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McClure Day brings alumni back to campus to share their industry knowledge with students

Students in the J. Warren McClure School of Emerging Communication Technologies at the Scripps College of Communication got the chance to learn about possible career paths and the state of the technology industry from those who came before them during McClure School Day 2024The event occurred on March 21, 2024, and included two parallel sessions, one on Information and Telecommunications Systems (ITS) and one on Virtual Reality (VR) and Game Development. Ohio University alumni came back to campus to speak as part of both sessions.


“Students asked me for career advice a lot, and I usually don’t have time to give a complete answer,” said Kellye Blosser (B.F.A. ’07, M.F.A. ’20), a game designer at Ubisoft in San Francisco. “Today I felt like I could take the time to explain the things I wish someone had explained to me 20 years ago. I want to see people succeed, especially people from places like Ohio where we don’t always get exposure to creative and tech jobs. I found something that worked for me, and I want to share that discovery.”

Blosser’s employer, Ubisoft, is a creator of a diverse portfolio of games, featuring brands such as Assassin’s Creed®, Brawlhalla®, For Honor®, Far Cry®, Tom Clancy’s Ghost Recon®, Just Dance®, Rabbids®, Tom Clancy’s Rainbow Six®, The Crew® and Tom Clancy’s The Division®. Her McClure Day talk was titled “Landing a Game Design Job.” Blosser currently works on a game called XDefiant, a first-person arena shooter game where you compete to be the best in fast-paced online matches.

“I spoke to students about my own journey from graduation into the game industry,” said Blosser. “I included the lessons I learned along the way, a mix of philosophy and practical tips, that helped me land somewhere I wanted to be. The reaction was great. The students were very engaged and asked really smart questions. I hope I was able to help them do better in their job search than I did when I was younger.”

On the ITS side of McClure Day, Riley Engle (B.S.C. ’17, M.S. 18), a senior Network Engineer at Rivian in Normal, Illinois, gave a presentation called "Industrial Internet of Things (IoT), Wireless and Edge Computing: The Challenges of Embracing IT Modernization in Manufacturing."

At Rivian, Engle manages an industrial communications network with over 10,000 nodes in a very large electric vehicle manufacturing plant. In the past, he was an IT Specialist with RoviSys in Aurora, Ohio where he provided data networking expertise for manufacturing plants in a variety of industries. 

Engle spoke to students about the manufacturing industry challenges in regards to the Internet or a network of Things. IoT describes the network of physical objects that are embedded with sensors, software, and other technologies for the purpose of connecting and exchanging data with other devices and systems over the internet.


“IoT can help cost and device size, as well as accessibility and wireless technologies. All of those things are needed in the manufacturing realm. Those simple aspects that we need to do will allow manufacturing to do complex things. I also talked about common issues and trends that are happening in that sector and what does that mean for students in ITS today. I let them know how they can help out and what skills should they focus on,” said Engle. “The manufacturing sector is underserved in terms of knowledgeable networking engineers, but it is greatly needed.”

Engle said he was impressed by the students and the questions they asked.

“I had a lot of students ask me great questions,” said Engle. “It was a really enjoyable experience overall.”

Engle and Blosser were part of a group of 14 different speakers during the event. Other notable speakers included: Kirk Herath, Cybersecurity Strategic Advisor to the Ohio Governor Mike DeWine, Holly Drake, Chief Information Security Officer for the State of Ohio, and Alec Lisy, Team Manager of Software Development, Kinetic Vision. Approximately 150 students, faculty and administrators attended the event.

Outstanding undergraduate awards were also given out to Colin Bartlett, a senior information and telecommunication systems major, Journey Kissell, a senior virtual reality and game development major, and Jared Cominsky, a senior information and telecommunication systems major, while the Outstanding Graduate Student Award was given to Ricky Tordzro, who is studying information and telecommunications systems.

“McClure School Day is a singular event that allows students, alums, faculty, and industry luminaries to meet and learn from each other,” said McClure School Director Charles Linscott. “A lot of people work very hard to make McClure School Day happen, and we’re quite proud of how things turned out. It’s always a lot of fun. I can’t wait for next year!”

April 1, 2024
Cheri Russo