UT School of Visual & Performing Arts

Archive for November, 2014

On the uHeart Digital Media Conference

This fall, five students – Anna Bui, Opal Dunlap, Lydia Sims, Gina Todd, and Shelly Trivisonno – received scholarships from the CoCA Dean’s Office to attend the uHeart Digital Media Conference. We asked them to fill us in on their experiences.

ANNA BUI

What is your major?
My major is New Media Design.

What interested you about attending this conference?
I attended this conference because I love learning about technology and digital media.

What did you learn from the event?
I learned a lot about the business aspects and using social media as a marketing tool.

Did you have a favorite speaker, and what did you take away from his/her presentation?
All the speakers were great and informative! I really enjoyed Brian Buirge and Jason Bacher. They were entertaining and clever. They discussed their many failures with their startup and it is neat to see how far they have come!

How do you think what you learned at uHeart will help you in your school and professional work?
There are more skills I am interested in learning to become a well-rounded professional. As a designer who has an understanding of the basics of programming, I now want to learn more about the business aspect of the industry.

Did uHeart change the way you think about professional opportunities after graduation?
Yes, most definitely. Attending uHeart definitely opened my eyes to possible career options that I might want to venture into.

Would you recommend this conference to your classmates and colleagues?
I would definitely recommend this conference to my colleagues. It is truly inspiring to be in an atmosphere surrounded by professionals in the digital media industry. Technology is the future and I want to be a part of it.

OPAL DUNLAP

What is your major?
My major is Communication with a concentration on Broadcasting.

What interested you about attending this conference?
I was interested in attending the conference because I am a business owner who needed to acquire more information on building my brand.

What did you learn from the event?
I learned a lot from the event. I learned about not only building my company brand, but also my personal brand. I learned to do what I am passionate about and never hesitate. I learned skills that can help me move my company forward.

Did you have a favorite speaker, and what did you take away from his/her presentation?
All the speakers were wonderful. My two favorite speakers were Brian Kibby and the guys from Good F***ing Design Advice. I also loved Larry Burns.

How do you think what you learned at uHeart will help you in your school and professional work?
What I learned at uHeart will not only help me in my school and professional life, but in life, period. uHeart taught me a lot about digital media and how to use it effectively, but it also taught me to go after what I want passionately, to block out negativity and that failure is a part of success.

Did uHeart change the way you think about professional opportunities after graduation?
Yes. uHeart changed my thoughts on professional opportunities after graduation, because it showed me how to go after them and gave me the courage to do so.

Would you recommend this conference to your classmates and colleagues?
I would recommend this conference to everyone even those who do not own a business. I was honored to win a spot at the conference and even if I don’t next time I will try and get the money to go again. I loved the experience and opportunity it presented to me.

LYDIA SIMS

What is your major?
I have a double major with Communication and Theatre with a focus on broadcasting and performance.

What interested you about attending this conference?
One of the major things that interested me about this conference was the digital media aspect. I wanted to get a deep understanding of what companies are doing to get prepared for our changing world of multimedia. I found this pertinent information because I do want to become a multimedia journalist. Also, I learned that there is huge market for everyone, and you have to be very persistent about knowing what you want plus have goals to measure your success. As a company or as a person you have to be willing to lean new things and adapt.

What did you learn from the event? Did you have a favorite speaker, and what did you take away from his/her presentation?
All the speakers offered great knowledge, but hands down my favorite speaker was Brian Kibby! He was amazing. I felt like he was talking directly to me. Some of the content of the speakers was a little hard to understand if you did not work in the everyday work force. However, Kibby talked in a manner and on topics that everyone could take something away. One of the best highlights from his speech was personal branding. He talked heavily about using social media to only enhance your personal brand. Never be negative on social media and always be positive no matter what is going on in your life. If you are serious about what you want to do, start a blog. This gives your future employer something to read about you before your interview, thus giving you a leg up above your competition.

Kibby also talked about going over and above to be prepared for your interviews. He gave a personal testimony that he said shaped his career. He was applying for a position in a company that was starting a company in a new location. He said he did what he always did for a job interview. Lo and behold, he did not get that job because he did not go over and above. The person that did get it the job took the time to travel to that location and ask around to the employees about making the company better. Kibby stressed the importance of standing out above your peers.

Also, another great speaker was Sean Nicholson. He took the concept of marketing to a whole different level. He took a extremely difficult concept and made it simple to understand with his Prezi presentation.

How do you think what you learned at uHeart will help you in your school and professional work?
The concepts that were shared at the event definitely enhance my school work and will ultimately alter me as a professional worker. One of the key things that I took away was to seek opportunity now and go above and beyond my employer’s expectations.

Did uHeart change the way you think about professional opportunities after graduation?
uHeart definitely changed my mindset about professional opportunity. There were professionals there that had a bachelor’s degree in something completely different then what you’d suspect. However, if you market yourself right and know the end goal you can do anything with your degree. That is another thing learned from Kibby.

Would you recommend this conference to your classmates and colleagues?
I would definitely recommend everyone to participate in this event, it broadened my goals and gave me a position outlook on my future! One of the highlights that I recommend for next time is bringing Brian Kibby back.

GINA TODD

What is your major?
My major is Communication with a focus in Broadcasting.

What interested you about attending this conference?
I was interested in attending this conference because I attended last year and had an amazing experience! I learned so much and had a great time doing it, so why wouldn’t I want to come back?

What did you learn from the event?
I learned quite a bit at the conference, but the greatest thing I learned was how important it is to market yourself. My generation is full of innovators and we are a lot more powerful than we think! Being intelligent is a power itself but it’s wasted if you don’t know how to sell or present yourself.

Did you have a favorite speaker, and what did you take away from his/her presentation?
My favorite presentation was the one we saw from the founders of Good F***ing Design Advice. Of course, it was hilarious and definitely stood out beyond other presentations, but the message lying beneath all of the humor was also very powerful. I loved that they showed us all of the mistakes and struggles they dealt with when starting up their business and how they got through it. I’ve always been a positive person but the biggest part I took from their presentation is that positivity should be permanent, even when things are going terribly wrong.

How do you think what you learned at uHeart will help you in your school and professional work?
What I learned at uHeart will help me in school and professional work because I now have a better understanding of marketing myself and making myself stand out above others. There is always going to be someone better and worse than you at something, and how much you shine in a room full of people with the same qualifications and experience you have is completely up to you.

Did uHeart change the way you think about professional opportunities after graduation?
uHeart completely changed the way I think of opportunities after graduation. I want to do everything I can right now to have a great social media presence because that is what I really want to work with. I’ll start with getting ready to create my website and hopefully a blog! I never thought I’d leave the conference wanting to work in media as badly as I do now, and I am extremely interested in working for Google!

Would you recommend this conference to your classmates and colleagues?
I would definitely recommend this conference to my classmates and colleagues. No matter what your major is or whether or not you have your own business, we are living in a digital world. Media controls absolutely everything nowadays and understanding ow to function within media is crucial. Businesses cannot survive without digital media in this generation, so I would strongly advise everyone to start creating a positive digital footprint.


SHELLY TRIVISONNO

What is your major?
New Media Design Practices BFA

What interested you about attending this conference?
As a design student, I think it is important to see what professionals are doing and how it relates to what I am learning in my classes. As a business minor, I was interested in seeing how people used both marketing and design within their specific field.

What did you learn from the event?
There was quite a wide variety of speakers that presented at the conference. Many entrepreneurs spoke about the many failures they encountered along the way before they found success. Many spoke about the importance of innovation and staying relevant in the marketplace through rich engagement with their customers.

Did you have a favorite speaker, and what did you take away from his/her presentation?
Lacie Sandstom from Google and Brian Kibby from McGraw Hill were both exceptional speakers. Lacie spoke about aligning utility within the market and how to keep customers interested and coming back for more. She gave a lot of good examples of how Google and other companies are constantly reinventing themselves and their brand.

Brian Kibby spoke a lot about creating a genuine personal brand and how hard work goes a long way. He also spoke about optimism and enthusiasm being the key to sustained success and keeping up these standards on the web and social media.

How do you think what you learned at uHeart will help you in your school and professional work?
uHeart Digital Media Conference was an amazing experience. It further reinforced the importance of passion and determination in the field while also informing us on the new technologies and social media tactics being used by some of the big players in digital media.

Did uHeart change the way you think about professional opportunities after graduation?
I am always nervous about getting a job after graduation. uHeart showed me the wide range of work there is in this industry and all of the passionate people I have the opportunity to work with. I also was able to talk to some of the speakers that really resonated with me.

Would you recommend this conference to your classmates and colleagues?
I would definitely recommend this conference to classmates and colleagues. When I walked out of the first day of uHeart, I was completely inspired and couldn’t wait for what the next day had in store. At this part of the semester, it seems that deadlines are colliding and coursework is getting harder to handle. uHeart got me out of this mid-semester slump and reminded me that I am in the right field and gave me that second wind of inspiration that I really needed.