I just returned from a wonderful and productive iMedia marketing trip to Boston. Aside from great visits to colleges and universities I connected with two of our first year (’10) graduates who now live and work in Boston. Laura and Matt Hunter. Yes, they are both Hunters. Not only did they graduate with a master’s in interactive media from Elon but they met, fell in love, and were recently married.
Matt is the Digital Marketing Designer for the Boston Bruins and TD Garden. He designs, develops and manages content for Boston Bruins and TD Garden digital assets, including social media, mobile, email marketing, in-game experience, client renewal campaigns and web sites. Laura works as the Digital Media Producer at the Boston Convention and Exhibition Center (BCEC). They both explained how Elon’s iMedia program contributed to landing their current positions.
Laura told me, “iMedia basically equipped me with all of the skills I needed to land this job. The program gives the introduction to the Adobe Suite and you are expected to take off with whatever interests you. Since this job was so new and the Convention Center didn’t quite know what they needed in their ideal candidate, the array of skills that I had from completing the iMedia program was what attracted them the most to me. From there, I was able to use the resources I was introduced to in the iMedia program to find tutorials, inspiration and enhance my skills even further. Essentially I’m a hybrid between a project manager and a content creator. ”
And Matt, “Without my iMedia degree I wouldn’t have landed my current job. Prior to enrolling at Elon for the iMedia program, I had little to no experience in anything relating to communications/digital/etc. In one year, the iMedia program provided me the tools and experience for someone in my current field to succeed.The iMedia program provided me the tools and experience I needed to succeed. It’s a program filled with students from different backgrounds and skills all with their own passions and goals, but also with the willingness to collaborate and learn from each other. You will learn from your teachers, classmates, real-life experiences, fly-ins, failures and successes.”
Matt and Laura both love their jobs and I truly believe that is one of the best things in life…loving your job. Laura told me, “The best part of my job is that it’s ever-changing. The Convention Center hosts conferences that bring so many types of people through its doors: from coffee baristas, to dental professionals, to tech companies to seafood industry professionals. The scope of the client base keeps things fresh and new with every project that comes our way. Additionally, there is a lot of creative freedom to design whatever my heart desires on the huge digital canvases available to me. It’s a fun opportunity to bring some of my own random ideas to light and have thousands of people see it each day. It’s been a great experience to be a part of a team that is the pioneer for this type of signage in the industry and to be successful in bringing the industry on-board with this new technology. The potential for growth within my team and the company is huge, which is also a great factor.”
Matt talked about his job as well, “I am a Digital Designer by title but I have had the chance to work on so many other projects at work outside of the typical graphic designer role. I’ve shot and cut videos, designed and developed websites, created t-shirts and posters. This is also what I think is the best part of my job. I get the chance to work on so many different types of projects.
And to tell the truth, getting the chance to go to hockey games, basketball games and concerts is pretty neat too.”
A unique cornerstone of the iMedia program is the strong connection between alumni and current students. Matt and Laura both had words of wisdom for the class of 2014.
“Although you are getting an amazing degree that will put you ahead of a lot of people out there in the digital media world, the degree alone won’t necessarily get you the job. Networking and making new connections is and always will be the key to getting in the door to your job. This field is new and companies are still trying to figure it all out, so walk out there with confidence that you have an array of new and wonderful skills and they will be interested in what you have to offer.”
“I would tell students (specifically students who aren’t sure of what direction they want to go) to learn as much as possible while you are enrolled. While I was a student in the program, I often worried about what specific tool or skill I wanted to hone in on and “master.” Did I want to be a graphic designer? A web developer? A video editor? Copywriter? Animator? In the end, I didn’t focus on one specific aspect or skill while at the iMedia program. I took it all in and tried to learn as much as possible. When I graduated, I was knowledgeable on several aspects of the digital landscape. I felt like I was prepared to take on any position because I had built such a solid foundation at Elon.”