On Friday, May 24, 2019, my husband Jim and I set off on the hour and a half drive to Corvallis, Oregon to be keynote speakers at the Adobe Creative Jam happening at Oregon State University.

Jim and I have given speeches together before, but not since our time spent together as Membership Directors for AIGA Jacksonville. So this was a really exciting opportunity that involved a lot of late nights and hundreds of post-it notes.

 

Adobe Creative Jams take place at various schools and businesses around the country. These events typically involve a workshop and a one day challenge to learn and use an Adobe product, with the best team receiving a prize.

Adobe Creative Jam Keynote

The product at the center of this Creative Jam session was Adobe XD—the very application that we use here at Station Four to create wireframes and design prototypes for our clients.

 

We spoke about our careers and point of view on the topic of transparency in technology. I was happy to offer some insight into Station Four’s web design process, walking them through a typical project from discovery through sitemaps, wireframes, design comps, then development and QA.

 

These are the types of things I remembered enjoying as a student— not just looking at pretty work designed by professionals, but understanding how a website gets built and how many talented team members it takes to make it a reality.

 Students listen to Stephanie Speak at Adobe Creative Jam OSU

The project I walked the students though was Vallencourt Construction, which is one of my favorite sites we’ve done, as well as Baptist Hospitals and Misapplied Sciences.

 

The creative brief asked that they create an app that encourages users to seek transparency from their media.

 

The group group of 44 OSU students was a wonderful variety of ages and majors— mostly design, but I was thrilled to see some business students and even fashion majors in the mix.

 

These 11 groups of complete strangers had mere hours to construct their app in Adobe XD, and around 2pm, they took a break to enjoy some refreshments and listen to our keynote presentation.

 

After our presentations, the 11 groups of students had a few minutes each to present their apps— and considering they only had a few hours to concept, design, and build them, I was extremely impressed. The grand prize went to an app called “The Flip Side” that allowed you to view a news article from your preferred media provider, then flip the card to see what their competitor says about the same topic. A very cool idea!

 

Jim and I had a wonderful time speaking at this event. Being around students was an inspiring experience, especially considering I just passed my 10 year anniversary of graduating a few months ago.

 

Thank you to the amazing team at Adobe for inviting us to be a part of this great event, as well as the students and faculty we had so much fun meeting afterwards.

Adobe Creative Jam Keynote Speakers

Stephanie Ward Stephanie Ward

When S4's Creative Director isn't longing for the bygone days of boy bands, glitter, and questionable hairstyle choices that we call the 90s, she's helping us push our creative chops to the next level. She combines impeccable taste and artistic skill with a strong determination to make sure a design's target audience always understands the message perfectly.

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