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Alumnus Jonathan Milian Returns To Mentor Graphic Design Students

Alumnus and Lead Designer/Art Director Returns To Mentor Graphic Design Students

Jonathan Milian returned to his alma mater this quarter to serve on an industry panel and offer feedback on scripted show ideas. The panel reviewed final project presentations from fourth year Graphic Design students in an Activated Marketing class taught by industry veteran Jorg Wallrabe. Jonathan graduated in 2015 with his degree in Graphic Design and is now the Lead Designer/Art Director of the graphics team at BrandingIron Worldwide (founded by Jorg Wallrabe). We caught up with Jonathan to find out more.

Tell us what it's like to come back to your alma mater and give feedback to students on their final projects: It is such an honor and privilege to be able to come back and help the new generation of designers. Using this platform to guide and give feedback to students has been a true joy and I like to think they get something out of it as well. I have been invited to participate in both portfolio reviews and final project presentations and the new talent coming out of the Graphic Design program is second to none.  

And what did you think of their work? The final projects coming out of these new programs is amazing and seeing all of the hard work and dedication the students put into them is truly inspiring.  

Tell us about your path to BrandingIron Worldwide (BIW): Upon completing my final quarter of FIDM’s Graphic Design Program in 2015, I met with Career Advisor Nonie Hillier to discuss my interest in working for a design agency. Nonie recommended applying for an internship to gain insider experience. BIW has a wonderful relationship with FIDM as many of the designers are FIDM Graphic Design alumni. This was a perfect match from the start and after completing my internship I was asked to join the team. As the saying goes, the rest is history.    
What is the value of learning from instructors who are working professionals in their field, like we have at FIDM? Learning from instructors who are working professionals helps to give better insight as to what is currently going on within a particular field. They are industry experts that give realistic and dynamic advice to help students be better prepared for life after graduation.  
How do you feel FIDM prepared you for what you are doing now? Upon finishing the two year program I felt that I was given the tools needed to start on a path to pursue my goals as both an artist and working professional. FIDM definitely gives students the tools and it is just up to you to decide what you want to do and how far you want to go.  

What is your biggest goal right now? My current goals as both a Designer and Art Director is to always stay ahead of the curve and be the best mentor and support system for our team. Even as a student I always enjoyed working with a team and it might sound cheesy but teamwork makes the dream work.     
Anything else you’d like to share? If I can give any advice to new designers it is to take an internship—always stay hungry for knowledge and learn from others.

Categories:  Graphic Design Alumni Industry Partnerships