About.com’s Matthew Knell Gives Seidenberg His Executive Advice

About.com‘s Social Media Executive and Pace alumnus (BS/IS ’00) Matthew Knell stopped by last week to explain a thing or two about his work experiences. He has been employed at a number of positions at a number of companies, including JetBlue,  AOL, and About.com. If you recall the blog post from June, Knell was also the moderator for the AOL Social Media Salon. The students who stayed at Seidenberg last Tuesday for the free food ended up staying for the free advice Knell dished out. Not only was he highly informative about Social Media, but he covered a multitude of topics within the world of computing.

To begin with Knell’s forte, Social Media (hereby shortened to SM), a few things he was adamant about. In SM, Branding, or Website appearance, Knell stressed the importance of choosing the right font and having consistent graphics. Specifically, he said to avoid Arial and Verdana (and everyone knows that Comic Sans is the butt of all font-related jokes) and suggested trying out different fonts from Type Kit. As far as consistent graphics go, Knell used the example of the slide show banner that many websites use on their home pages; he explained that it’s visually enticing when the changing graphics have an underlying similarity to them whether it be color schemes, text placement, font, or all three.

For the students who aren’t as concerned with SM, and cared more about the programming and software related positions Knell had experienced, Knell had a few things to say. One student expressed his concern in starting a project, but having it become invalid before it is complete. He asked how Knell would deal with such a sense of failure, to which Knell’s simple reply was, “Drink.”

Everyone got a laugh out of his response before he elaborated with an anecdote. He told the group of a project he had been working on at JetBlue that had failed miserably. The airline had been trying to create it’s own reservation system, but once they were deep into the process, they realized it was necessary to use the system Sabre, which was less restrictive than an exclusive system. Knell’s advice to dealing with the failure was to learn from it and notice the signs before things go sour, and later, when a recruiter asks about it, let it be known where the faults were and they were not your own mishaps.

Everyone thanked Knell for dropping by and giving us his advice. He even looked over Seidenberg’s SM sites to give them a quick review and offered a few constructive points. We have already began implementing them into our posts! So, thank you, Matthew. It was a pleasure having you around and we hope to collaborate on similar events throughout the years.

Spotlight on: Tamika Joseph, Pace Marketing Class of 2005

What does a marketing major have to do with Seidenberg? Not all that much, directly, but indirectly the two are closely related and those who are involved in Seidenberg will eventually bump into the Lubin and Dyson kids down the road. While visiting the offices at Microsoft this past week with the Seidenberg Summer Scholars, I ran into Pace alum Tamika Joseph who is working as an Account Manager for Microsoft. Since Microsoft is so heavily based in computer sciences, I decided to ask her about working along side some of the biggest projects in technology  and how she got there from Pace, even though she works in the more business-oriented parts of the company.

Joseph majored in marketing, with a concentration in Advertising and Promotion, and minored in Statistics during her time at Pace. Afterwards, she continued her studies at Fordham to receive her MBA by 2011 in Communications and Finance while minoring in International Business. When I asked about her position at Microsoft, she stated that her favorite part is the culture within the workplace. Even from an outsider’s point of view, touring around the headquarters warrants the same reaction.

Joseph’s position consists of processes that can be challenging, but her determination keeps her on par with the company’s expectations. Naturally, I asked how Pace played a role in her path towards scoring a position at Microsoft, other than offering her a degree; Joseph recounted the bonds she made during her undergraduate career, her success in graduating at the top of her class, and how she landed a full-time opportunity at Disney-ABC upon graduating at only 21 years old. Joseph also mentioned her C+ Programming class, which she passed with ease, and how it was pivotal in directing her toward where she is, today. And lastly, because I always ask for a woman’s advice, Joseph added, “[when] working in a predominantly male field, persistence and determination are key. Never give up!”

Thank you, Tamika, for you enlightening words and may your success encourage Pace students of all focuses to realize how realistic their goals can be.

Seidenberg Alum at New York Tech Meetup (NYTM)

New York Tech Meetup (NYTM), if you haven’t already been, is a must for anyone interested in the NYC tech scene. My first time attending was on Tuesday, November 13th–a special NYTM dedicated to the work in, by and for academia. There was a wide array of students and professors presenting their own work, and also professionals building software for use in education. The work shown was mind-boggling in many ways–from DOM, a student developed bookmarklet that transforms any website into an interactive 3D environment, to Qeexo, a group at Carnegie-Mellon exploring new ways of interacting with touch devices.

New York Tech Meetup (NYTM), if you haven’t already been, is a must for anyone interested in the NYC tech scene. My first time attending was on Tuesday, November 13th–a special NYTM dedicated to the work in, by and for academia. There was a wide array of students and professors presenting their own work, and also professionals building software for use in education. The work shown was mind-boggling in many ways–from DOM, a student developed bookmarklet that transforms any website into an interactive 3D environment, to Qeexo, a group at Carnegie-Mellon exploring new ways of interacting with touch devices.

I was especially excited to see Jeremy Pease, an alumni of the Seidenberg School, and his partner Rob Caucci, also a Pace alum, present first. They demoed their start-up company, Space Splitter. Space Splitter is “Forever changing the way roommates manage their household finances and relationships.” This is a perfect description of Space Splitter–a platform to use when you and your roommates can’t remember who is supposed to buy toilet paper next. Admit it, we have all been there, and Jeremy made sure to remind the audience of that (to their overwhelming amusement). I must admit, Rob and Jeremy are quite theatrical–the audience was absolutely engaged throughout their demo.

Our friends Emmett Butler and Diego Garcia, both students at NYU, came onto the stage soon after. They just released a game called Heads Up Hot Dogs, published by Adult Swim Games, about dropping hot dogs on people’s heads. Yes, I did say hot dogs on people’s heads. These hot dogs are dropped right from your fingertips onto the heads of oblivious pedestrians, to chagrin of your pixilated uptight businessmen, joggers, cops and whomever else may be wandering the frank-fest streets of Heads Up Hot Dogs. Emmett and Diego gave a demo of their game that showed off the drag and drop touch screen dynamic. I don’t think he was trying to make jokes, but Heads Up Hot Dogs is so fun and quirky that the audience was giggling uncontrollably every time Emmett said the magic words “hot dogs.”

Once the presentations were over, and we were all inert from the shock of everyone’s overwhelming talent, we got to head upstairs to the after party! There were tables set up for the presenters to show off their work and a great crowd to boot. Everyone grabbed drinks, networked and had an awesome time chatting.

My experience at NYTM was incredibly positive and I must admit that I regret not having gone before. The people there are friendly and enthusiastic about technology. If you want to meet the best of the best then I recommend checking out the next NYTM event. You can check out their website here: http://nytm.org

 

Written by Nina Freeman

Matt Knell to Serve as First Tech Mentor-in-Residence

At the invitation of the Seidenberg School, Matthew Knell (MS/IS ’00), director of social media at AOL, has assumed the role of Tech Mentor-in-Residence for the 2011-2012 academic year.  In this capacity, he will share his considerable expertise as a social media marketer and Web technologist with members of the Pace community. Continue reading “Matt Knell to Serve as First Tech Mentor-in-Residence”

Seidenberg Extends Warm Welcome to new Director of Development

The Seidenberg School extends a warm welcome to Pam Yosh, its new Director of Development. Pam comes to us from SUNY New Paltz where she has served as an individual gifts officer. She replaces Dawn Rigney who has assumed the newly created position of Executive Director of Alumni Relations and Annual Giving for the University. Continue reading “Seidenberg Extends Warm Welcome to new Director of Development”