Behind the excitement and thrills of Georgia Southern Athletics lies something many take for granted.
The images, videos and countless other media fans encounter at games are created by someone most people don’t know anything about, or even know exists—a graphic designer.
It just so happens that the newest member of the Georgia Southern Athletics staff, Jen Richard, was hired to fill just that role. Her official title of Visual Digital Content Manager may not seem like an important role to the typical outsider, but her duties are essential for the growth and awareness of all Eagle athletic teams to fans and prospective students.
Richard, from Philadelphia, has been on the athletics staff for only a month now and has had a make the transition from a large urban city to the much more rural Statesboro.
“It has definitely been a culture shock,” Richard said, adding, however, that she has been welcomed to Eagle Nation with open arms and is excited to be a part of the university and its programs.
“I’ve been doing graphic design since I was in high school,” Richard said.
Although she’s held a variety of positions across different graphic design platforms, there was one in particular that captured her heart: college athletics.
Richard spent some time as a graduate assistant at Temple University’s athletics department while pursuing her master’s degree, and it was there that she fell in love with designing for athletic programs.
“From then on I said, ‘You know what, this is what I’m gonna do,’” Richard said.
After a nationwide search for a full-time position as a college athletics graphic designer, Richard found that Georgia Southern had an opening and was able to land the job.
Her official hire marks the first time Georgia Southern has had a Visual Digital Content Manager as a full-time position.
“To be able to come in, start fresh and start something new that they’ve never had before will give me an opportunity to grow as a designer,” Richard said.
Apart from her own personal growth, Richard wants to create a solid image and brand for Georgia Southern Athletics to help set them apart from other colleges across the country.
Rebranding and modernizing Georgia Southern athletics is a huge part of Richard’s job. She is currently working on several templates, from website designs to different sports catalogs, to accomplish the two main goals crucial to every collegiate program: selling tickets and recruiting.
The eye-popping images and intriguing videos can make a significant difference in whether someone is interested in attending an athletic event.
The process of being hired and completing her first month on the job, what she described as a “whirlwind,” has been full of excitement, and with fall sports just around the corner, Richard most definitely has her fair share of duties.
Although her career at Georgia Southern has only just begun, Eagle fans are excited to see more of her work in the future and to see the progressing, modernizing and rebranding of Eagle athletics.
Ryan Pye, The George-Anne Sports Reporter, firstname.lastname@example.org