Hi there! My name is Maddy, and I’m an aspiring web designer and developer. I’m currently a senior at James Madison University in the School of Media Arts & Design with a concentration in Converged Media. JMU's unique program prepared me for a a creative, fast-paced career as a media producer in a field that is constantly evolving. While my studies focused on interactive design I was also encouraged to explore other media fields such as journalism, print design, video production and advertising. On top of my major classes I'm also pursing a minor in Educational Media to enhance my skills in information design and media instruction.
In addition to a minor in Educational Media I've completed a minor in British Communication and Media. During spring semester 2016, I spent 3 months living abroad in the heart of London while taking 5 classes to complete my minor. Covering topics in intercultural communication, British media and society, pop culture and more. My time abroad encouraged hands-on study that took me out on London's streets to learn on a daily basis.
Upon returning from London, I interned full time with Insomniac Design in Washington D.C., for summer 2016. During my summer with the agency I worked directly under the creative director to develop wireframes, create graphics, and design web page mockups. I was also given the chance to work independently on front end development projects and Wordpress theming.
For me web design is all about storytelling. The way the client represents themselves in person and online is their brand and should tell their story to their audience. Every single client comes with a message they're trying to get across and by keeping the focus on storytelling it allows well thought out plans for the brand representation. Through carefully crafted design with a focus on everything from color schemes and imagery to user experience and interactivity I want to create an online storefront that will hook viewers with the aesthetics, and keep them scrolling because of the experience.
For almost four years I've volunteered at Cat's Cradle in downtown Harrisonburg donating time as a photographer and helping manage the website, databases, social media accounts, and customer relations, on phone and in-person. During my time with the organization I've also fostered over a dozen cats before they went up for adoption. This involved spending time socializing those who were feral and/or shy cats and caring for sick cats all while hosting them in my home. My love for the organization came from their no-kill policies, determination to assist local households with pet assistance, and their belief that all animals no matter their temperament could find a home.
I am a strong believer in breaking down the stigma surrounding mental health and encouraging acceptance for those struggling with mental illnesses. I became involved with my university's chapter of the To Write Love On Her Arms organization during my freshman year at James Madison. My senior year I was elected to the OutReach Coordinator position and became responsible for organizing community events that tackle the stigma surrounding mental health, leading education and fundraising efforts for mental health in the JMU community, connecting students to local resources, and assisting with the campaigns of the national nonprofit.
As a lover of storytelling it was no surprise when I found myself volunteering my time for 22807 Magazine my sophomore year. This Pacemaker winning publication focuses on the intertwining arts and culture of Harrisonburg and the JMU community through strong features stories, powerful photography, YouTube shows, weekly blogs and podcasts. While I began as a staff photographer I rose through the ranks to photo editor and eventually executive editor my senior year leading a staff of 12 students, establishing the editorial vision and supervising the direction of the print and online magazine.