The IMC program was perfect for Arthur to reignite his career. Which program is right for you?
Why did you pick the WVU IMC program?
It was the convenience of being online but also the great reputation. It was the #1 program of its kind, being online and IMC. I definitely wanted the convenience of online because as an older student, a father and a husband, attending traditional classes was going to be a challenge, but I also wanted to go to a major university that was going to be respected in the real world.
How did the program change your career?
I was informed recently that my unit at Coca-Cola would be in transition. What it is doing for me now is that it’s making me more marketable where I am getting reactions in the marketplace as far as people responding to my resume and when I am talking with potential employers, I have something more current to hang my hat on. I received my bachelor’s degree in 1989, so now that I have a master’s degree that is more current, it shows that I have a fresh skill set to apply in my career.
Was there a certain skill you learned about during the program that has been most applicable to your career?
Analytics. If you are going to be doing any kind of digital media or even marketing in general, this is probably the course that “pays the bills.” Generally, any organization that you are going to work for is going to want some kind of feedback or measurement so that they can tell what’s working and what’s not. All marketing companies that I know are going to interact with a website, so the analytics are going to allow for you to have that skillset to do the mathematics and measurement so you can tell an employer what works and what not.
In other classes, it’s more opinion-based. Like artwork, everyone can comment on something and be right because of the way they see it. Analytics is more black and white. The numbers are going to tell you exactly where you are and where the company is. While the class was challenging, it allows you to have a skillset that’s in demand in the real world.
What would you tell someone who is considering a program like IMC, but is unsure about doing an online program?
It depends on where you are in your lifestyle. With today’s technology and the way the courses are designed, the online component gives you the convenience to go ahead and tackle the classes when it is convenient for you. I will say this though. You have to be a self-starter and you cannot be a procrastinator. The program is rigorous and designed to give you a real world skillset. By the same token, it is also designed to test your work ethic and make sure that you are worthy of being able to call yourself an IMC graduate. So, if that person is not a self-starter and is not able to attack the work on a consistent basis, then the online program might not be for them. But, if they are a self-starter and they can figure things out and interact with their classmates, then they will do well in the program.
Is there anything else you would like to add about your time in the program?
The IMC program is one of those unique opportunities for someone to advance their learning in a program that is both cutting edge and affordable, and that is a unique combination. First of all, it is from a nationally, if not internationally recognized university. Second of all, the program itself is recognized as one best of its kind in the country. Finally, it offers convenience of being online and offering the ability to go at your own pace. So, one of the things about the program that sets it apart is that it is recognized and respected by employers who, number one, know the school, but also know that you are coming with a skillset that they can utilize right away, which allows them to embrace graduates and at least start the conversation that hopefully leads to a career opportunity.