DNC Insights 20 seconds at a time

The following article was featured by Queens University of Charlotte on Sept. 5, 2012:

In precisely 40 minutes and 120 slides, five Queens’ faculty members and an alumnus regaled students with six presentations tied to the Democratic National Convention. The topics ranged from the history of political protests to the increasing role of influence that graphic designers play in politics.

The presenters used a unique methodology known as Pecha Kucha, Japanese for chit-chat, in which 20 slides are shown for 20 seconds each, resulting in six minutes and 40 seconds total per speaker. Because the slides were pre-timed, the presenters had to carefully craft their respective remarks to maintain the concise, fast-paced nature of the presentation format.

Mike Wirth, assistant professor of new media design, presented shifts in branding political candidates; Dr. Erin DeBell, Spanish instructor, spoke on the numbers of Hispanic voters; Dr. John McArthur, assistant professor of communication, discussed convention space planning; Queens alumnus Jim Shoff talked about third places; Dr. Jessica Braswell, assistant professor of environmental science, spoke about the convention’s effect on the environment; and, Dr. Jennifer Bratyanski, history lecturer, provided a look at the history of protest at political conventions.

During the presentations, students gleaned specific knowledge related to the DNC in Charlotte, from how to participate in historic events scheduled in the center of the city to the environmental impact visitors will bring during their stay.

The Pecha Kucha presentations were part of a two-day course offered by The Knight School of Communication titled COMM 360: Charlotte & the Convention. More than 100 students enrolled in the innovative class, designed for students to focus on Charlotte and take advantage of our week in the national spotlight as a valuable internship.

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