First DigiX event finds success, gains traction for future

Students at Western Carolina University tend to forget the technology that surrounds them, especially in an area like Cullowhee.  What new products have spurred out of an innovative idea?  To answer that question, digital support specialist Jason Melvin with Coulter Faculty Commons brought the technology landscape to the university with the first annual DigiX.

The digital and media arts event hosted on Thursday, April 11, by WCU’s Coulter Faculty Commons and supported by the Division of Information featured information booths, panel discussions, technology demonstrations, and more.  DigiX allowed participants to eXchange (gain knowledge and enthusiasm), eXhibit (allowing students to display their accomplishments) and eXplore (visit information displays from off campus organizations).

The eXhibit portion of the event involved a student competition that invited WCU students to submit a digital arts project (film, animation or graphic design, music, etc.) to be displayed.  Senior graphic design student Dakota Ling, who showcased a video animation for the competition, saw the event as a way to connect beyond the classroom.

“It let’s everyone doing this sort of thing connect with each other,” Ling said.  “A lot of these majors are insular and it’s difficult to communicate what you are doing outside the classroom.  DigiX is a great way to show people some of the cool things you can learn.”

David Pennal, owner of Pencare Interiors, shows WCU student Dakota Ling about his product. Photo by Jake Myers

DigiX turned into an all day event from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.  Vendors got the attention of students, faculty, and community members who came to see what the event was about.  Pencare Interiors brought in a desk that contains space to hold a desktop or laptop computer inside of it for college classrooms and high school computer labs, while Dell gave those in attendance a taste of Windows 8 with the all-new interactive Ultrabook.

The event was small, but it wasn’t low-key.  Jason Melvin, who was the lead planner for the event, looks to expand DigiX moving forward.

“Our original vision for this was much smaller.  We would love to make this event bigger,” Melvin said.  “I feel like we can really show off what we’re doing on campus with the students and get more vendors in.  We have had a great response.”