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"I have been given many opportunities to grow and learn different things/skills I never thought I would"

Ayesha Cruickshank

Wednesday, November 16, 2022

MDLZ in one word?


Tell me about your choice of major at Clemson?

Answer: I always wanted to be an engineer. I first majored in Civil Engineering but after my first internship I realized it was not for me. Clemson allowed me to take a semester of core courses while I went to each department to get a better understanding of each major. I fell in love with Material Science Engineering. It was so interesting to me, and the courses were about manipulation of materials to make great advances. I loved it, and even worked as an assistant to my professor after classes. I think it is important to find something you love or interested to learn. Early on, I picked my major based on what others thought I should be or what they thought a traditional engineer does. I think taking the time to explore all options is very important.

The bakery you were working in closed down and you were able to transfer into a corporate role. What was that like?

While it was an easy technical transition into my new role, it was hard emotionally. Not everyone was able to transfer to a corporate role, so we lost a lot of great talent. I was a bit conflicted between being excited for a new role and opportunity, but having to say farewell to my Fair Lawn Bakery family. I wish there was a course or book that could help you navigate all of the feelings that come with an abrupt change. I have to say having a supportive manager helped so much.

Aysha in a group

Did the pandemic affect the new role you were in?

In my new role I had to adjust from working in a factory to working from home. I missed the daily interactions with coworkers. I currently try to go into the head office at least once a week when I am not traveling. It helps to see people and interact with new colleagues.

You attended NBMBAA in September 2022. What was that like for you?

Attending NBMBAA as a participant was everything I never knew I needed. After my bakery closed last year, in addition to a strike at some of our facilities I found myself running on fumes. I had not taken the time to invest in myself, I just kept plugging away to get the work done. I did not realize I was pouring from an empty cup. Taking the time to attend the conference and being fully present in the moment was an eye opener for me. I gained so much from the courses and the networking. I also got a chance to be still and invest in myself. I am so grateful for being able to attend.

How do you see your future at MDLZ?

I am excited and hopeful about my future here. Working for MDLZ has pushed me to being my best self. I have been given many opportunities to grow and learn different things/skills I never thought I would. I see my future as limitless.