Telling Our Stories: UPEI eMBA

Amber Jadis P. Eng, MBA - Owner, Bricks 4 Kidz PEI // Owner, CoSolved Consulting

Like many people who have pursued their EMBA from University of Prince Edward Island, Amber Jadis was working full time and enjoying a successful career as an engineer when she decided it was time to return to school. Amber, who had previously graduated from UPEI in 2001 and Dalhousie in 2003, felt that there was a very logical fit between the work she did as an engineer and obtaining her MBA. Business and engineering go hand in hand.

A big part of the appeal of the EMBA program at UPEI for Amber was the fact that it was located here at home on the Island. With many of the other programs Amber had looked into she was going to be required to travel or do all of the work via distance learning and neither of these options was appealing to her. For Amber, having the face to face conversations with colleagues was very important.

If you ask anyone about their experiences while pursuing an EMBA they will tell you that it is a lot of hard work, the group work can be a bit intense and it is always going to be a challenge to balance working full time, with studying full time, but ultimately it is totally worth it. “I always recommend the program to people, especially engineers. For anyone who aspires to management or see themselves moving forward in their careers this is a logical next step.”

Amber, who comes from a family of teachers, soon realized that education was in her blood. While she loved the work that she was doing at the architecture firm she realized that she wanted to start something on her own. “My MBA degree gave me the confidence to go out and do something myself.” She learned about the Bricks 4 Kidz franchise via a Dalhousie alumni newsletter and didn’t waste any time reaching out to the company, who were quick to respond. Amber crunched the numbers and did a business plan and it wasn’t too long before Bricks 4 Kids PEI became a reality. Before starting Bricks 4 Kidz, Amber was disappointed in the lack of STEM (science, technology, engineering, math) opportunities for students locally but since opening her doors in 2014 Amber has had after school classes in almost every school on the Island, from Souris to Tignish, teaching children about science and engineering with Lego. “I am so excited to be able to share with children what engineering is and so proud of what the students accomplish and seeing what they create.”

In addition to her work with Bricks 4 Kidz, Amber maintains a thriving business and engineering consulting company, CoSolved Consulting, working with a number of businesses and community partners across the Island with a special focus on business consulting with aboriginal communities. Amber is thrilled that six years later her EMBA signature project, Aboriginal Tourism and Traditional Basket Weaving on Prince Edward Island, is still relevant.

Amber, who is striving to do something that will not only make a difference in people’s lives but leave the world a better place, always makes time for the things, and people, that are most important to her no matter how busy she is with work and lives her life by this simple statement: “If you are not dreaming, then you are just sleeping.”

“Realizing I could speak on an equal ground, that my opinions mattered, and that I had something to contribute was life changing. I got confidence through the process not to be intimidated by senior staff and management.”

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