CommLeader Highlights|Fritz Kessler, Cohort 13

10580659_823711297669156_8503784814354561828_oGraduation date or expected graduation date: Spring Quarter 2015

Area of interest (within the MCDM program or in general):

I love learning how to create compelling, long-form content for the web, and leveraging the best tools in digital/social media to promote that content.

What exactly do you do professionally or what are your professional goals?

Currently, I’m in Product Marketing for a local tech company, and my long term goal is to be creatively independent as a transmedia storyteller, and work with as many different people and organizations (especially non-profits) as I can.

Which classes have had the most impact on you personally and professionally?

Anita’s class, Leadership through Story and Community, did the best job at making me think “oh yeah, in our digitally enabled and revolutionized world, there’s no reason not to try and bring as many of your creative passions to life as possible.” And Rick McPherson’s Business Fundamentals class crammed more information into my brain about what it takes to create a digital business venture than I thought possible in a mere 9 weeks.

What digital trends are you most intrigued by right now?

I love how publications are keeping long-form storytelling alive by adapting to modern trends in web design and content strategy.  I think a site like Pitchfork does a great job with these trends, creating a vital mix of content that’s ready for immediate consumption and content that’s so well written and designed that it really justifies spending more time with.

Career-wise, what is your ultimate digital media goal?

What I really want is fluency with digital media tools in a way that can best support my overall goals as a content creator, whether the content is digital or analogue in nature.  If I’m doing another story on homelessness in Seattle, what tools can I use that give people a greater window into that experience?  What can they see in my story, what can they hear, what can they interact with? What’s the best way to engage people using modern tools, in a way that supports, and doesn’t overwhelm, the story I’m telling?

As a full-time or part-time student, how have classes worked into your schedule?

I work full-time and attend classes part-time in the evenings.  It’s a challenging balance, but overall I like the feeling of maximizing my productivity, and having the opportunity to apply my learnings from class the very next day at work.

What’s your favorite Comm Lead experience?

My project in winter quarter was an exploration of homelessness in Seattle, and having the chance to interview so many resilient people who have fallen on hard times, and then hopefully share their stories in an impactful way for my project, was quite meaningful for me.  Second place goes to cramming 10 classmates in my car for a drive around the block to get out of the cold on a freezing night in December.  Not a school sanctioned activity.

And for the sake of a silly question:

What’s the strangest food you’ve eaten and under what circumstances?

Well, it might not be the strangest, but one of the Cohort 13 students from China who has become a good friend recently tricked me into eating pig intestine for the first time.  It was surprisingly tasty, albeit awfully chewy.  Think of it as spicy meat gum.


Ilona IdlisCommLeader Highlights|Fritz Kessler, Cohort 13
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