Campus Life

Ayanna Robinson: UWF Student Turned Entrepreneur

While most college students are planning to start their careers after school, Ayanna Robinson is managing to juggle both college and her own business. That’s right, Robinson is baking UWF a sweeter place with her very own bakery: Yanna’s Sweets.

Robinson is a senior majoring in Public Relations with a minor in Sociology. She has been baking ever since her freshman year in high school.

“I started baking for fun,” said Robinson. “It was therapeutic, but I noticed more and more of my friends were wanting more of my baked goods. From there, I decided to start a business, Yanna’s Sweets.”

Yanna’s Sweets officially started right after Robinson graduated from high school in 2015. Shortly after starting her bakery, Robinson became a licensed baker.

If this is your first time hearing about Yanna’s Sweets, after one glance, you will not forget its vibrant array of desserts or iconic mason jar.

“Yanna’s Sweets overall aesthetic is definitely pink,” said Robinson. “Pink is my absolute favorite color. It’s bright and exciting, and that’s what I would like my sweets to be.”

But starting her own business has not been all sugar and spice and everything nice. The most challenging part about launching Yanna’s Sweets is juggling school, work, baking and, of course, finances. Among paying for classes and books, Robinson has to set money aside for her bakery’s ingredients and testing new recipes.

Despite the hardships Robinson has faced, she said seeing people’s eyes light up when they taste her sweets makes it all worth it. Robinson said she hopes to see Yanna’s Sweets with not only its own storefront but also with several franchises throughout the U.S., but until then, you can purchase her sweets by directly messaging Yanna’s Sweets’ Facebook or Instagram page @YannasSweets.

For college students who also envision themselves as CEO, Robinson has some advice:

“‘Don’t rush the process, trust the process.’ This is something that took me a long time to realize,” said Robinson. “Just because it takes me longer than others, doesn’t mean I won’t get there. My time is coming, but all good things take time. I treat this advice like my cakes. I can’t rush the cakes to finish any faster; I just have to trust in my skills and my great outcome will come!”

Gina Castro is a senior at the University of West Florida where she is double majoring in English Literature and Journalism. When she's not researching new stories to write articles about, she is watching knitting tutorials or obsessing over Toni Morrison.

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