• UO on Campus: Mike Hogan

    Every day is different for our UO Events Assistant Mike Hogan, whose range of passions and love of juggling new projects are on display in his Philadelphia apartment. We visited Mike at home to talk more about how he organizes his small space to feel clean and minimal.
    Photos by Anna Ottum

    How long have you been working for UO? 
    I've been working for UO since 2012. I was a senior in college and was living in my first off-campus apartment and needed extra money, so I took a part time sales associate job at UO in Buffalo, NY. It was during that time when I was graduating and having absolutely no idea what I was going to be doing with my marketing degree that I really started paying attention to the company's business model and their passion for their employees. 
    At the end of 2015,  I had just moved to Los Angeles to work as a men's manager at the Melrose Ave. store when my friend who was working at Home Office told me about the position. She knew about my past work in events during college and thought it would be a great fit. I made the decision to apply and the rest is history.

    What's one of your favorite things about your job?
    I think the things that attracted me to UO from the beginning was the collaborative nature of the company. There are SO many different moving parts that make the metaphorical wheel keep spinning, and it's amazing to see ideas grow into large-scale campaigns or events. For special events that I work on, we work with so many different teams and departments to create impactful and unforgettable experiences for our customers. It's rewarding to work for a company that uses all of their resources to collaborate.

    What's a typical day in the life like for you? 
    I assist my boss on all things special events, from creating documents on upcoming initiatives to researching communities where we are opening new stores. I'm a bit scatterbrained, so the constant change and plethora of new projects we're working on is pretty comforting to my racing brain. 

    Away from the office, what's your space like? 
    I've lived in my apartment since March and I absolutely love it. It's an extremely small studio space that's essentially a bedroom with a kitchen in it. Once I signed the lease and had a friend see it in person, I knew the vibe had to be very bright and airy since it was such a small space that I wasn't necessarily used to in past apartments.

    What was one of the main things you were looking for when hunting for your apartment? 
    I don't know if my friends and family would describe me as such, but I have always felt like quite the nomad when it comes to my living situation. Right out of college I had that existential crisis of "Who am I?! What do I want to be doing?!" so I kind of consciously made the decision to live in very temporary housing as a way to not solidify my life. Luckily when I was offered the position in Philadelphia, I was absolutely certain that this was where I wanted to be, so for the first time in a while I knew I had to find somewhere that I would be comfortable living for several years. I also had just moved across the country and was moving back in less than a year's time, so I wanted something very small and minimal that I could kind of start over with. I also should give a shoutout to my friends Lynn and Ian for taking the time out of their crazy schedules to go and look at apartments in Philly while I was still in LA and finding me this place. Thanks, guys!

    Can you share a bit about your neighborhood + location — what you like about it and how it informs your view of the city. 
    I live right on the border or Fishtown and East Kensington, which are both north of the center of the city. I really love this neighborhood because it's still very green in terms of development. It's exciting and interesting to see the way the community is changing and growing. My favorite thing about this area would have to be the close proximity to the great coffee shops and boutiques on Frankford Ave. There's some super talented people who have set up shop in this neighborhood and really progressed the area into a great community. Oh, and I'm also quite the homebody so I like that this neighborhood is very family-oriented and quiet. I lived in West Hollywood prior to this and am relieved to get away from the constant noise.

    How do you describe your aesthetic when it comes to styling out your space?
    Clean and minimal! I've never been one for clutter, so it was important to me to create a very clean space that wouldn't be prone to clutter. I also drew lots of inspiration from the West Coast in terms of color and textures.

    What are some of your favorite possessions? 
    My plants! My best friend is a literal plant guru, so I enlisted her to help me figure out what types of plants I could get and keep alive with my not so green thumb. Now I have a ton of greenery and I've kind of found that I can't stop purchasing them!

    What’s your favorite part about your space? 
    My building has a really great yard that I've been spending more and more time in now that the weather is getting nice. There's a ton of greenery and it's nice to have a yard space to hang out in when my small space is feeling a bit too small.

    What’s your least favorite part? 
    I am the self-proclaimed take out king, so my least favorite part of my space would have to be my kitchen. I've literally used my oven once since moving in and would just rather take the entire kitchen out and have more space for plants and chairs or a washer and dryer- anything other than a kitchen!

    What’s on rotation right now for you both: music, books, movies, and/or other at-home activities you’re into? 
    I've been reading a ton of short story collections lately. It all started with my reintroduction to a Joyce Carol Oate's short called "Where Are You Going, Where Have You Been?" which I read on a train back from New York after a work event (if you haven't read it, take a few minutes—it's so perfectly written). So now, I'm kind of trying to find different short story collections and have those on rotation for the summer. As far as music, I'm definitely on a pop kick because of the season. I always become obsessed with 80's pop divas during the summer. There's something about Pat Benatar in the summertime that just makes her that much better.

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