Marketing grad mixes abundant practical experience with creative flourishes

Aleksandra Markiewicz starts L’Oreal internship after convocation

When Aleksandra (Ola) Markiewicz says that learning to communicate with a broad swath of people was a core skill she acquired as an Alberta School of Business undergrad, you know she must have lavished extra effort on it because she’s been communicating to diverse audiences in numerous ways since childhood. 

“I was in a French immersion program from kindergarten through Grade 12 and at home I spoke Polish with my parents and English with my twin sister,” says Markiewicz, who graduates from the University of Alberta in June 2023 with a bilingual bachelor of commerce in marketing and cooperative education.

Long before university, Markiewicz was adept not only at languages but also at expressing herself artistically and athletically. She studied dance from childhood to her late teens — including ballet, jazz, modern, tap and pointe — and piano and kung-fu each for more than a decade.

She volunteered on her high school’s technical theatre team for costuming, hair and makeup and returned as mentor while a university student. She volunteered as a summer program leader for children and youth, and at senior living communities, learning to engage with all age groups.  

Taking almost 20 classes in French to fulfil her degree certainly established Markiewicz’s proficiency at communicating in different languages. But her involvement in an array of student groups at business school taught her how to communicate with an array of demographics, whether through traditional marketing channels, social media or one-on-one networking.

As vice-president external of the Network of Empowered Women, she secured corporate sponsorships for the club’s annual conference in Lake Louise and created a mutually beneficial partnership. She was part of the PINK Campus Team (ambassadors for an apparel company), created digital graphics and social media schedules for Divethru’s mental health campaign and took a lead role in marketing for a Women in Business community initiative. At the same time, she was creative director for the Business Students’ Association, creating event graphics.

While completing the business school’s co-op program, she was a marketing intern for Rohit Land Development, engaging young families in neighbourhoods across Edmonton through social media strategies, campaigns and web pages. For her internship at the business school’s Careers and Work Integrated Learning, she created event-specific brand identities and marketing materials targeting undergrad and MBA students.

“Communication is the common thread through all of it,” says Markiewicz, who saw her attention to the research and preparation that underpins all effective communication pay off unexpectedly when she landed a coveted internship with L’Oreal in Montreal after graduation.

Markiewicz asked pertinent questions about L’Oreal presentations at a business student conference and during subsequent chats with representatives and recruiters. Her long-standing interest in fashion and beauty (she held a part-time job at Pandora throughout her business school studies) also allowed her to shine.

While her vivacity, enthusiasm and her facility with French no doubt helped cinch the opportunity, it’s just as likely that Markiewicz ‘s genuine passion for the art of marketing was the deciding factor.

“I love marketing’s fusion of practical elements and creative twists,” she says. “I love merging the two and problem solving, and I’m excited to learn from new opportunities.”  

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