Name: Bryan M. Waddell
Current Job Title: Executive Director - Creative Technology
Name of Organization: gtc.Artists With Machines
Undergraduate Degree: Bachelor of Fine Arts, Print Media, Kent State University
Graduate Degrees: Master of Arts, Emergent Digital Practices, University of Denver
What does your current position entail?
As the Creative Technologies Director, I direct all aspects of digital manufacturing and fabrication of gtc.Artists With Machines' two dimensional and three dimensional product lines, from production planning and raw material sourcing through the completion of installation on client sites. My functional areas of responsibility include Procurement, Inventory Control, Production Scheduling, Manufacturing through Digital Prepress, Digital Print, Vinyl, Laser, Silkscreen and Finishing, Fabrication through CNC and EDM, QA/QC and New Client Development.
How did you get your current position?
I worked for gtc for 4 years before relocating to Denver to join the EDP program. Shortly before graduation I made plans to head east to interview at companies in Cleveland, Columbus, Pittsburg and Chicago. When gtc heard of my plans they asked that I stop by for a conversation about my plans and what I had gained during my time at DU. While I received competitive offers from other companies during that time, gtc had made it clear to me exactly the type of value and growth potential I would bring to the operation.
In relation to graduation, when did you start the job search and when did you secure your position?
I stated my job search halfway through the final quarter of my first year. I began compiling lists of the types of companies I could see myself working for and gathering/making contacts to find the right people to get my resume to. The process all in all took about 6 -7 months before I began to line up interviews and meet-ups closer to graduation.
In regards to the job search process, what recommendations do you have for current students?
The biggest recommendation I can make to current students (both graduates and undergraduates) is to be mindful of how you present yourself to companies each time you apply. Many organizations are hyper-specialized in their methods or approaches in what they deal in. Using just one generic resume and cover sheet won't get you noticed. Take the time on the front end to craft your resume and materials about you and skill appropriately. The extra time spent can pay huge dividends through the job search process.
Which aspects of your background have been most helpful in your current position?
In terms of what I learned during my time in the EDP program, I would have to say the ability to look for and towards the future. I realize that's a broad statement but it's really what the program offers. I learned the avenues for understanding where advancements in technology, media and art are occurring and how to be critical of their potential impact and uses beyond tomorrow. Companies need people like that more and more. People who have the ability to be real forward thinkers who can speculate the uses and applications for items that are unthought-of. It allows an organization to grow towards a sustainable future path. The program made me a better thinker, maker and doer.