Aces of Trades: Justin Dean brings creativity to Marion Technical College

·3 min read
Justin Dean from Marion Tech is shown in front a new sign that he designed for the school's upcoming Esports program.
Justin Dean from Marion Tech is shown in front a new sign that he designed for the school's upcoming Esports program.

MARION – He’s creative, as few people are. He learned it the old-fashioned way.

“My father taught me how to draw,” recalled Justin Dean. “He worked as a drafter (pencil drawings, pre-computer-aided drafting) when I was young and in my teenage years, I spent a lot of time drawing and sketching things like superheroes and cartoon characters.”

“It was about my junior year in high school,” he continued, “I decided I wanted to continue doing art, but traded in pencils for computers and digital mediums. I always thought my dream job would be designing album art and CD inserts for my favorite bands.”

Today Dean is director of marketing at Marion Technical College.

“I see myself responsible for shaping and promoting the Marion Tech brand,” he said.

Now 41, Justin Dean grew up in the Maysville, Kentucky area, graduated from high school there in 1998, earned a degree in multimedia from the Art Institute of Pittsburgh in 2000, and a Bachelor of Fine Arts in visualist design from Shawnee State University in Portsmouth in 2008.

“I did a lot of freelance graphic design and multimedia work in my twenties,” he recalled, “but landed my first real full-time job as a designer at Maysville Community and Technical College in Maysville, Kentucky. After a few title changes and several years, I moved to Athens, Ohio and became a designer/marketing specialist for culinary services at Ohio University. After a few years I applied and was chosen to be the marketing director at Marion Technical College.”

“The transition from designer to marketer was a natural one,” he added, “as I picked up tons of marketing knowledge on the job. I take pride in my ability to take on all aspects of a project, so I not only develop the marketing strategies, work with vendors and maintain the budget, but also take on the design work itself, too, for the ads, website, multimedia, etc. I also appreciate being a director and having a talented support team to assist with major projects – and being a mentor to them.”

As such, Dean is a real asset to the school according to Dr. Amy Adams, vice president of planning & advancement at Marion Technical College.

“Justin has been a wonderful addition to MTC,” assessed Adams. “Justin has led significant marketing efforts for our college and those efforts are really paying off. Frequently I hear how people in our community are now aware of Marion Tech and all that we have to offer, whereas MTC was not necessarily on people’s radar before.”

“Some of the biggest accomplishments Justin has been involved with,” Adams continued, “include our 50th anniversary celebration and the launch of our new mascots. Those two projects are just a sample of Justin’s great work!”

“I do think a lot of my creativity,” Dean responded, “is just something that’s part of me, that I was born with a creative mind, and I’m fortunate that I’ve had support, resources and opportunities to develop and express creative talents.”

“But you do have to ‘practice’ to be creative and stay fresh,” he concluded. “I certainly have learned how to better express or implement creative ideas through education and work experience along the way.”

For more

Marion Technical College is located at 1467 Mt. Vernon Ave. in Marion. For more information, call 740-386-4208 or log on www.mtc.edu.

Aces of Trades is a weekly series focusing on people and their jobs – whether they’re unusual jobs, fun jobs or people who take ordinary jobs and make them extraordinary. If you have a suggestion for a future profile, let us know at news@marionstar.com.

This article originally appeared on Marion Star: Aces: Justin Dean brings creativity to Marion Technical College

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