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How the student-run business Treasures by Tresure takes bake sales to the next level

Fourth-year Commerce student Tresure Gary successfully founded a profitable baking business as a full time student

<p>Gary’s business has proven to be profitable, with the help of her popular desserts like the strawberry crunch brownie or her cookies and cream bar. &nbsp;</p>

Gary’s business has proven to be profitable, with the help of her popular desserts like the strawberry crunch brownie or her cookies and cream bar.  

While many large and small businesses alike contribute to the University community, one small student-founded business in particular has flourished and spread sweetness on Grounds. Fourth-year Commerce student Tresure Gary has capitalized on her combined passions for baking and entrepreneurship by founding her own pastry business.

Gary is the founder, owner, baker and sole entrepreneur of the baking business Treasures by Tresure. Gary was a second-year student who had just applied to the McIntire School of Commerce and completed the required prerequisite courses when she decided to start her business. 

“I knew this would be a good way to apply everything that I was learning to my own business,” Gary said. “I was also taking an entrepreneurship course, which motivated me to start my own business as well.”

Alongside her enthusiasm for entrepreneurship, Gary’s passion for baking travels back to even before college. In high school, Gary took a catering class which allowed her to cater for school events. She learned how to bake a cake from scratch and expanded her skills in the kitchen by trying other recipe ideas she found on Pinterest. 

“I kind of just used to do it for fun,” Gary said. “I would post what I made and people would ask, like, can they buy it or things of that sort? So I decided to turn it into a business.”

With an entrepreneurship course, a business license and a knack for baking, Gary created her business from scratch despite the COVID-19 pandemic in January 2021. Although starting a small business was not part of her life plan, demand for her unique pastries prompted her to create Treasures by Tresure. 

Since then, Gary has been operating Treasures by Tresure for over two years. Gary has strived to provide unique and original flavors with a homemade touch in her products. She sells pastries such as brownies, cupcakes and mini cheesecakes. 

“These are treats that you wouldn't find in a typical bakery,” Gary said. “For example, I make a strawberry crunch brownie, which I haven't seen in any other bakery.”

Gary’s business has proven to be profitable, with the help of her popular desserts like the strawberry crunch brownie or her cookies and cream bar. 

“It [strawberry crunch brownie] sounds a little strange, but it's similar to if you've ever had the strawberry shortcake ice cream, there's a crumble that's on it — I recreate that crumble and put it on top like a strawberry batter,” Gary said. “I also make cookies and cream cookies, which are like the cookies and cream Hershey bar, I have chunks of that in it. With Oreos, white chocolate all in one cookie — it's like the best thing ever.” 

Gary is able to manage being a full-time student and an entrepreneur with the help of a Google Calendar for time management, but readily admits that this task is not easy. 

“It's really hard, especially when it comes time for group work,” Gary said. “You have to explain, it's not like a solid job with solid hours — you have to literally make the time.”

Treasures by Tresure has derived its popularity on Grounds by catering University events and pop-up shops. Gary sets up her pop-up shops at Newcomb, near the food trucks or in schools such as Commerce. 

“Through my website, there's a contact form for people that need larger catering orders,” Gary said.

When Gary is not catering for University events, she sells her products through pop-up shops around the community. Gary announces when and where these pop-up shops are through Instagram and her website.

Gary’s most recent pop-up shop was for St. Patrick’s Day, where she sold some of her homemade treats. She is aiming to do another one in April or end of March before she graduates this May.

After graduation, Gary plans to continue running her business. She will be moving to Arlington and plans on doing pop-up shops there. In the future, she hopes to run a dessert truck and possibly return to Grounds. Through her business, Gary has not only found a way to meaningfully engage with the community but also found a passion.  

“It's also something that I started completely from scratch,” Gary said. “I feel like it's like my child. I know I’m raising it right and I see it grow and the only way I could see it grow is if I invest my time into it.”


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