Breann Gardner works with a team of professionals to guide development of television commercials, radio announcements and social media campaigns to bring brand awareness to customers.
The 22-year-old Hubbardston native works at Meijer with the brand development team as an agency project coordinator. There, she specializes in project management, working with top digital and creative agencies to develop a variety of Meijer’s media images.
“I manage the relationships we have with our agencies, ensuring clear, daily communication,” she says. It’s a critical role in branding and marketing for the supermarket chain that boasts about 200 stores in Michigan, Illinois, Indiana, Ohio and Kentucky.
Gardner earned a Certificate in Liberal Studies with high honors from Montcalm Community College in May 2010 before transferring to Grand Valley State University where last year she completed her Bachelor of Science degree in Advertising with an emphasis in public relations.
Gardner chose to attend MCC to complete many of her basic courses before transferring to a university. At MCC, she completed requirements for the Michigan Association of Collegiate Registrars and Admissions Officers (MACRAO) agreement, which grants smooth transfer of 30 credit hours of coursework to be applied toward a student’s general education requirements at participating Michigan institutions.
“I wanted to attend a small, yet credible college, that was close to home before transferring to a university,” Gardner says.
“My experiences at MCC were great. The classroom sizes contributed to a healthy learning environment and the staff and professors were wonderful. They were truly engaged and wanted to help,” she says. “I was able to get a great first year’s education that prepared me for the larger university setting.
“MCC prepared me not only for a four-year university, it also helped me gain the knowledge and soft skills I needed to enter the workforce,” Gardner adds.
While attending GVSU, Gardner served as president of the GVSU Chapter of the Public Relations Student Society of America (PRSSA), Vice President of Operations for GrandPR, and was a communications intern at Amway in Ada, Mich.
“My year-long internship with Amway was amazing,” Gardner says. “It helped me understand how a fast-paced global corporation operates – how to strategize and think big.”
In addition to her position at Meijer, Gardner serves as the Vice President of Collegiate Relations on the board of the American Marketing Association (AMA) of West Michigan, where she works with student AMA chapters to help them create more engagement between the professionals and students.
“As a young professional myself, I believe students are the future, so it’s important for them to have professional mentors they can look up to,” she says.
In addition to her coursework at MCC, Gardner gained real-world interviewing, reporting and writing experience as a volunteer in the college’s Communications Office.
“To this day, I use my press release examples that were published in newspapers as examples in my portfolio,” she says.
“MCC truly values education,” Gardner adds. “The instructors, campus, classrooms and teaching techniques are truly state of the art. I was able to learn, gain knowledge, volunteer and make a difference all while attending MCC.”
Gardner and her husband, Ryan, reside near Lowell.