July 19, 2018

Never Stop Learning No Matter Your Age

Deanna Paik | GreenFig Student
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Deanna Paik | GreenFig Student

Our Student Stories blog series highlights the experiences of GreenFig students currently enrolled in our Digital Marketing Science course. Here, we will introduce you to several students, find out what drove them to GreenFig, what skills they are developing right now, and what they aim to achieve with their microdegree from GreenFig.

“Never stop learning, no matter what your age”

Deanna Paik could have been content to ride out the status quo. After all, the entrepreneur already owns a successful business and possesses a mile-long resume featuring business management roles in numerous sectors. She knows international shipping, how to buy patents overseas, and the ins and outs of owning a successful art gallery.

But resting on her laurels doe not jive with Deanna’s never-stop-learning mentality. While the first half of her career is in the rear-view mirror, she strongly believed that in order to continue to thrive in the second half, her skills needed to evolve.

When Deanna heard about the opportunity to grow her digital marketing skills as a student in our fall Digital Marketing Science course, she jumped at the chance.

“I always challenge myself,” she says. “Even though I am older than most of the other students, I always want to be relevant.“ Specifically, Deanna says she needed to update her technology and strategy skills. Marketing analytics and persona mapping were at the top of her list when starting the course.

Deanna notes that GreenFig’s instructors — who are all seasoned, and working, marketing experts — brought realism and energy to the classroom in a way that was empowering to her.

“I am most surprised by how energized I am,” she says. “You go into some courses and it is interesting. But it does not inspire you to get up in the morning and say ‘what else can I learn today’?”

Following 16 weeks of classroom instruction, GreenFig students have transitioned to the Apprentorship Module (a mentor-guided apprenticeship with real-world companies). Leveraging their new skills, small groups of students collaborate with a real-world company and execute an active, real-world marketing campaign.“You can sit and learn new skills,” says Deanna, “but to experience it, is another thing. I have got to put my hands on it and use it.”

For Deanna, “micro education” is all about evolving and thriving. Already equipped with tremendous skills and experience, Deanna did not want or need a career U-turn. Rather, her aim is to strengthen and adapt her skills to a changing digital workforce. A highly focused, super-charged course that builds job-ready skills and experience in a condensed period of time was the perfect solution.

“I want to see my professional future keep going for the next 20 or 30 years, and a micro degree from GreenFig allows me to do that,” Deanna says. “To continue to thrive in today’s workplace, this is where people like me need to be.”

“When I look back, I have changed my career every 7 to 8 years,” she adds. ‘I have gone from the cosmetic industry to buying patents in Europe, working for a law firm, then going into the sporting goods industry, then opening up my own art gallery.”

“I always want to be challenging myself. You never stop learning, no matter what your age is.”

Learn more about GreenFig’s Digital Marketing Science course here.

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Thursday, July 19, 2018

Bridging The Skills Gap For Veterans

Our Student Stories blog series highlights the experiences of GreenFig students currently enrolled in our Digital Marketing Science course. Here, we'll introduce you to several current students, find out what drove them to GreenFig, what skills they're developing right now, and what they aim to achieve with their microdegree from GreenFig. Bridging the skills gap for veterans As Renée Hamilton-McNealy began preparing for a career change after nearly two decades in and out of active military service, she knew she didn’t need another college degree. After all, she already holds a bachelor’s in financial services and an MBA in finance, not to mention loads of management and leadership experience as a Master Sergeant in the Army Reserve. Rather, she was looking for a targeted, focused program that could help her develop the up-to-date technology skills she needed to land a marketing position now, but was discouraged by other programs she researched. “I was looking for more specialized education than what a general degree could offer,” explains Renée. “I wanted to prepare myself for life after I completely retire from the military, and to feed my passion for marketing.” Renée discovered GreenFig through The Paradigm Switch, a nonprofit that helps link military veterans and their spouses to prestigious skill-based training programs. “I’m not afraid to start over,” she says. “I wanted to challenge myself.” Renée explains that she wanted to gain skills in marketing analytics, and become proficient with tools that measure the impact of a campaign’s effectiveness. Renée enrolled in GreenFig’s Digital Marketing Science course remotely from the Bay Area, and says that the program offered a healthy, collaborative learning environment where she felt supported. “I learn best in my own environment and in my own space,” she says. “I liked not having to physically commute someplace. With GreenFig, the communications options are endless, and there were always ways to connect inside and out of the classroom.” Looking back, Renée says it was her instructors’ enthusiasm and ability to teach their craft that confirmed she had found the right program. “I just love the fact that the instructors, who are accomplished and experienced, were just as passionate to share their knowledge with us as we were to learn it,” she says. “And they had more than just experience, they also know how to teach. Just because you are a subject matter expert, doesn’t mean that you know how to transfer that knowledge so that someone else can comprehend it.” Renée believes GreenFig’s training courses are ideal for veterans, who are accustomed to targeted, hyper-focused skill development and who thrive in hands-on, real-world environments where those skills can be quickly applied. Applying the digital marketing skills she’s developed over the past 16 weeks to a real-world marketing campaign for a real-world company is an ideal application exercise for veterans like her, says Renée. “In graduate school, I did case studies,” she recalls. “What we’re doing now is benefitting a real company.” Armed with a unique set of skills -- digital marketing, finance and management -- upon graduation, Renée is hoping to join a marketing team where she can specialize in marketing analytics and social media management. “What GreenFig offers is what I needed,” she says. “To challenge me, allow me to get certifications, provide relevant and modern information, and give me the opportunity to immediately apply and exercise this knowledge in the marketplace.” Advance your skills and set your next big challenge at GreenFig. Check us out at www.greenfig.net.

Thursday, July 19, 2018

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