ADDWSU Alumni Panel Offers Digital Media Advice

Ike and Russ invited an alumni panel, former students from the inaugural ADDWSU class to share their experiences with the class this past Thursday. The members of the panel discussed the digital media tools they learned from the class and how they have been applied to their current careers. Having the former students return and share what they have learned was very beneficial and seeing where they are now, with jobs in their career fields is promising. It was refreshing hearing from people that were just in the same position as us one short year ago. This coming Thursday there will be an alumni panel of graduates from the Wright State University Department of Communication if anyone is interested in hearing what other recent grads are doing with their degrees.

    ADDWSU Digital Media Alumni Panel

ADDWSU Alumni Panel Sharing Digital Media Experience

Lovensheimer, Kinner, Clark, and Young after speaking to the class

Jake Young, Fibre Glast, Justin Kinner, Alpha Media,Jake Clark , Atomic Interactive, and Nicholas Lovensheimer, Naked Lime were all once students at Wright State University and alumni of the first ADDWSU class from spring semester 2015. They all have careers in digital media in one facet or another. Kinner seems to use his skills learned from class the least, but did admit that there are times when he does use the tools obtained from ADDWSU and they have been very helpful with his job. Young is using his skills learned in both DDWSU and ADDWSU, but is also writing code and doing eCommerce work. Clark and Lovensheimer both specifically work with digital marketing. While each of these individuals has a specific job title they made it very clear that they do a little bit of everything.

Get Certified And Be Well Rounded

One key thing each member of the panel shared was to obtain any and all certifications that are related to digital media. The more certifications one has, the more opportunites one has for optimizing themselves and maximizing their skills. Prospective employers are looking for people industry ready and to be able to say you are gives you the edge over any competition. Having a well rounded skill set is also a plus being multi-faceted opens up more doors than only having a specific narrow skill-set. While this may be the case for many fields it is specifically true for digital media.

My Thoughts

After hearing from the speakers it made me want to broaden my horizons even further and expand my knowledge and skill-set. I want to be able to apply for jobs and know that I am the best option! If I maximize my potential and not only know my stuff but am able to talk about it and discuss it intelligently, I know that I will put myself at the top of any list of applicants. I hope there are plans to have other speakers in as Ike and Russ have done in the past, because it has always been highly beneficial.

Feedback

How do you guys feel about looking for work after graduation? Do you feel better or worse since the alumni panel? Does hearing from recent grads and their experience in digital marketing make you want to pursue a career in the field?

18 thoughts on “Alumni Panel Shares Real World Experience

  • February 15, 2016 at 2:37 pm
    Permalink

    It was incredibly beneficial hearing from the ADDWSU alumni panel in class last Thursday. As many of us are pursuing jobs in the digital media marketing field; I believe that the information shared by the recent graduates gave me insight into what to expect from the professional environment and how to better prepare for it. I particularly benefitted from discussion about the interview process, familiarity with digital industry tools, online certifications, and on-the-job experience.

    Jake Clark, Digital Marketing Strategist with Atomic Interactive, mentioned that he was asked by an interviewer which publications he read to stay current on industry trends. I know that it is important to follow industry leaders but I did not consider setting aside a few hours out of my week to read Social Media Examiner, Mashable, or even the Wall Street Journal. I plan to make that a priority moving forward. I also thought it was interesting that all four panelists applied for a specific role, but their role quickly became more diverse once they acquired a little experience on the job. Their similar experiences reinforced the idea that I have to broaden my skill-set from best social media practices to a digital marketing perspective. Companies want to make a return on investment, and they want confident, professional individuals to help them grow digitally using proven strategies.

    The panelists all agreed that obtaining a certification in Google Analytics other similar digital tools is paramount. Overall, you have to be intentionally proactive in preparing to pursue a career in the digital media marketing industry. Utilize your resources and accept help from others pursuing a similar goal. Knowing what to do is vital, but knowing the how and why is of utmost importance. After hearing from the panel, I believe that I have more direction moving forward.

    Reply
    • February 15, 2016 at 8:19 pm
      Permalink

      Eli, it’s nice to hear that the panelists coming to speak to us has allowed you find yourself in a position in which you have more direction. I definitely am going to look into becoming certified in Google Analytics after hearing what they had to say as well as after looking at potential employment qualifications.

      Reply
  • February 15, 2016 at 8:11 pm
    Permalink

    I enjoyed reading your blog, and reading the things you found valuable from our classroom visit. For the most part I agreed with the panelists. Their experience had some similarities, especially, as you noticed, the fact they all had more duties than the job they signed up for.

    I was really surprised to hear one or more of them say their studies taught them nothing, with the exception of Russ and Ike’s class. I wasn’t surprised to hear some of their struggles after hearing they learned little in college. GPA is not a goal for a job, but benchmark for which to measure your commitment for yourself. I was half kidding when I asked them if they sucked at social media because they had to do so many other jobs. If you want to show ROI, you need more than social media marketing strategy or a certificate in Google Analytics. You’ll need to have some comprehension of human psychology, how people act, philosophy, how people think, and most important communication skills, just to begin with. Ike and Russ teach these things, but there are many opportunities to learn this in all our classes.

    In the end, you must be able to anticipate, communicate, assimilate, create, and sell. These skills are taught in many forms, in different classes. Everytime I write a paper I’m selling an idea, and my grade often reflects how successful I was in accomplishing that. This is valuable practice for the future.

    Of all the things I teach my son, one of the most important skills is to understand how you do anything is how you do everything. Attitude, commitment, focus, and success is the same in the classroom as it is on the diamond (he’s a baseball player and an All American at age 12). I think understanding these leadership principles, that is leading yourself principles, may be the difference between a career and a job.

    I’m thankful for having those guys drop by and pass on their experiences. They were gracious and candid. I think Russ and Ike were imparting more information than what the panel was saying. At least it’s worth considering as we reflect on our possibilities for the future.

    Reply
    • February 15, 2016 at 8:26 pm
      Permalink

      Denny, I couldn’t agree more about GPA, while it may not be important to some it is important to me. Like you said it is a benchmark to measure yourself. It allows me to know that I am going above and beyond to show myself and others that I respect myself and my education. I also agree that there are things to be learned in every class and if someone only allows themselves to learn from what they are interested in, it does not allow for one to broaden their horizons and receive a well-rounded education which is pretty much the purpose of a liberal arts degree. I think it’s great that you are passing on your values to your son, you have a very respectable work ethic and you carry yourself extremely well.

      Reply
  • February 15, 2016 at 9:29 pm
    Permalink

    What a great class we had this past Thursday. I thought the class was very informational and those four guys definitely gave me a huge insight on what to expect, be prepared for and even some tips when job searching after I graduate. I have to agree with Eli about when Jake mentioned in one of his interviews that he was asked what publications he was currently reading. I think this is an extremely helpful tidbit of information because having some sort of reading around that’s aimed towards the field you’re interested can only benefit you in the long run. Plus, having to tell your interviewer you aren’t reading anything would just hurt your odds in getting the job.

    What I enjoyed the most is that these guys reiterated what I had already been thinking. That Russ and Ike’s classes were very beneficial to them. If you’re looking to enter the Digital Marketing field, these classes are getting us prepared for what lies on the other side of graduation. The certifications and always changing information on digital media that they supply to us on a weekly basis in class is so helpful. It’s something to me that’s intriguing and always captures my attention. One final thought I have is how refreshing it was to hear these ADDWSU alumni speak on how this class truly helped them be prepared in the real world. What I can do now is take the rest of this semester and really try to absorb everything we learn to sharpen my digital and social media knowledge for the future.

    Reply
    • February 17, 2016 at 8:12 pm
      Permalink

      I agree with both you and them the things that I have learned in class from Ike and Russ have had such an impact on what I do in both school and work. I do use skills from other classes, but in totality I have learned more from them than any other class or professors.

      Reply
  • February 16, 2016 at 3:03 pm
    Permalink

    I’m not too sure how I feel about work after graduation because I’m planning on working for myself opposed to working for someone else. The reason I say I’m not sure about how I feel is because it’s not like I’m scared about not having a job or just a primary source of income but I’m not 100% sure that my brand will be big enough to live off of by the time I graduate, which is Fall 2016. I do feel better since the alumni panel because I realized that the stuff we’re learning are actually valuable in the real world and also the certifications will be very useful long after college ends.

    Hearing from recent grads and their experience in digital marketing doesn’t make me want to pursue a career in the field because it sounds very frustrating. It doesn’t sound awful but I was never interested in going into this field way before I heard from the grads so yeah they basically help confirm that I much rather use social media for my personal brand instead of using it for someone else. But who knows where life takes me after college I may end up working in digital marketing for a couple of years, not everything has to be forever; I just want to love my job and have fun doing it.

    I really do appreciate them for coming to speak to us because all my questions about this field were answered and I enjoyed listening to their old stories from Ike and Russ class back in Spring 2015!

    Reply
    • February 17, 2016 at 12:01 pm
      Permalink

      I definitely see how it is beneficial to find out both the good and the bad about the career field. I think not every career is made for everyone and it was good to hear both sides.

      Reply
  • February 16, 2016 at 8:03 pm
    Permalink

    I agree, I think meeting with recent grads helped ease my anxiety about finding a job after graduation! As the panel mentioned, certifications in the class are important; that really motivated me to brush up on my skills with already obtained certifications and focus on bettering myself as I work towards new ones. I wasn’t originally aiming for a social media/digital marketing job to begin with, but they success they had in their jobs definitely made it something worth looking into for me and gave me a new outlook about the skills we’re learning in class.

    Reply
  • February 17, 2016 at 1:47 am
    Permalink

    To start, this is a great summary post for a very informational class we had last Thursday. I feel like my knowledge and understanding of what to expect at a career based job interview has grown a lot. And with this comes the confidence you need to actually pull it off. I’ve personally noticed that if you talk more in depth at an interview, offering more than what they initially asked you, your chances of getting the job are a lot higher. But In order to do that you really need to know exactly what you are talking about, and know a lot of it. Eli also brought up something important that I originally forgot about, Jake Young mentioned in one of his interviews that he was asked which publications he likes to read in order to stay current on industry trends. It had re-occurred to me that staying on top of whatever you list on your resume is crucial in being able to back yourself up and look credible when the time comes. This also proves that you are reliable and helps them feel confident that they are making a good ROI decision by hiring you. The one downside to the social media field is that it changes so much every few years or so, so it’s a priority to stay on top of whatever it is that you do. When you get the job it’s also extremely important to know exactly what you’re doing. Nobody wants to look like an idiot, so it’s best to prepare yourself and have the confidence to know that what you’re doing is the right thing to do and it’s going to work. This applies especially to those who obtain social media positions where no one else knows exactly what it is you do or what the purpose of it is.

    Another thing, just as Eli said above, Google Analytics is a must in a lot of different fields. If the job has anything to do with digital marketing, then Google Analytics is always a plus. This goes along with just about all digital certifications, so I can see why obtaining as many as possible is helpful. I think we should touch more on Google Analytics in future classes as it’s a really beneficial tool to use and it’s also pretty fun to play with.

    All in all, one of the best and most informational classes we have had yet. This class has eased my job searching concerns and provided me with enough insight on what to expect after graduation.

    Reply
    • February 17, 2016 at 12:03 pm
      Permalink

      It most definitely seems as if Google Analytics is on the to-do list of certifications to obtain. I know it is something I will be doing in the near future.

      Reply
  • February 17, 2016 at 11:28 am
    Permalink

    I always appreciate when we have people who are in the field come in and talk. Sometimes when you’re in classes it can seem like what you’re learning will have no real-world application so it feels kind of meaningless to learn. That’s why it’s so refreshing when people come in and reinforce that what you’re learning really does matter. It kind of gives you that extra push to really take in what you’re learning and not just memorize something because it’s going to be on a test.

    A few people have mentioned it, but I thought it was really eye opening how everyone said that they were hired to do one thing but were eventually asked to take on many different roles. That really gives me a lot of motivation to go out and get as many certifications as I can, even if it doesn’t seem to be related right off the bat. Anything that gives a prospective employer an idea that you’re more versatile than other applicants will certainly give you a leg up in the interviewing process.

    And to answer the question, I feel a lot better about looking for work after listening to the panel. They’re four people who were in our exact shoes and who all have jobs in the social media field, so that’s proof positive that it can be done. Just from hearing them talk it sounds like the certifications and skills we’ll gain from this class will give us a huge advantage when it comes time to enter the workforce.

    Reply
    • February 17, 2016 at 12:04 pm
      Permalink

      I think seeing people we look to as peers, because of how recently they were here was a big selling point on knowing the goal of working in the field is obtainable.

      Reply
  • February 17, 2016 at 11:47 am
    Permalink

    I thought the panel was pretty cool and very informative. My feelings towards finding work after school still stands. I still feel nervous in general in finding a job after college just because I personally felt im ready but not ready. Also I feel it’s stupid that employers are looking for graduates with like thirty years experience but graduated in four years.

    I feel also the panel kind of reinforced in what I already thought about just any job you go in no matter what field, you have to have more than one skill set. The GPA thing still puzzles me but it’s probably because im transferring majors. I do like that employers are looking for experience rather than GPA. I am considering the social media path as a possible career if nothing works out or look into digital media managers for music brands or brands in general.

    Reply
    • February 17, 2016 at 8:19 pm
      Permalink

      I agree that it seems crazy that they want so much experience for jobs that could easily be filled by grads with the right skill sets.

      Reply
  • February 17, 2016 at 5:43 pm
    Permalink

    I must say, I thoroughly enjoyed the ADDWSU alumni who came back to speak to us on Thursday night. They all are currently working in different, yet similar fields and it was comforting to know that all of them have applied what they learned in the class to their current jobs. There were a couple things I took away from the panel:

    1. Important Skills- I’m just now starting to realize that knowing about HTML and how to work with it is such a valuable skill to have in digital marketing. Website maintenance/optimization and blogging all fall under that category. Other important skills to have deal with graphic design and analytics. I’m glad that we are starting to get into a little bit of all of those skills this semester.

    2. New Tools- I had never heard of tools like Crazy Egg, Yahoo Gemini and Dreamweaver. I thought knowing about different SoMe management platforms like Hootsuite and Sprout Social were enough. This just goes to show that going into the digital marketing field will always be a learning process.

    Hearing from the alumni panel did make me nervous about pursuing a career in digital media/marketing because they all agreed you would have to put on many hats. It’s not just going to be about social media, there will be other tasks to do and skills I’ll need to learn. But nonetheless, I think I am still really excited to head in that direction because I think it fits me the best.

    Reply
    • February 17, 2016 at 8:18 pm
      Permalink

      It was interesting hearing that they do so much more than their job titles might suggest, but then again most jobs do. So, I wasn’t too surprised but then again there was a part of me that was. Every day I think I am enjoying digital and social media more and more. I have been applying for 2 jobs in the field per day and will continue to do so until I find a job, so hopefully I find one I enjoy. Also Bruce I feel like it best suits me as well!

      Reply
  • February 17, 2016 at 10:44 pm
    Permalink

    Great summary of last week’s class. I was grateful for the opportunity to hear from the alumni because they gave us candid feedback and described what to expect in their real-life positions. It calmed some of my fears, but also raised new ones as I suspect that it may take 12 interviews like Jake had to get a job! I learned that confidence is key, and that if I learn the concepts and take the certifications seriously so that I am able to speak to them, I can have a leg up over others.

    Reply

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>