SSU marketing student finds career path as entrepreneur


PORTSMOUTH-Using her business education to her advantage, Shawnee State University senior Malea Delawder (Hometown: Ironton, Ohio) started her own business in 2021. Launching Made by Malea as an outlet for her creativity and interests, Delawder specializes in making and selling handmade jewelry. What started out as a hobby of hers, has aided her in her studies as she has been able to apply what she was learning in the classroom to her business.

“When I started my business, I didn’t expect it to grow to what it is now,” she said. “I started by posting items I have made on Instagram and Facebook, and it started to get chaotic keeping up with orders.”

Majoring in Marketing, Delawder was able to apply everything she was learning in the classroom to her own business practice. Within her classwork, she has been able to experience real scenarios that helps put her ideas into perspective.

“I then created a website and was able to use my social media platforms to drive traffic to my online shop,” she said. “I attended a lot of vendor markets around the area, which helped my growth by word-of-mouth.”

SSU’s Marketing program allows students to gain real-world experience through agency projects, internships, practicum work, and special workshops. The program partners with local businesses, non-profits, and other organizations and allows students to explore professional communications tactics and consumer research. Students in the program spend substantial time learning to use technology to solve specific marketing problems.

“I am very grateful to have gone through this program,” said Delawder. “It not only helped with my business, but I feel confident going into my future career.”

Graduating with her degree later this spring, Delawder plans on continuing to grow Made by Malea. Inspired by the marketing program, she is looking forward to exploring her entrepreneurial journey.

“I hope to never stop running my business because not only is it something I have worked so hard on, but I love just being able to create new items,” she said. “Along with that, I hope to one day open a brick-and-mortar store to display my items and have the opportunity to meet new people every day.”

To learn more about the Marketing program at Shawnee State University, visit

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