North Island College’s Interactive Media Grad Show takes place Friday, April 26 at the Shadbolt Studios. Stock image illustration

North Island College showcases web programming and design talent

North Island College’s Interactive Media Grad Show will feature the best work of Vancouver Island’s up-and-coming designers and developers, including a combination of solo and collaborative projects.

The event runs Friday, April 26, 5–9 p.m. in the Comox Valley campus’s Shadbolt Studios and will showcase apps, games, graphic designs, websites and branding concepts from 13 interactive media graduates. The event is open to the public and admission is free.

“It’s exciting to reveal what students have been working on throughout the year,” said Megan Wilson, interactive media instructor. “By the time they graduate, students are ready to work in the creative industry and many already have clients or job opportunities.”

Students divided into three teams to each produce a new website for the showcase event. The project was a chance for students to work together and develop project management, problem-solving and presentation skills, in combination with up-to-date web standards and best practices. A panel of judges selected the strongest overall entry to serve as the official website for the event.

Student Alyssa Willis was the project manager for the team behind the winning website. She is set to graduate with her communication design diploma in April and has already accepted a job with an Island-based web design firm. She said she most enjoyed the Computer Graphics I and II courses, as well as the chance to collaborate with classmates.

“I think the fact that we do everything from ideation to actually implementing a vision is great,” she said. “You’re doing a bit of everything in this program and gaining the skills you need.”

Willis started coding and building websites with her friends in Grade 7 and said the communication design diploma was the perfect fit for what she was looking for.

“I just knew I had to do it,” she said. “Between the computer-based stuff and the arts, it was a beautiful mix of what I wanted.”

Prior to the showcase, students will present their work and network with NIC’s advisory committee — a group of industry experts and alumni that guides curriculum development for NIC’s interactive media programs.

Tom Keenoy, design director and founder of Courtenay-based design and development studio Medium Rare Interactive, has hired several NIC grads.

“NIC’s interactive media grads are capable of high-quality work,” he said. “They have the skill set and they’re in sync with current industry practices, which is a huge advantage from a hiring perspective.”

For more information about NIC’s interactive media programs and to see the winning website, visit www.nic.bc.ca/interactive-media.

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