Jan HolmevikJan Rune Holmevik recognizes that the teaching methods and resources must meet the needs of a rapidly changing world. Students leaving Clemson, whether they are engineers or English majors, must be able to produce professional level products quickly, effectively and skillfully.

That’s why Holmevik, an associate professor and associate chair for Clemson’s English department, joined an interdepartmental team of university faculty and staff to bring a Fortune 500 company to campus to create a better, more progressive learning environment for students. As part of an initiative that involved the university’s English department and other departments, Clemson University has collaborated with Adobe Systems for a three-year university-wide site license. As a result, university faculty, staff and students have free access to nearly 30 Adobe Creative Cloud applications, such as Adobe InDesign®, Adobe® Acrobat® Pro and Adobe Presenter®.

“There are so many platforms in which media are produced today, and all of those media are how students are going to be producing in the future. Students are now not just writing for print media, but for electronic and social media as well. Transmedia is where most everyone is going to be publishing in the future. If we send students out into the world only knowing how to write for the print medium, then they would be very unprepared, and then we wouldn’t have done our job,” Holmevik said.

The licensing agreement allows students, faculty and staff to download and produce projects using professional-grade products.

“There are several people on campus who have been working with Adobe products, but they are the creative professionals,” explained Holmevik. “Others would send them a document and expect them to ‘pretty it up.’ But what happened since the early 2000’s is that the learner profile has changed from being a consumer of knowledge to being both a consumer and producer of knowledge. The student has become a maker in all disciplines. They are turning their learning around and making something, producing something. The very concept of a student is being rewritten.”

Holmevik is actively in the process of utilizing the products with his English Capstone Seminar, allowing 15 of his students to learn the Adobe programs so that they will be able to become literate in multiple media platforms for writing and publication. In his course, The Walking Dead: Transmedia Storytelling and Literary Convergence, Holmevik’s students will recreate the popular “Walking Dead” cultural phenomenon on multiple media, such as film, video games, and graphic novels.

“I hadn’t watched the Walking Dead until just last year, but I was interested in the phenomena of transmedia as a new way to tell stories using different media,” said Holmevik. “I realized this would be a good case study for a course on transmedia, and realized this was the material for a senior seminar.”

As Holmevik embraces the new and exciting opportunities Adobe is bringing to Clemson for both students and faculty, so should the rest of the university. Holmevik believes that Adobe plans to use the new license, made special for Clemson, as a long term model to expand their client base with other institutions. “We are very fortunate to be heading this, and it is a great opportunity for both Clemson and Adobe alike.”

Students will be prepared as they join the working force, Holmevik says, finishing with why Clemson is so excited to gain these valuable assets. “The world has changed so quickly, the traditional model of higher education is quickly becoming outdated. Certain types of knowledge changes so quickly, sometimes it can change on a day-to-day basis. We want to make it possible for a student to keep up in this quickly progressing world and not just have the skill sets to produce, but to be able to adapt to rapidly changing formats.”

For more information, a full list of available Adobe applications, and installation instructions, click here.

Read more about Clemson’s collaboration with Adobe here.

 

 –Julia Turner, Class of 2014