Jessica Torrez-Riley G’12 shares professional insights with iMedia students
The Interactive Media graduate returned to campus to summarize her career path from Elon to Amazon, where she starts a new position next week.
Four days before she begins her new job on Amazon Video’s international engagement team, Jessica Torrez-Riley G’12 imparted words of wisdom on this year’s Interactive Media class.
Torrez-Riley, who delayed her beach vacation a day to return to her alma mater, discussed a variety of topics during her April 27 visit, ranging from salary negotiations to the rise of social media – as well as the quick decline of some platforms (cough, Vine, cough.)
During her informal class discussion, she often circled back to the value of her experience in the Interactive Media master's program. While she noted that technology changes frequently, and today’s skills can become obsolete over night, the real benefit of her Elon graduate degree was learning how to learn.
“You have the ability to pick things up as things change – and that’s the most important skill you’ll leave with,” she said.
During her own iMedia experience, Torrez-Riley discovered a deep interest in social media and user experience, and a surprising love for coding. After graduation, she moved to Los Angeles where she created award-winning social media content for seasons 3 and 4 of NBC's “The Voice.” It was the first television program to display tweets on air, she noted.
Following a return home to Seattle, Torrez-Riley then worked as an interactive producer, social media manager, and marketing program manager with clients such as Microsoft, The Gates Foundation, Major League Soccer, and Northeastern University-Seattle. And now, she prepares for her next role with Amazon Video.
With Commencement right around the corner, the iMedia students peppered Torrez-Riley with questions relating to job placement, salary adjustments and workplace challenges. Having been in their position just five years earlier, Torrez-Riley also explained how distinctive an iMedia degree is in today's job market.
“Remember that this program makes you stand out,” she said, noting that because the students see one another each day they might forget how unique their skillsets actually are. “Remember how special you are. And how diverse you are in this media field.”