Petterson to deliver keynote speech at Creative Industry Day

Mar 24, 2017

Thumbnail for Petterson to deliver keynote speech at Creative Industry Day
Thumbnail for Petterson to deliver keynote speech at Creative Industry Day

Experts in their fields will be equipped with valuable career advice for students as they occupy RIT’s Gordon Field House for Creative Industry Day next week.

The event — which will go from 11 a.m.-6 p.m. March 30 — provides students with an opportunity to connect and network with professionals, receive portfolio reviews and listen to career speakers. And the main speaker is a young, successful alumnus of the College of Imaging Arts and Sciences.

Sean Petterson, CEO and founder of New York City-based StrongArm Technologies, is scheduled to kick off the event by delivering the keynote speech from 11 a.m.-noon. Petterson is a 2013 industrial design graduate who was named a 2017Forbes 30 Under 30 honoree in manufacturing and industry.

StrongArm is an industry-leading safety science company that focuses on using analytics and ergonomics to create wearable equipment that leaves employees far less prone to injury and promotes overall safer work environments.

Petterson has developed protective safety equipment called ErgoSkeletons. It’s a safety and efficiency solution for everyday blue-collar workers, as the wearable technology reduces risk of injury and fatigue when lifting while increasing productivity.

Petterson built the first ErgoSkeleton at RIT in 2012.

Another CIAS alumnus, Ben McChesney, will speak at Creative Industry Day, as a member of a career panel that will discuss “How to Succeed in the Creative Industry.”

McChesney is a 2010 new media design graduate who is now the chief technical officer/managing partner of Helios Interactive Technologies.

The career panel with McChesney, owner/CEO of RISING and RIT lecturer Barry Strauber and other to-be-announced guests is scheduled for noon-1 p.m. It will feature a discussion and question-and-answer session about the factors that play into a winning formula for success in the field.

After that, portfolio reviews and networking opportunities go from 1-6 p.m.   

The night before Creative Industry Day there will also be pre-event presentations, where a pair of CIAS graduates are slated to represent the companies they work for.

Ryan Kiley (2015; new media design) is scheduled to be there on behalf of Portland, Ore.-based Instrument, a digital creative agency where Kiley is a designer. He is set to present from 5:30-6 p.m.

Additionally, Kyle Beikirch (2010; new media design) will present from 6-7 p.m. He is a principal creative developer at AKQA in San Francisco.

Hilary Dennis, creative director at Helios Interactive, will start the pre-event with a presentation from 5-5:30 p.m. All of the activity March 29 is set to take place in room 1125 of the Chester F. Carlson Center for Imaging Sciences.

Creative Industry Day is sponsored by RIT’s Office of Career Services, in collaboration with CIAS, the B. Thomas Golisano College of Computing and Information Sciences and Alumni Relations.

A wide range of businesses are scheduled to attend — from colossal, global companies to smaller, boutique agencies. Local representatives and companies from across the company are anticipated to be there. Overall, 70 businesses are expected to partake in the event.

Students attending the event are encouraged to use the hashtag #RITCreativity on Twitter and Instagram. For more information, including registration and adding work samples to a portfolio site, go to or call (585) 475-2301. Students should bring their ID for checking in at the event.