Yesterday I journeyed to Concordia University, site of this interview and that interview, to review student projects. Not in the standard sense of looking-over-portfolios-and-making-people-cry, but in the sense of broader, more globally-conscious research initiatives. I felt a bit out of my league, that is, until the students actually started showing design work and soliciting for feedback. Then I would say my element was achieved.

As far as the students went, it was the usual sort of bunch. Some were poised, confident, informed; while others seemed bewildered, slightly confused, and possibly unsure of their current location. A few more were perfectly silent. This is normal. Some of these students had experience with public speaking and some didn’t, and I tried not to fault them on that. There was a time, long ago, where opening my mouth and speaking my opinion to a crowd was the Mt. Everest of my life.

For those students — even the ones who handled themselves well — I’d point out Nichelle Narcici’s Command-X final presentation from the AIGA Conference in Denver last year. This was a presentation of student work, done over 24 hours, that brought 2,500 professional designers to their feet, and some to tears. The closest thing I’ve found to a video of this presentation, which doesn’t even come close to capturing the moment, is found here at the 1:44 mark. If someone knows of a better or full video, let me know and I’ll update it.