"I'm really excited to be here tonight because I love what I do and I love sharing it," Kempka said at the start. She then sought to assure those students wondering if they can actually make a living as a journalist. "If you are a writer, and you can express an idea ... you will probably find work somewhere," she said. "That skill is in demand."
Kempka stressed that it's important to be good at shifting given that the latest in multimedia and digital publishing changes so rapidly. Don't get too attached to particular tactics or tools, she said, adding that the industry will always need people who can do these simple things: listen, look, show, tell, imagine and make.
From there, Kempka spent a lot of time talking about how she and colleagues at the Marquette Office of Marketing and Communication have worked to develop and redevelop the university's mobile applications. "It all starts with these drawings and getting feedback, feedback, feedback," she said while showing showing examples of the applications' first iterations. Hearing from others can be scary, but it's better to figure out mistakes early and not wait until too many resources have been assigned and expensive outside developers have been hired, she said.
My JOUR 1100 class heard the first part of Kempka's presentation; each student is to write a 400-word column or editorial about what they thought of it by this Wednesday. After a break, the graduate students and Kempka – she is pursuing a master's degree herself, actually – spent time discussing what makes a delightful or horrible interactive experience on the Web or a mobile device. Some delightful mobile app examples shared by the class included those by or featuring Flipboard, Walgreens, Under Armour, eBay, Clear, Alice in Wonderland, Martha Stewart and Dropbox.
"I have received amazing feedback from students – "best presentation ever!" Menck told Kempka in an email afterward. "You hit this one out of the ballpark." I wholeheartedly agree. So insightful. So inspiring.