Two faculty members in the College of Creative Arts were selected as Innovation, Design and Entrepreneurship Academy Faculty Fellows in 2016. Selected by the Office of the Provost, each Fellow in the program is creating a new course or redesigning an existing course.
Jeffrey Moser is a teaching assistant professor of interactive media at WVU as faculty at both the College of Creative Arts and Reed College of Media. For media students, interactive media delivers emergent digital and interactive design skills while art and design students expand their knowledge of narrative methodologies, multimedia and visual storytelling.
Moser is preparing students to visualize, design and create interactive technology that has become ingrained into society through his new Advanced Interactive Design course.
“With the transformation of media from text-based stories to visual interactive narratives, the Reed College of Media recognized the importance of visual literacy and interaction design in both journalistic and strategic communication context,” Moser said. “Rather than duplicate the skills taught in the School of Art & Design, a partnership was formed to bring students from various disciplines into the same classrooms, where media students explore the elements of art and design and art students explore content gathering and new media storytelling. Both groups of students also learn about programming interactivity, a topic which has traditionally been the purview of computer science, but is a necessary skill for anyone working in digital media.”
Over the course of the semester, Advanced Interactive Design students work with teams of computer science students to develop game mechanics, audiovisual assets and design 3D printed gaming consoles. Working with Raspberry Pi microcomputers, cameras, controllers and digital screens, the teams design and execute a working prototype. At the end of the semester, students will present their project as a proof-of-concept demonstration to a panel of alumni entrepreneurs, WVU communications professors and industry investors.
In the School of Music, Darko Velichkovski is using his IDEA Fellowship to provide students with professional field experience through Mon Hills Records, WVU’s student-run record label.
Working as Mon Hills Records’ various department managers, associate managers and associates, students in the course are learning the processes, practices and methods of entrepreneurship and innovation necessary for a small record label’s survival in the industry.
“The course focuses on actively enabling, encouraging and supporting students to embrace their own path to progress and professional advancement,” said Velichkovski, director of the music industry program. “Each student has an opportunity to productively contribute to the label’s entrepreneurial goals based on their own interests and professional aims.”
Though housed in the School of Music, Velichkovski’s course is open to all students. Based on their interests and skills, students take over every aspect of the record label, from market and opportunity research and recognition, production, sales, distribution, accounting, graphic design, administration and more.
“Much more goes into the music industry then just singing, playing and recording,” Velichkovski said. “This is also true in other industries, where you see the end product, but don’t realize how much multidisciplinary effort goes on behind the scenes. This course teaches our students the inner workings of an industry and why it’s necessary to have teamwork, collaboration and cooperation skills.”