Kirsten's professors brought industry experts into the classroom.Something that is special about my major is that the professors go out of their way to bring the real world into the classroom. I've met many people in the industry because my professors invited them into class, and I've been to news stations and production studios on field trips. The professors here are dedicated, thoughtful, and some of the smartest humans I've ever met. If a job opportunity lands in a professor's inbox, they'll send it straight to their students to pursue. She flew over the Atlantic Ocean for the first time with her Core class...My favorite Core experience was travelling to Spain and Portugal with my Aesthetic Expressions class taught by Gary Scudder-it was my first time flying over the Atlantic Ocean. Connecting what we had been studying in the classroom and seeing and experiencing those concepts firsthand in new countries was astonishing. My favorite part of the trip was the Prado Museum in Madrid, Spain, because I was able to see the amazing pieces of art that we had read, talked and written about. It definitely was a very unique experience. On interning at Champlain's Emergent Media Center...I was the Video and Audio Producer on the Stern Building Blocks team. I was responsible for recording and editing all of the voice-over audio for around 30 hours of videos that we created for the new Building Blocks online 3-credit course, which teaches people how to teach children language and literacy. I also produced, filmed and edited the introduction and conclusion videos of Stern's CEO for the course. Being on this team gave me the opportunity to combine my creative skills with people who have different skill sets to create a product for a client. When I apply for jobs after graduation, this internship will show that I have previous experience working with clients, and that I can handle a large quantity of responsibilities while being able to work in a team environment as well as by myself. She lives an active lifestyle through her on-campus involvement...I am a Ski and Rider Club officer and a member of the National Society of Leadership and Success. I play intramural soccer, and I am on the Women's Rugby Club team. I enjoy all of these extracurricular activities because they have allowed me to meet so many more people on campus and make new friends that I probably wouldn't have met any other way. They also keep me active, and I enjoy spending my time doing fun things with these people. Her advice for prospective students...Be proud of your work. Be motivated, passionate and don't be afraid to share your ideas. Champlain's culture is creative and mindfully-stimulating, and everyone encourages making your visions into realities. This is a place to dive right in to whatever you're into.
Kirsten, Broadcast Media Production majorCornelius, NCStudied abroad in Auckland, New ZealandDIVISION OF COMMUNICATION & CREATIVE MEDIA
Conor appreciates how career-focused his major is.I was looking through the Princeton Review for top game design schools, and Champlain caught my interest. I had to visit! I always wanted to be a game designer growing up, so the Game Design major was perfect. When I stepped on campus for the first time, I could really feel the career focus that Champlain has. The faculty were willing to show me what their classes were working on, and they answered every question I could come up with. I love being able to work in teams to make games. When it's finished, I feel a huge sense of accomplishment, and it's amazing. His Core class created a piece of art in Burlington.Core has actually made me want to travel the world. I was lucky enough to get to go to the 2016 Olympics in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, and I got to experience all walks of life and cultures in one place! My favorite Core experience was getting to do a 70' x 100' spray paint mural for the new Generator Space in my Aesthetic Expressions: Street Art class. It was an awesome research project that is now a permanent work of art in Burlington. The classwork has made his experience unique... I got to make an arcade-style game with a team that was really fun to create and play. The game uses a steering wheel and Wii remote gun to shoot aliens and drive through a wasteland. I have learned so much from this one project, and it has been one of my favorite experiences at Champlain. Conor has been able to share his knowledge with young gamers... I am a Student Ambassador on campus. My job has taught me how to communicate with people from all walks of life. It helps my public speaking skills, and I get to interact with important people on campus. I also worked for iD Tech over the summer, and I got to teach what I learn in classes at camp. I love getting to help campers make levels in Unreal Tournament 4. It's really awesome getting to experience that feeling of success with them.
Conor, Game Design majorSouthlake, TXStudied abroad in Montreal, CanadaDIVISION OF COMMUNICATION & CREATIVE MEDIA
Montse was excited to jump headfirst into her major...When I was younger, I always considered myself an artist and was lucky enough to attend a boarding school which focused its curriculum on art. While I was there, I fell in love with the camera and knew I had to stay behind it for the rest of my life. It was very important to me to be able to expand my skills within my craft from day one, and Champlain was one of the few schools that were willing to let students jump headfirst into their majors. Being able to set foot on a film set as a first-year student definitely sets my experience apart from that of my peers who are attending other schools, while also allowing me to explore my passion for advertising through the Marketing minor. She went to Zanzibar with her Core class...Core serves as a vehicle by which students can learn about other people and how different parts of the world function, all through a curriculum that emphasizes the importance of perspective and empathy. My favorite Core experience has been Professor Scudder's Aesthetic Expressions travel course to Zanzibar. Within this course, we analyzed art forms from various cultures and what art means to people in different parts of the world. As someone who considers themselves an artist, it has been a magical experience to find a Core class that not only emphasizes my interests but also connects to my major. What Montse loves most about Burlington is...What I like most about Burlington is that if I feel like going for a hike during the day and getting dressed up for a night out, I can do both in the same city. Burlington's charm is epitomized by its touches of art and nature on every corner of the street. Murals decorate walls along Church Street, which is just minutes away from a calm walk by the lake. Burlington has everything available, which makes it the perfect, well-rounded place to go to school. Getting involved with many aspects of campus life provided her with unexpected benefits...I am the President of Alianza Latinx (a Latino/a affiliation group). I am involved in CHAMP (Champlain Has Activities and Motivational Programming) and the Stiller Women in Business groups, and work with the Office of Diversity and Inclusion. Within these clubs, I've been able to broaden my perspective on diversity on campus and proudly represent my heritage and interests. I have also worked as a junior video producer for the Emergent Media Center and the Department of Strategic Communications, as well as held a position as a Resident Assistant and Communication & Creative Media division representative for the Student Government Association. These positions have allowed me to strengthen and develop leadership and organizational skills, and directly apply to my major-related coursework.
Montserrat, Filmmaking majorPhiladelphia, PADIVISION OF COMMUNICATION & CREATIVE MEDIA
In addition to taking classes at Champlain, Olivia started her own art and literary magazine, Trash Mag. The magazine follows a theme each issue, and features writing and art with a focus on acceptance, feminism and creativity as a common thread that links each issue together. Keep reading to learn more about Olivia's Champlain journey...
Olivia knew she wanted to write but she wasn't sure what. The Professional Writing program allows her to explore various genres instead of confining her to a single one.
When I was looking for colleges, I knew that I wanted to attend a school with a strong writing program. Specifically, I wanted a major that wasn't going to be an English or Literature program. At the beginning I really wasn't sure what kind of writing I liked best, so I wanted to dip my toes in all different types (journalism, poetry, fiction, creative nonfiction, screenwriting, etc.) instead of pledging to a certain discipline. Champlain gives you that possibility.
One of her most rewarding moments was...One of the classes that has proved most rewarding was the Publishing in the 21st Century course. In that class, I got to publish an anthology of Champlain student-written poetry. We did mostly everything ourselves, from choosing the poems and photographs and designing and sending off the files to the printer, to coordinating where we would sell the publication. It was a real-world experience that translated directly to my major and what I want to pursue in my career, which is incredible.
Olivia feels empowered to reach her goals thanks to the work she experienced in her major.Because of my work within classes, I feel enabled and empowered to pursue activities outside of class that utilizes the skills I've learned. Every single day, I feel like I can employ the things I learn in writing classes, as well as what I've learned through professional portfolio classes. I have started my own publication with a friend off-campus, and I have had the opportunity to work with my advisor to workshop my poetry. I really feel like I am able to use the skills that Champlain has helped me build, and apply them to real life.
Other reasons she loves Professional Writing at Champlain...The Professional Writing program is so wonderful because it feels like a little bubble of inclusivity. Our artistic license and wingspan is constantly supported by every one of the faculty members. I love that we are treated like both artists and technicians in our writing. All of my professors take my writing seriously, and that is important to young writers. When you're just finding your footing as an artist and as a student, it can be so frightening to try new things or test out forms you've never done before. It's important to have a group of people there to support you and enable your growth, which is what every member of the writing program has done for me.
What's next for Olivia?Leaving college, I'll have a jam-packed résumé that will be recognized in the real workplace. I feel like I have been given a toolbox and be more successful because I am prepared. I do want to continue my education and possibly go on to get a Master of Fine Arts degree in Poetry (or something else, who knows!). But I am also hoping to make the publication I am working on a successful one and continue to broaden that post-graduation. I would also love to move around, experience other parts of the country and be free for a while before settling into anything long-term.
Olivia, Professional Writing majorLouisville, KYDIVISION OF COMMUNICATION & CREATIVE MEDIA
Duncan loves the variety of classes that Champlain's Communication major offers...
I was never the person that wanted to study just one subject. When you come here, you dive into graphic design, marketing, public relations, broadcast and public speaking. We have a variety, I wouldn't be able to get that kind of exploration at any other institution.
His professors share their experiences in their field in the classroom...
Champlain professors can come into a class and say this is from a first-hand perspective of everything you should know going into the field. They also have career relevant connections. For my Broadcast Writing course, my professor actually worked at WCAX full time. We were able to go to the studio one day and see a live recording of the Channel 3 news. My professor was there and was willing to bring us into her studio with open arms.
Duncan gained hands-on experience interning at a radio station ...
I've had an internship at Regional Radio group in Queensbury, NY. I was a cohost on the air with The Hits 95.9 at 6:00 am. It was a hands-on experience, and I became more comfortable on air. I even learned how to use a soundboard and got sales and marketing experience. When I start interviewing for jobs after graduation, I know I will be able to list off all of my new skills.
After graduation, Duncan is ready to enter the communication field...
I want to go into TV and radio and use my platform to better the lives of other people. My Communication degree and all of the things that I have learned inside of the classroom and through extracurriculars will help me reach my goals.
To incoming students, Duncan says...
If you don't know what you want to do, that's OK! Explore. Find the major that's right for you. If you do what you love, you'll love what you do.
Duncan, Communication majorQueensbury, NYDIVISION OF COMMUNICATION AND CREATIVE MEDIA
Juliette's classes allowed her to get started in her major right away. I've always been a creative person and graphic design seemed like a great way to express that creativity both in the classroom and in the professional field. I think that jumping right into the Graphic Design curriculum during my first year has definitely helped me grow as a student. Initially, there are a lot of preliminary steps you need to take, such as learning how to navigate certain software or how to articulate design language. Learning those skills early on has allowed me to hone my design skills and become more confident in my field.
Being able to see something that starts off as an idea and turning it into a living, breathing entity is definitely something that I love about the creative process. I love seeing how many iterations and changes you need to go through before you can produce something you're really proud of.
In addition to her major-related classes, Juliette finds a lot of value in her Core classes.
While focusing on my major is obviously important, I think that being aware of what is going on around you-both locally and globally-is just as important. Especially being a graphic designer, I feel that I'm very aware of this because I know images can easily transcend cultural and language barriers. They're universal. Because of this, it's important to recognize who your audience is and how your work might be interpreted around the world. Core has helped me think about other cultures and how that might affect my own designs.
On internships and work-study positions... I was the Graphic Design Intern at Burlington City Arts (BCA) in the summer of 2017. My duties included creating promotional materials for events and exhibitions, digital signage and social media assets, as well as printing vinyl signage for events, classrooms and office spaces. I also helped set up and run the Festival of Fools, which takes place on Church Street every summer. Seeing my designs all over Church Street was very exciting and rewarding for me. Having a basic knowledge of the rules and concepts of typography, color theory and design language in general, which I learned in the classroom, definitely prepared me for my internship. I now have connections with people at BCA, who are not only talented designers but also great people, and I can look to them for recommendations or job opportunities in the future. Having that experience on my résumé will give me a competitive edge. I've also worked in the Emergent Media Center at Champlain, and this year I'm working for Nic Anderson, the Director of Transportation, as his Graphic Design Assistant. The work-study jobs I've had have allowed me to continue honing my skills in graphic design. I've been able to apply my skills to real-world situations and learn how to work on a team and collaborate with other designers.
Juliette, Graphic Design & Digital Media majorNorth Yarmouth, MEStudied abroad in Auckland, New Zealand DIVISION OF COMMUNICATION & CREATIVE MEDIA
Meg took a class in high school that made her want to go into Game Art & Animation.I originally wanted to be an aerospace engineer. Then, in my senior year of high school, I took a game development class. I had a really fun time with it, creating things that people experience when they play games.
On professors...I love my professors, they are there for you and give you feedback that really helps your projects be the best they can be. Overall, Game Art & Animation is extremely difficult but very rewarding; I wouldn't want it any other way.
With the Upside-Down Curriculum, Meg didn't have to wait to experience her major.I was able to start getting my skills right away instead of in my junior and senior years. I was able to get through the rough stages of learning new programs with low-quality work to really make a good portfolio in my final years that will keep me competitive with other game art students around the world. She spent a full year studying abroad.I studied abroad in Montreal for a full school year. It was by far the most valuable experience I've had so far at Champlain. I got to learn from people who are working in the industry and see what it's like at those studios when we went on tours. The Core system up there was almost entirely project-based instead of paper-based, and it allowed us to be flexible with what we were learning in class. The food and culture were amazing, and the Montreal staff were always friendly and helpful. An Advanced Seminar in Montreal has helped her focus on her future.In my junior year in Montreal, I took an advanced seminar for game environments, and I thought that was super useful and really helped me get to the level I want to be at for my work. We spent 9 weeks making one really strong portfolio piece, and I definitely don't think I would have created such great work without my professor's comments. In my junior and senior years, I really got to focus on projects for my portfolio, and that was kind of scary and exciting. It's making me plan for my future outside of college.
Meg is prepared for what comes after graduation.Champlain often brings in game alumni and game companies to show us what their expectations are for the actual job market. This helps me sort through all the confusion and stress that comes with not knowing what to expect out there. They also tend to give valuable information on internships, jobs and technology they are using or exploring. Best part of Burlington: the downtown Farmer's Market on Saturdays.Burlington's nice. I can walk almost anywhere, and there are plenty of bars and restaurants that are fun to go to. It's very much a college town, it's got something for everyone. I really enjoy the Farmer's Market—my boyfriend and I go every Saturday.
Megan, Game Art & Animation major Appleton, WIStudied abroad in Montreal, CanadaDIVISION OF COMMUNICATION & CREATIVE MEDIA