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Meet an alumna with a knack for communications

Jen Faizon

I just had a passion for communications and I thought I could apply that in so many areas.

Jen Falzon went into marketing and public relations in part because the graduate from University of Guelph-Humber’s Media Studies program was hoping for a diversity of opportunities – and she certainly found it. From working with major Hollywood stars to tech industry giants and now journeying back to the world of higher education, Falzon’s career has offered her exactly the type of excitement that she was hoping for.

When she originally started at UofGH in 2003, she thought she might pursue journalism or photography. After two years of coursework here, she realized that while she was still passionate about those disciplines, the world of public relations and marketing might have been an even better fit.

“It was actually a bit of a surprise that I decided to specialize in PR,” she recalled. “I just had a passion for communications and I thought I could apply that in so many areas.”

Falzon didn't have to wait long to see the sort of variety her field would offer.

While still studying here, she landed a field placement through UofGH at the Bata Shoe Museum as a public relations and fundraising intern, giving her a first taste of working in a non-profit environment at a museum she loved.

After graduating from UofGH in 2007, Falzon became marketing and public relations project coordinator for DECOSTA Marketing, a brand management company where Falzon wrote online content for clients including Will Smith, Jamie Foxx, Kevin James and Kids Help Phone.

“That was a great fit for me,” she remembered. “I was developing content and working on the official websites for these huge stars, which I thought was just out of this world. I was kind of head over heels.

“What I liked about the smaller environment is that I got to dive right in. There were a lot of opportunities right off the bat, which you don’t always get at a larger company.”

From there, Falzon joined Align Inc. as agency partner and account/project manager. There, Falzon had the opportunity to work with BlackBerry’s Digital Marketing Team, where she was responsible for helping to manage product and software launches. The position gave her the opportunity to travel and work in Amsterdam, Malta and California.

After five years with Align, Falzon joined yconic and eventually became director of marketing, bringing her back into the world of education.

She followed that thread to her current position, director of marketing and strategic growth at Enactus Canada, a global non-profit dedicated to using business to help address social issues.

In many ways, it feels like a special fit for Falzon.

“I really was excited about working with students and empowering students to drive change in their communities,” she said. “I’ve also taken on a new business development role in terms of strategic growth, and I have my own team now, which has been really rewarding.

“There was a time in my life I wanted to get into teaching, so this combines the best of both worlds. I really do love being in the post-secondary space and combining my passion for marketing and education and students.”

Looking back on her time at the University of Guelph-Humber now, it’s the community feel and dual approach to learning that stand out to Falzon.

“What I still love and promote is the fact that not only are you learning about theoretical concepts, you really get that hands-on experience that gives you the opportunity to apply what you learn in the classroom to the real world,” she said.

“I didn't want to be just a number. I wanted to go somewhere where I could interact with my professors, access them more easily and have meaningful conversations and be a part of a community that was engaged and interactive. I think University of Guelph-Humber really offers that.”