelyn Hubbard

Earning a writing degree before the existence of the internet might have meant that your writing would go into a book or newspaper. Now, a writing major can land your words just about anywhere around the world, in any form.

For Will Montei ‘13, a writing degree has empowered him in his work as the brand manager for Omni ePartners in Seattle, Washington. Since September 2015, Montei has worked his way up to managing 12 brands in e-commerce, assisting them with everything from marketing to operations to distribution of products.

E-commerce savvy

The goal of Omni ePartners is to help companies look as attractive as possible to customers with a flawless catalogue of images, copy, headlines and reviews on e-commerce sites. Montei finds the perfect combination of words for these aspects with his favorite part of the job: catalogue scrubbing.

With catalogue scrubbing, Montei polishes the brand’s presence on Amazon by making sure the products have good titles, descriptions and images, which improves search results. “Sometimes when I’m in the zone with my coffee at my computer, I really enjoy catalogue scrubbing because it’s like piecing together a puzzle and getting words right, thinking about how attractive the product is to the customer,” he said.

There are other perks to the job, too. “I love my coworkers. Being able to look forward to the faces in the office is huge for me every morning,” Montei said. “I enjoy the big wins [for companies], like setting a price promotion for a brand and that they make a lot of money from.”

Word choice and presentation

Montei’s interest in writing began in a creative writing class in high school, where he was given freedom to write whatever came to mind. He carried that creative freedom to Calvin.

“I definitely learned a lot of important skills from my writing degree that I have taken into my job in marketing,” Montei said. “Writing is all about word choice and presentation, and I do that every single day in emails or putting copy up on an Amazon detail page. I’m still in the writing world, but in a different way.”

Montei was the arts and entertainment editor for Calvin's student newspaper Chimes, writing reviews for concerts and theater performances. He “still hasn’t shaken off that college optimism”, as he is currently working on a novel.

Assessing the world

Along with writing opportunities at Calvin, Montei is thankful for the ways that Calvin impacted his faith. “Calvin really deconstructed my faith in a lot of good ways,” he said. “Calvin did a great job at teaching me how to think and assess the world, and have discernment qualities. As a philosophy minor, I was constantly engaged in a lot of different ideas with those classes and my literature classes. I loved everything about my experience at Calvin—if I could do it all over, I’d go back in a heartbeat.”

Montei has hopes of eventually becoming a high school teacher, pastor, and/or novelist someday. At Calvin, he learned to take life one opportunity at a time and invest in community along the way. “You need a community to keep you rooted and always point you to the goodness in life,” he said. “A lot of life is having plans changed on you that are out of your control, and then figuring out what you can do with that.”

Recent stories