What The UM Team Did On Its Summer Vacation, Er, Lockdown

Ts&Zzz is a podcast to help you fall asleep by reading the most boring text on the internet; terms of service agreements, terms and conditions and privacy policies.

Launched by Scott Elchison, Manager, Partnerships, IPG Media Lab, on April 1st, the podcast's case is that "We have all agreed to countless numbers of these contracts in our lives but have never actually read them and probably never will.  Instead, we are putting them to use to help people get better sleep and maybe even learn something along the way.  Take a listen tonight and let me know your thoughts on the product. Hopefully it works for you the same way it does for me. Here’s to better sleep!

“I have been interested in exploring creative formats for podcasts that were outside the traditional interview, true crime/docu-style-type shows that currently dominate podcasting," Elchison says, adding, "I gravitated towards the idea of a sleep podcast because I thought it would be relatively easy to produce. The sleep podcast space wasn't overly crowded and it was something positive I could make (that is, a podcast to help people get better sleep).”



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"Broken Not Beaten" is a book of poetry by UM Senior Associate-Corporate Communications Kosta Rosvoglou, that focuses primarily on love and loss.

Written by Rosvoglou in July, the 40 poems are broken into five sections highlighting the stages of grief: denial, anger, despair, guilt, acceptance.

"I poured a ton of emotion into the book, hoping that in return I can make a connection with each and every reader who comes across it. It’s personal, it’s tear-worthy and it’s relatable for anyone who’s ever loved or been loved. In a year like 2020, I hope it serves as a simple reminder of what’s most important in life: love, both for ourselves and for one another," he says, adding, "Nearly anyone, regardless of age or gender, can make a connection to the words written page after page. If I can promise anything, it’s that there’s a poem in here for everyone."


Katelyn Tzavelis, Manager of Analytics at UM Worldwide, rediscovered her childhood hobby of knitting and launched a SM-driven business.

"I learned to knit in 7th grade and have always loved working on different projects in my free time," she says, adding, "However, as I got older and busier, those projects took less of a priority in my life. When we had to quarantine for Covid-19 I was so excited to find more time to pick back up my knitting skills and create different things for new babies in my family. I started making way too many, so I decided to launch a small social media-driven business on FB/IG called Things with Strings Co. On both these platforms I showcase my projects and take custom orders via direct messaging or email (thingswithstringsco@gmail.com) for those who are interested."

Follow on Instagram at @thingswithstringsco or on Facebook by liking the page, Things with Strings Co.”


"100% BS," is a podcast hosted by UM Associate-Portfolio Management Bella Solanot, which examines a variety of topics surrounding society, culture, and current events.

“I started this podcast because I was hungry for a platform to speak freely and openly about any and all topics relating to culture and society," she says, explaining, "My goal is to get people to challenge their perspectives and adopt a healthy amount of questioning mainstream ideas into their lives — and have a laugh along the way.”

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Nicholas Yamamoto is a UM senior associate-portfolio management by day, but night, he's two kinds of artists: martial and illustration. He combined the two for a series of vector art illustrations featuring various Japanese martial arts.


"All The Boys" is a podcast created by UM Senior Vice President-Group Director of Content Management Anthony Hello discussing decades of law enforcement abuse of the LGBTQ+ community. Launched on National Coming Out Day 2020, the podcast uncovers the stories of of "would-be queer luminaries whose arrests effectively outed them publicly and defined their legacies -- until now."

“Inclusion is a priority at UM," says Hello, explaining the inspiration for his project "came from a panel discussion about race in America that UM hosted with Nikole Hannah-Jones -- the Pulitzer Prize-winning creator of the 1619 Project -- during our annual day of community action called UM Impact Day.

"Co-moderating that panel, I had an ‘a-ha’ moment that “History” itself is not inclusive: the narratives we’re taught miss or misrepresent the histories unique to minority & marginalized groups. Ms. Hannah-Jones created the 1619 Project to help right that wrong for the Black community; I thought, could I create something that does that for the LGBTQ+ community?

"I developed the insight that LGBTQ+ people largely lack historic role models since society forced our ancestors into the closet; we do, though, know of a few would-be luminaries because of their arrests on gay-related ‘morals charges’. In Season One, I highlight Walter Jenkins, who was a top aide to President Lyndon B. Johnson for 25 years but who was forced to resign after such an arrest. Growing up, it would have been an incredible source of Pride and empowerment for me to know that the right-hand person to the President of the United States was a gay man, but I never heard about Walter since he faded into obscurity after the public shaming. I hope ALL THE BOYS: THE PODCAST helps LGBTQ+ people see that we’ve always been here, and we’ve always been instrumental in moving society forward despite efforts to hold us back.”


UM Manager of Portfolio Management Brad Cutler acknowledges he "had a lot of free time" during the pandemic, so naturally, he applied some of it to honing his Etch A Sketch skills.

“At the beginning of quarantine, I felt pressure to not waste this unprecedented amount of free time," he recalls, adding, "So whether it was drawing, writing, reading, or puzzling, I tried to devote some time every day to mentally stimulating activities and completing projects. However, it was also important to not entirely associate self-worth with productivity—I still let myself binge watch Tiger King.”

UM Senior Associate-Portfolio Management Kristen McCarty used her idle time to embroider and also took up a new hobby: henna tattoos.

“I’m working my way up to making a full quilt and making little pieces during quarantine has been great practice. I love having funny little sayings around my house to keep spirits up," she says, adding, “I’ve been doing henna tattoos for 20 years and it was great to have time to pick it back up. It takes a lot of time but is very relaxing."

1 comment about "What The UM Team Did On Its Summer Vacation, Er, Lockdown".
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  1. John Grono from GAP Research, September 23, 2020 at 5:38 p.m.

    Brilliant.   I'm still chuckling away.

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