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Alumni

Where are they now? Creative Industries students thrive after graduation

In a sea of articles and statistics lamenting the fruitless job hunt of the recent university graduate, the landscape can be intimidating and anxiety-inducing for those of us still in school. It may even turn the brightest of prospects off of pursuing a degree in the first place.

So, I am here to offer a glimmer of hope. The growth of a creative, knowledge-driven economy has offered valuable opportunities to recent graduates of Ryerson University’s B.A. in Creative Industries. I caught up with 3 of them to see where life has taken them after CRI, and how this versatile degree has helped prepare them.

Olivia Amu, alumni
Olivia Amu - Junior Project Manager, Secret Location

At Secret Location, a division of Entertainment One Media, Olivia Amu has already started climbing the ranks. She is a Junior Project Manager at this Emmy award-winning virtual reality studio for emerging platforms, working on VR games including Blasters of the Universe, The Great C and Transpose.

 

“There are a lot of soft skills that you pick up from CRI that you may not identify right away,” Olivia tells me. “I took 4 management courses, and it was enough for me to pick up project management really easily.”

When it came to locking down a job, Creative Industries was able to help Olivia make connections and learn about the growing VR industry, where other candidates lacked the knowledge and network. “I was repeatedly encouraged to reach out to people who worked in fields I was interested in, and also to make connections with people I otherwise would have been too nervous to approach.”

Olivia’s genuine passion for VR and gaming lead a major media company to hire her and take the time to train her for her current role 3 years later.

Fiona Kenney - alumni
Fiona Kenney - MDes Student, Harvard Graduate School of Design

Pursuing graduate school after CRI, Fiona earned a coveted spot at Harvard, completing a Master of Design in History and Philosophy of Design. Her research focuses on the relationship between personal identity and built environment, and the responsibility of planners and architects to consider these relationships.

Fiona says the customizable and interdisciplinary nature of CRI prepared her for the MDes at Harvard. “Through my CRI career, I learned to speak the languages of multiple disciplines - I do that everyday here, working with architects, landscape architects, urban planners, and academics.”

Fiona encourages students to embrace the vastness of potential pathways Creative Industries offers. “I started the program thinking I wanted to work in fashion… through experimenting with different courses and activities I was able to find what I actually love!”

Creative Industries Alumni Association

The  CIAA advances the School of Creative Industries and acts as a professional and social resource for its network of graduates worldwide.

Our Goals

Re/Connect
  • Maintain and enhance relationships between the School of Creative Industries and its alumni
  • Engage with current students and student associations affiliated with the School
Support
  • Promote the development of Creative Industries alumni through reunions, networking events, and other opportunities for intellectual and professional enrichment
  • Invest in current and future Creative Industries students by cultivating a base of philanthropic support
Advocate
  • Further the interests of alumni working within the creative industries
  • Champion the development of diversity, inclusion, and accessibility in the creative industries

Executive Team 2019- 2021

Melody McMullan ‘18, President

Daphne Chan ‘18, Vice-President

Ashley Ng ‘17, Vice-President

Natalia Holeksa ‘19, Secretary

Maeve Jewiss ‘18, Secretary

Alexis Rau ‘17, Treasurer

Claire Fisher ‘17, Director-at-Large

Saura Haggart-Smith ‘18, Director-at-Large

If you are interested in getting in contact with the CIAA, please email ruciaa@ryerson.ca or follow CIAA on Instagram, external link and Facebook, external link.

Dusty Lima, alumni
Dusty Lima - Coordinator, Live Entertainment & Event Marketing, Maple Leaf Sports and Entertainment

Dusty puts her skills to work at MLSE, Canada’s prominent leader in sports and entertainment experiences and parent company of the Toronto Maple Leafs and Toronto Raptors.

She praises Creative Industries’ career-focused lens in helping her prepare for current role. “Most classes in the Music Business Module were taught by seasoned industry professionals who designed practical assignments and projects closely modelled on work we now tackle on a day-to-day basis.”

Like Fiona, Dusty encourages exploration within Creative Industries. “Don’t pigeonhole yourself before you get started. Remain open to the possibility that your interests may change and that there are whole careers and industries you haven’t considered that may become your area of focus.”