By Jenna Yeomans '19
When Amber Richardson ‘13 graduated from the Business – Marketing program at Mohawk, she wasn’t done yet. She went on to earn a Public Relations graduate certificate in 2014. Since then Amber has done incredible things with her Mohawk education, with a commitment to strategizing and serving her clients well and helping young professionals make the most of their careers.
Early on in her Mohawk journey, Amber knew she wanted to study public relations, and is grateful she was able to stay at Mohawk to study in the graduate certificate program. She says the program helped take her writing skills to the next level.
While still studying at Mohawk, Amber landed a position as a junior marketing associate which allowed her to gain real work experience and eventually earned her a management position at the company. She enjoyed her time there, but realized the commute was time that could be better spent at home.
With a former classmate from the marketing program, Amber started a PR firm, Richardson & Associates. She didn’t leave her job right away, working there for one and a half years before leaving to solely focus on her own company. She shares, “one of the biggest reasons I decided to become self-employed was so I could spend time with my family and have time to be free. That’s really the most important thing to me.” Her main focus from day to day is client retention and finding new clients— following up, building relationships and ensuring her clients’ needs are met. Another primary focus for Amber is developing PR strategies, creating a plan on how to reach the client’s goals and completing the copy writing part of the plan.
Alongside her business, she’s also the vice-chair of Hamilton HIVE, a go-to resource and networking hub for young professionals. Amber says of the volunteer position, “I needed to do something more. I wanted to give back to the community and work with young professionals so it’s really just a great opportunity.”
She encourages graduates to find networking opportunities. “When you go out there with an open mind, the opportunities are there,” says Amber. “If you’re passionate about what you do, you can find them. It might not be the 9-to-5 job you were looking for but you can always find ways to better yourself in your career.”
In Amber’s experience, although there have been challenges along the way, the most difficult transition was from student to the working world. “When you first start out, you can feel alone at times, but once you find people you have connections with you’ll be okay again.”