Graduating College Technically Talented

p546356334-smIf you ask most college freshmen, they will assure you they are the most technically talented person in their family. After all, they are on their iPhones, tweeting or posting to Facebook 24/7 and extremely proficient in the latest computer games. Most have taken a few computer courses while still in High School. But can they:

  • Apply those technical talents in the business world?
  • Build and maintain a website, not just use a template?
  • Apply Social Media in a business forum?
  • Integrate a vast variety of software tools?
  • Choose hardware/software that saves time, money and frustration?

Students who come to UMHB and major/minor in MMIT can gain the skills listed above. Below are a few examples of graduates now working in Art, Christian Ministry, Education and even as a Lawyer who have benefited from the MMIT Program.

Art and those drawn to art discover technology (MMIT courses) can add to their creativity and provide a rewarding means of support.

Megan Fuxa (’13), Graphic Designer, Wilson Art, LLC & Senior Artist at Painting with a Twist, found that exercising her analytic side with MMIT courses proved beneficial: “My computer and technical skills have made me very confident in my abilities and I am already far exceeding my job requirements and receiving amazing feedback.” [more]

Chris Ayer (’13), Freelance Animator and Game Designer: “I learned how to bring new life to my works through technology, and make them a more immersive experience that can be fun and interactive.” [more]

Christian Studies/Mission work often calls many after graduation. Take the following UMHB CGD/MMIT grads:

Chris Webster (’05), Assistant Pastor, Grace Bible Church – “If we want to know and reach and lead people in an increasingly isolated and fast-paced world, we need to meet them where they live and become fluent in their ways of communicating.“ [more]

Jacob Brenton (’14), Campus Missionary Intern, South Plains BSM – “With so much junk online, we need Christians who will create and innovate media that is wholesome and ultimately, points to Christ.” [more]

Education is another field others find themselves pulled to after graduation:

Cheryl Blake (’09), PreK-6th Grade Educator – “The ability to build or update an existing class web page is a wonderful way to keep parents informed.“ [more]

Law is not a typical field for someone graduating with a degree in CGD:

Andrew Wolfe (’06), continued his education and is now the Assistant County & District Attorney, Falls County District – “A ‘toolbox’ of technical skills is one of the most highly valuable intangible assets that one can acquire.” His technical skills have even helped him prove and win a high profile case. [more]

The CGD program has evolved over the last twenty years into the Multimedia & Information Technology (MMIT) major and minor. The typical MMIT graduate from the McLane College of Business finds lucrative employment in a variety of positions such as web & multimedia designer/developers, business analysts, technical & creative producers/directors at TV stations throughout Texas, and even as artists, teachers, pastors and lawyers!


Student Bios

Megan Fuxa

Graphic Designer, Wilson Art, LLC & Senior Artist at Painting with a Twist, Temple, TX – UMHB ’13, BFA in Visual Communications [which included BCIS technology courses from the MMIT Program]

My time at UMHB provided me with the educational foundation which led me into a great position at a major corporation because they had the same belief systems as UMHB. My computer and technical skills have made me very confident in my abilities and I am already far exceeding my job requirements and receiving amazing feedback. Is it enough to say they don’t want me going anywhere for a good while? In the short period of time since graduating from UMHB, I have already passed the junior graphic designer position and moved up to full graphic designer. I am able to support my family with ease and give to them a beautiful new home! [back to post]

Chris Ayer

Freelance Animator and Game Designer – UMHB ’13, B.A. CGD wArt minor

My computer studies at UMHB gave me an increased versatility in my skills. I’ve always had a passion for creating animations and video games. And as much as I took pride in myself as a visual artist, there was still much I wanted to learn about the programming aspect of these mediums. During my studies, I learned how to bring new life to my works through technology, and make them a more immersive experience that can be fun and interactive. I can now apply these skills towards my continued studies in animation and game design. Not to mention it helped me discover my abilities in web design. [back to post]

Chris Webster

Asst Pastor, Grace Bible Church, Killeen, TX – UMHB ’05, B.A. CGD wArt & Music minors

More and more, technology is becoming the proverbial water we swim in: it’s the places we hang out, the paths we travel, the tools we use, and the language we speak. If we want to know and reach and lead people in an increasingly isolated and fast-paced world, we need to meet them where they live and become fluent in their ways of communicating. While other forms of media haven’t gone away, I think the Church is necessarily realizing the huge role that technology plays in the lives of modern people. Digital forms of communication, information storage, and project management can be some of the most efficient, affordable, and accessible ways of casting vision, identifying people and resources, and even strengthening relationships for the Gospel. We need to not only be familiar with these tools, but learn when and how to leverage their strengths. [back to post]

Jacob Brenton

Campus Missionary Intern at the South Plains BSM, Levelland, TX – UMHB ’14, B.S. CGD wArt & Christian Studies minors

The Internet is the largest mission field yet: providing us with the opportunity to share the Gospel with the vast majority of the world. With so much junk online, we need Christians who will create and innovate media that is wholesome and ultimately, points to Christ. [back to post]

Cheryl Blake

UMHB ’09, B.S. CGD wArt minor, followed by Education Certification preK thru 6th Grade

In education, technology is very important. When writing lesson plans, teachers must now include how technology will be incorporated in the lesson. While teachers must be able to use basic word processing programs, the ability to use spreadsheets and databases is extremely helpful. Besides being able to put together PowerPoint presentations there are many other online options such as Prezzies. There are many online, free programs that will help students, but the teacher must understand them in order to implement them. A solid technological background allows a teacher the ability to assist the student with any problems they may encounter while using school computers. The ability to build or update an existing class web page is a wonderful way to keep parents informed. I have made brochures and class newsletters. My graphics skills have made these tasks easy and more interesting for the readers. Our children are growing up with technology. I believe that knowledge is what helps make our military and our country as a whole a world leader. As educators, we must provide a well-rounded education and that includes technology. My technology background has definitely given me an ‘edge ‘ in the education job market. [back to post]

Andrew M. Wolfe

Assistant County & District Attorney, Falls County District Attorney’s Office – UMHB ’06, B.S. CGD wArt minor followed by law degree at St. Mary’s University School of Law

A “toolbox” of technical skills is one of the most highly valuable intangible assets that one can acquire. Many professionals are seeing an evolving climate in their respective fields; the law is no different. Emerging technology and new legislative mandates are creating a new arena in which the practice of law takes place. Now, lawyers must be able to navigate various software interfaces to perform work in the office, and learn how to use new equipment and devices to excel in the courtroom. As a CGD major at UMHB, I became well versed in numerous basic and advanced hardware components and software programs, and because of that, I have benefited greatly. As an assistant district attorney, these computer skills have been helpful in more ways than one could imagine. For example, our county does not have an “IT guy.” Therefore, when someone in our office has a computer issue, it could take an entire business day before someone can come by and look at the problem. Since I have been thoroughly trained by my undergrad curriculum, I can often times fix issues without the need for calling in an independent contractor, which could set the county back significantly. By decreasing costs and increasing efficiency, my “toolbox” could provide a value-added benefit to my employer that may not have been realized. My technical skills were put to the test in a recent high-profile court case. In the days leading up to trial, my boss asked me if I could comb through the phone records of the defendant, the victim, and a third party. To my surprise the phone records, when exported into a spreadsheet, were over 35,000 rows of data. Luckily, I knew how to clean up and sort the spreadsheet, and was able to show a pattern of communication that corroborated some of our other evidence and disproved one of the claims made by the defense. Also, in the same trial, we were struggling to find a way to display hundreds of photos showing the victim’s injuries to the jury. Ultimately, we decided to create an interactive diagram of the human body, so that when the prosecutor questioned the expert forensic scientist about each individual injury, our investigator could click on the correlating part of the body and the jury could view the actual autopsy photos taken by the forensic scientist. Without this technology, the jury would have been overwhelmed with hundreds of pages of phone records and hundreds of individual photographs. [Back to post]

Donna Teel

Ms. Donna Teel, after retiring from the U.S. Army, came to UMHB where she completed her B.S. and then M.S.I.S. As the Computer Graphics Design (CGD)/Multimedia & Information Technology (MMIT) Program Director, Ms. Teel has helped guide and expand the CGD program which was recently re-designated MMIT.

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About Donna Teel

Ms. Donna Teel, after retiring from the U.S. Army, came to UMHB where she completed her B.S. and then M.S.I.S. As the Computer Graphics Design (CGD)/Multimedia & Information Technology (MMIT) Program Director, Ms. Teel has helped guide and expand the CGD program which was recently re-designated MMIT.