2021-22 Marketing Newsletter

In This Issue

New Things Going On With The Major

Mary Beth Pinto

Welcome to the Spring 2022 newsletter for the Marketing major. As I gather my thoughts to share with you, I am overwhelmed with a mix of emotions—quite bittersweet. This newsletter is my last, as I am retiring at the end of June. As one thing ends, new things begin. We have lots to celebrate in the Marketing major. For example, a new faculty member, Mr. Kevin Pratt, joined us this year to cover Marketing Strategy. Kevin will be continuing in the department to teach the Personal Selling course. In addition, our major will welcome two new tenure-track faculty in the fall.

Other excitement—see the Alumni and Student Spotlights. It seems quite fitting to include these stories in my last newsletter, since the students have always been what I loved most about Behrend! My motto: We judge our success by the success of our graduates. I am happy to report that we have Marketing alumni who are working all over the United States and abroad.

Please know there is a transition plan in place for the Marketing major—so all is well.

My final words are those of Fred Rogers: "Often when you think you're at the end of something, you're at the beginning of something else."

Best wishes to all,

—Dr. Mary Beth Pinto, Professor of Marketing and Marketing Discipline Lead

Faculty Spotlight

Mr. Kevin Pratt, Lecturer in Marketing

Photo of Kevin Pratt

Mr. Kevin Pratt is a lecturer in marketing at Penn State Behrend, teaching marketing strategy and personal selling.

What do you most want Marketing students to know or learn?

It’s cliché, but communication is key, especially for marketing professionals. Use your time at Behrend to hone your written and verbal communication skills. Most of your classes will require some writing or presenting that will provide an opportunity to refine them!

What’s the most fun you’ve had in your career?

I work full time as the Sales and Marketing Director for Luminary Distilling. The role itself is fun but working for a small upstart with big ambitions offers excitement I haven’t experienced in other roles!

Alumni Spotlight

Alex Sienerth ’20

Photo of Alex Sienerth

Alex Sienerth graduated in 2020 with a degree in Marketing and a minor in Civic and Community Engagement. Alex works at the Erie Community Foundation as a marketing and communications officer. She helps manage two of their funds that include a membership base as well as assists with general marketing. She also is responsible for event planning—a part of her job that she particularly enjoys. Alex also works on freelance marketing and social media management for local businesses through her company, Modrn Digital Marketing.

What do you like most about your job now?

Working in the nonprofit industry can be challenging, busy, and exhausting, but it is also extremely rewarding and a lot of fun. I am involved in all sorts of different projects, and I get to create my own projects.

What do you think was the most helpful aspect of your time at Behrend?

I would say the most helpful aspect was the projects that help give a feel for the “real world” as well as real-world business experience.

Student Spotlight

Bridgette O’Neil

Photo of Bridgette O’Neil

Bridgette O’Neil graduated in Spring 2022 with a dual-major in Marketing and Management Information Systems. To gain experience, Bridgette started a small business in March 2021 called Meraki Marketing. After graduation, she plans to work as a digital marketing analyst/project manager for Jimmy’s Famous Seafood in Baltimore, Maryland.

What is one of the most interesting/unique aspects of starting your small business?

One of the most interesting parts of starting my small business, Meraki Marketing Erie, was getting to know all 21+ of my clients on a personal level while learning in-depth about their core business practices and values. It gave me an entirely different perspective on multiple types of industries!

What has most surprised you about the study of both Marketing and Management Information Systems?

The majors go hand in hand and not only work extremely well together but, when combined, help open more career doors than I would have expected. Having options, rather than being limited in what I can do after I graduate, has made a world of a difference!

Club Updates

Back 2 Business event

Barbie Cessar and James Lai at the Back 2 Business event.

Credit: Penn State Behrend

Update about the American Marketing Association Chapter from AMA Club President Barbie Cessar and AMA Club Vice President James Lai

The American Marketing Association Chapter (AMA) has been highly active over the past year. When we first got back to school in August, we attended the Back 2 Business event and, in early September, we hosted an Ice Cream Social Recruitment Event.

Near the end of September, we hosted a Marketing Professional Panel. The panel allowed us to learn from marketing professionals in the field, including several guest speakers: Jaime Schember, social media lead at Google; Scott Gosselin, senior associate brand manager at Swanson; Abby Badach Doyle, marketing communications consultant at Erie Insurance; and Jeff Stempka, brand manager, Gibson USA & Custom.

Additional fall events included a WebFX career presentation, an ACPC Résumé Building event, an Adobe Illustrator Workshop, and a Mediacom career presentation.

In the spring, we hosted several events, including a joint club résumé workshop, a recruitment table for St. Patrick's Day, a regular meeting, and a Marketing panel with Executive in Residence Jeff Stempka. We also co-hosted the PSCM Internship Panel.

Because most of the executive board graduated this spring or are headed to University Park, AMA at Behrend held elections to fill several open positions.

ACPC résumé event.

Libby Myers ‘21, marketing specialist at Acoustic Sheep, and Barbie Cessar, 2021/22 AMA Club President, at the Black School of Business résumé event.

Credit: Penn State Behrend

Graduating seniors are:

  • Barbie Cessar, president
  • Breanna McClain, vice president of promotions and advertising
  • Valerie Grimes, vice president of finance
  • Emily Wargo, vice president of website
  • Katie Bagdon, vice president of social media

Also, James Lai, vice president, will be heading to University Park.

For more AMA updates, please visit the AMA Behrend Sync page and follow AMA on Instagram.

More News

Product Development Project

Last semester, students in Dr. Sean Yim’s MKTG 475: Product Innovation class worked with client company Fish Gods. Fish Gods focuses on offering environmentally conscious products that are commonly used outdoors by anglers, hikers, and bikers.

Students worked to identify target markets and test consumer preferences of product features to suggest how to improve the product. The students utilized survey methods to better identify a target market.