Live Oak Communications attends THRIVE 2020 conference

Members of the student-run strategic communications agency traveled to Durham in February to hear from professionals presenting at AIGA Raleigh’s two-day creative conference.

Several members from Live Oak Communications attended AIGA Raleigh’s two-day creative conference, THRIVE 2020, that included workshops and lectures from creative professionals from across the graphic design and strategic communications industries.

Several School of Communications students attended THRIVE 2020, billed as a “two-day supercharged creative conference” in Durham. Photos courtesy of Steph Brendel

The Durham conference kicked off with workshop sessions where Live Oak Creative Director Catherine Nester and others attended the “Learn Hand Lettering” workshop with Mary Kate McDevitt, a well-known illustrator and lettering artist.

“Hand-lettering is one of my creative passions and it was a dream come true to learn from an artist that I admire so much,” Nester said.

According to the students in attendance, the conference left them inspired and armed with insights from successful professionals right in their backyard. Several students documented their experience via LinkedIn with the hashtag #ElonatTHRIVE.

“I had such an amazing time at AIGA Raleigh’s THRIVE 2020 Conference,” wrote Steph Brendel, Live Oak’s assistant creative director. “At the conference, I got to participate in insightful workshops and hear from some incredible names in the design world. Thank you Elon University School of Communications and Live Oak Communications for continuing to provide such engaging and professional opportunities.”

Christine Frena (from left), Steph Brendel, Sara Murphy and Catherine Nester captured a photo while attending THRIVE 2020.

During the conference’s main day, Feb. 29, the Live Oak team heard from seven different designers highlighting a variety of skills and backgrounds.

“Each speaker gave so much insight into their stories and areas of expertise,” Nester said. “We learned about problem-solving, inclusivity, prototyping, ideation, illustration and so much more. I learned how to make myself valuable, find my niche, and pursue a career in the creative world.”

Live Oak members in attendance included Nester, Brendel, Dan Severance, Anna Shine, Sara Murphy and Christine Frena. The students were accompanied by Shannon Zenner, assistant professor of communication design.

About Live Oak Communications

Live Oak Communications is Elon University’s student-run strategic communications agency, providing students unique experiences partnering with numerous businesses, nonprofits and organizations to achieve their business goals through targeted, multiplatform strategies and tactics. Live Oak’s capabilities include public relations, advertising, video, web design, social media solutions, graphic design, corporate identity, analytics and more.

Hal Vincent, a lecturer in strategic communications, serves as the faculty director of Live Oak Communications.