Amber Santos always knew she wanted to work in the apparel industry, but it took a couple of high fashion internships to realize that her passions were more in line with sport than the runway. The California native earned her undergraduate degree from California State University, Long Beach with a major in business administration and a minor in fashion merchandising. She is currently a first year MBA student in the Warsaw Sports Marketing Center.
Santos’ first position out of CSU Long Beach was at ETA Agency (formerly known as ETA Advertising). While at ETA, she gained experience across all areas of the agency business, doing a little bit of everything for a diverse portfolio of clients.
Santos then joined RPA Advertising. During her time there, working on their Honda account, she was promoted to account executive. Santos led a team of five people and managed Honda’s traditional advertising. “I learned a lot and enjoyed the team management part of the job,” Santos reflects. “It was challenging, but really rewarding.”
Santos says she is drawn to marketing because of its psychological aspect. “I like getting into the consumer’s head,” she said. “I think it’s so interesting to be able to take the consumer’s answer to a simple question and build an entire campaign around it.”
Santos is an avid athlete and runs regularly. Her mission is to run 30 half or full marathons before she turns 30. She has run 14 races so far, on pace to reach her goal. “Over the course of my life I have always been involved in sport. Being able to inspire people through sport and encourage them to get outside more is something that I am really passionate about. I would love to be able to mesh my passions with what I want to do professionally in marketing.”
Santos recalls sitting in on an Oregon MBA information session and thinking, “This is it. This is where I want to go. The location is perfect—so many sports companies are in the Pacific Northwest.”
Her Warsaw Center experience so far has more than exceeded her expectations. “There have already been so many opportunities to connect with Warsaw alumni and industry professionals,” Santos says. “I have met a lot of incredible people who are willing to help and give advice to Warsaw students looking to learn more about the industry.”
Moving forward into this summer and after graduation in 2018, Santos plans to combine her agency experience with her passion for sport to pursue a career in brand management for a sports apparel company.