Alumni in Action
Alumni Spotlight: Sami Birch
Current job title
Marketing & Communications Manager at Mission Design & Automation
Describe your current position
As the Marketing & Communications Manager, I manage all social media platforms and content creation (blogs, case studies, brochures, press releases, etc.). I also work with marketing automation software and CRM to track lead performance and opportunity lifecycles. I manage our website, and I’m Mission’s on-site photographer and videographer for company events as well as products – I take all photos and videos of our custom industrial automation machines. I also do some technical writing – instructions for machinery and work instructions.
To what extent does writing relate to your current position? / What type of writing/design do you do for work?
Writing and design is in everything I do. I work in InDesign, Photoshop, and Illustrator daily to create graphics, posts for social media and our website – blogs, case studies, brochures, and more. Some of this is a mix of creative and technical writing, and I use technical writing for instruction manuals and procedures.
Please briefly describe your path from graduation at GVSU to your current position.
After graduating from GVSU in 2013, I joined JR Automation as a technical writer and worked with our project teams to write instructional manuals for custom automated manufacturing equipment. After two years of technical writing, I transitioned into JR's marketing department as a Marketing Specialist, working with social media, document design, website content development and design, etc. In 2016, I moved into JR’s sales team, growing into the CRM and Analytics Project Manager position for JR Automation’s global team, including all locations in the United States, France, Romania, and Singapore. Wanting to get back into the more creative side of the business, in 2020 I moved companies, joining Mission Design & Automation as the Marketing & Communications Manager.
What parts of the writing major had the strongest impact on you as a professional?
The Document Design and Writing for the Web courses, as well as professional writing and business communication.
What advice would you offer to current/future writing majors at Grand Valley?
Be open-minded to what you don't know, and always be willing to learn something new.
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