With Thanksgiving next week, we’re introducing one of Softheon’s warmest employees known for her propensity to give. Enjoy this piece as a reminder to choose kindness as you go into your holidays.
Rebecca Hayman, our marketing associate, is a native of Long Island. Not only did she grow up here, she attended Stony Brook University, receiving her undergraduate business degree with a specialization in marketing in May 2019.
There Rebecca took on several advising roles. First, as a mentor to students commuting to the university. Second, as a student adviser to the dean of the business school providing recommendations on how to improve education and programming.
She also found the time to pursue her passion for dancing. Rebecca took her first ballet class at age three and fell in love. She continued to dance competitively as a teenager and later joined Stony Brook’s dance team. When the university took away the dance minor she was pursuing, she pushed herself to find a new passion.
One night, she uncharacteristically landed on the Food Network while flipping through the channels. Chef Nancy Fuller was creating a checkerboard cake—a chocolate and vanilla cake that reveals a checkerboard pattern when cut.
Rebecca felt compelled to make her own checkerboard cake. Little did she know this would be the inception of an e-commerce baking business centered on charity (@bakeitlikebecca). She continued to experiment while picking up orders through word-of-mouth. Her most interesting conception was barbecue sauce-based brownies. “I love challenging myself. Not everything turns out perfectly, but that’s part of the process,” Rebecca said.
She continued to build her business through social media while finishing her junior and senior year. She learned how to turn “the spark of happiness” from desserts into an opportunity to help others. In honor of her grandfather who endured triple bypass surgery, she ran a Valentine’s Day bake sale with proceeds going to the American Heart Association. She also anonymously donated 100 cupcakes to a soup kitchen in Rocky Point.
On centering her baking in social good, Rebecca said: “Helping someone else grounds you. You can think life is hard, but then you realize someone is going through worse.”
From powering her baking business through social media, Rebecca realized how much she loved working on social networks. After speaking to her followers through Instagram Live she learned she enjoyed the creative freedom that comes from working with “snippets of content.” She also appreciated social media’s ability to condense the distance with her followers, speaking directly and candidly over their shared love for desserts. “It really feels like an extension of myself,” she said.
After completing a string of marketing internships with Nature’s Bounty, an advertising agency and the Stony Brook University career center, Rebecca started to think about jobs during her senior year. Dabbling with the idea of working in New York City, she ultimately decided to stay on Long Island since she loves it so much.
She met with a representative of Softheon at the school’s career fair and learned of a marketing associate position here. The role was centered on events, which intrigued Rebecca, as she had not focused on this side of marketing before. Once she learned of the marketing team’s upbeat, tight-knit culture, she knew it was the right fit.
Since accepting, Rebecca said, “I’ve learned about the full scope of marketing. I definitely have a more complete picture.” Beyond running events and our annual summit, Rebecca also heads our social media and email campaigns, allowing her to continue to flex her muscles on social networks.
“I’m always learning. Things move at a fast pace here, so I appreciate that my work isn’t monotonous,” Rebecca said. She has also become well-versed in health care, understanding the fundamentals of the Affordable Care Act and keeping up with industry current events.
As for her plans for Thanksgiving, Rebecca plans to make a pie. “Maybe I’ll do a funky one,” she said. She will also hang out with her puppy Lily and continue to manage her social media presence as a dog influencer.