Marketing Executive Advises Business Students to Build Personal Brands

Speaker with Mercy students.

Elena Rivera-Cheek, M.B.A., founder and chief executive officer of Copy & Art, poses for a selfie with Mercy students and staff. 

On October 17, 2023, as part of the School of Business Executive Speaker Series, Elena Rivera-Cheek, M.B.A., spoke to Mercy University School of Business students about the importance of developing a personal brand. Rivera-Cheek is the founder and chief executive officer of Copy & Art, an award-winning creative agency based in White Plains, New York that specializes in digital marketing and communications.

Rivera-Cheek’s talk was entitled “The Most Important Marketing — Your Own Brand: How Students Can Position Themselves in a Crowded Job Market.” She defined a personal brand and explained that personal branding matters even for college students because potential employers want to know who you are in order to ensure that you are a good fit for the company. She also noted that students should be interviewing employers too: “You're going to spend a lot of time at work, so make sure you love it. Make sure that the company fits you, your life and your goals. That starts with knowing who you are.”

Rivera-Cheek encouraged students to become masters of LinkedIn and had them draft their own elevator pitch. She also asked them to share their internship and volunteer experience too as another way to showcase their skills.

She closed by reiterating, “For better or worse, in today’s world, everyone is a brand. Be intentional about yours.”

The Executive Speaker Series provides students with the opportunity to hear from successful professionals about issues that matter in the business world today. Sometimes, connecting with the speakers leads to students getting internships, part-time jobs or mentors. Indeed, Rivera-Cheek encouraged students to connect with her on LinkedIn, ask her for advice and hinted that she would love to see Mercy students working at Copy & Art one day.

The next speaker in the Executive Speaker Series will be Launette Woolforde, Ed.D., D.N.P, chief nursing officer at Northwell Health. She will present on November 14 from 1-2 p.m. at the Bronx Campus with lunch provided at 12 p.m. for those who attend in person. Register to attend in person or via Zoom.