After graduation this December, the second Studio 20 class has wasted no time getting themselves in with some of the top media companies around. From ProPublica to the New York Times, you may see Studio 20 alums popping up all over the news world. Check out where some of last year’s class have landed and what lessons they’ve taken with them to their new jobs:
Blair Hickman | Social Media Producer at ProPublica
What does a Social Media Producer do? Right now, my primary responsibility is to run the Facebook/Twitter/Google+ accounts and research best practices. But ProPublica is so open that any idea goes. I’m able to pitch, write and create content that ranges from written stories to video to graphics.
What’s the best part of the job? The people at this office are really open to ideas. That was the top priority for me in whatever job I ended up taking after Studio20.
What skills that you picked up from Studio20 have come in handy so far? Best practices research, assembling guides, thinking outside the box, and video editing skills.
Chelsea Stark | Multimedia Producer at Mashable
What are your responsibilities at work? I do a LOT. I create graphics, slideshows (which Mashable calls “galleries”), manage photo and video assets, and shoot and edit video. I really do anything that can fit into the multimedia gap. I’m also going to begin helping Mashable redesign their gallery tool so it will be more attractive and easier to use.
What’s the best part of the job? I get to get my hands into a lot of different projects, so the work is never routine. It’s also such a great environment to work in. It’s a very young company and very focused on trying new things.
What skills that you picked up from Studio20 have come in handy so far? A lot of the multimedia skills I picked up during Studio 20 have helped me. I’m also doing a lot of explainer-type galleries, which relates to our class’s second semester project with ProPublica. Also, understanding project management and wireframes will help me here—thanks to Zoe!
Nasry Esmat | Senior News Editor, Yahoo Middle East
What are do you do as Senior News Editor?I am the head of the news property in Yahoo Maktoob, the Arabic edition of Yahoo.com. I lead a team of editors to write, edit, blog, publish, and curate news that interest our audience, Arabic language speakers all over the world.
What’s the best part of the job? The best part of the job is that I am using lot of skills and knowledge I got during my Studio 20 days in my daily work. This job helps me develop more and more as a an individual, and it keeps me hungry for more knowledge in the digital journalism field.
What skills that you picked up from Studio20 have come in handy so far? Project management and leadership, social media, multimedia, Web analytics, SEO
Brittany Binowski | Audience Development Associate at Forbes Media
What are your responsibilities at Forbes?I do a lot. of different things. The job is a mix of marketing, consulting and strategy for the entire company. A big part of it is keeping an eye on the website’s numbers—the page views, unique visitors, top stories, etc.—and then seeing how we can use that data to create better, more engaging content.
What’s the best part of the job? Coming up with new ideas to improve the magazine, the website, and the numbers. I enjoy working with a lot of really smart, nice and innovative people and having my ideas and thoughts about the future of journalism taken seriously.
What skills that you picked up from Studio20 have come in handy so far? Studio 20 definitely taught me how to think in new and innovative ways, how to come up with ideas and “pitch” ideas to companies that maybe no one else has thought of before. The program also taught me to think strategically about journalism and come up with ideas and strategies that are really practical, useful and effective, that create more value for the news, the organization and the users, and can be put in place in the real world.
Matt Diaz | User Experience and Product Research Analyst at The New York Times
What do you do? I work on a small team that conducts something called “user research” in order to help make our digital product offerings better. We work across NYTimes.com as well as our various device-specific apps. Our job is to collaborate with internal design, development, newsroom, product, and marketing teams to figure out what users want and need and how better to create innovative products, services, and experiences for them. We do all sorts of research from sitting down and talking to your users one-to-one and watching them use our products, to launching surveys, running diary studies, and conducting both moderated and unmoderated user experience testing.
What’s the best part of the job? Far and away the best part of the job for me is being around so many smart and engaged people. The Times is facing unprecedented challenges but it’s clear across the organization that there’s tremendous opportunity ahead in serving our users.
What skills that you picked up from Studio20 have come in handy so far? The program’s focus on not just doing great work, but being able to express your ideas clearly about that work has been invaluable.
All photos courtesy of Nasry Esmat.