Networking Fair and Symposium

March 22-26, 2021

Networking Fair and Symposium

The Fine and Performing Arts Department’s biennial Networking Fair and Symposium features dynamic speakers and interactive sessions related to careers with an arts focus. Attendees will have the opportunity to meet educators and professionals from the fields of graphic design, photography, recording arts, broadcasting, theatre, music, music business and fine arts.

This year’s event will be conducted on Zoom and is free and open to the community!

Keynote Speakers

Interning 101 + Building a Sustainable Music Career with Emily White

Monday, March 22, 12:30 p.m.

Emily White

Emily White, Author and Speaker
Emily White’s career spans the entertainment industry, carving out a unique path, defining a modern maven. Her journey began at Northeastern University in Boston where, upon seeing The Dresden Dolls play on campus, she introduced herself and quickly became a core member of the band’s team.

White became a world-class tour manager and an internship at MTV/VH1 solidified her love for international business. In 2008, she launched Whitesmith Entertainment, overseeing the careers of musicians and comedians like Brendan Benson of The Reconteurs and Margaret Cho.

White is currently an in-demand speaker and consultant due to her expertise within the modern music and sports industries, artist development and social media. Her name has graced the cover of Billboard Magazine and her work profiled in Fast Company, Forbes and Bloomberg.

In 2017, White released her first book, Interning 101, an how-to guide for interns in modern business. Her second book, How to Build a Sustainable Music Career & Collect All Revenue Streams is an Amazon Best seller and used as a course book at countless colleges around the globe.

White became an adjunct instructor for New York University’s Clive Davis Institute of Recorded Music, at NYU’s Tisch School of The Arts.

She launched Collective Entertainment with colleague, Melissa Garcia. Collective Entertainment houses all of White’s management, entrepreneurial work, and beyond.

Overcoming Adversity with Dr. Victor Coleman

Friday, March 26, 12:30 p.m.

Dr. Victor Coleman, Ph.D.

Dr. Victor Coleman, Ph.D.
Dr. Victor J. Coleman Jr. is an acclaimed motivational speaker from Toledo, Ohio. Born into a poverty-stricken life, Victor has battled depression, drug and gang affiliations, along with low self-esteem and poor scholastic performance.

Harnessing those painful experiences, Victor has employed them to make an invaluable impact in the lives of others. Victor encourages others to take flight towards their ultimate destination – greatness.

He allows his life to be an “open book” with complete transparency because he genuinely believes that through his story, others will find the tenacity to succeed beyond their current circumstances.

In 2010, Victor graduated from Full Sail University with a Bachelor of Science Degree in Entertainment Business. In 2013, he received his Master’s Degree in Entertainment Business. In 2019, he defended his dissertation on cross-ethnic mentoring, completing his Ph.D. in business management, specializing in leadership.

As a result of his dedicated efforts, Victor founded the V.J. Coleman Jr. Flight School in 2010; a coaching and mentoring organization that continues to encourage others to take flight toward their own spiritual, physical and mental destinations of success.

In 2019, Victor also launched Flying Financially Free, a financial literacy course where he educates others on budgeting, credit, debt payoff, and real estate. In this course, Victor shares the exact blueprint that helped him live rent and mortgage-free, putting him in a position to pay for his college education.

Victor continues to impact the lives of his family and friends daily while aspiring to share his message with the world. His life experiences and expertise in leadership and mentoring enable him to reach and empower a wide population throughout the nation.

Join him as you prepare to take flight.



Transfer Advising Session: Fine Arts Programs
Monday, March 22, 10:30 a.m.

Hear about how Owens classes transfer at Bowling Green State University, the University of Toledo, Lourdes University and the University of Findlay!

From Ancient Art History to a Career in the Arts with Adam Levine
Wednesday, March 24, 9 a.m.

Join Adam Levine, Director of the Toledo Museum of Art, as he shares how his studies in art history, and specifically in ancient art history, prepared him for his career as a curator and eventually as a director.  Adam will share his personal journey, explain where he thinks museums are going, and emphasize why a grounding in history is more essential than ever.

Managing a Commercial Gallery with Condessa Croninger
Wednesday, March 24 3:30 p.m.

In this session, 20 North Gallery art director Condessa Croninger will discuss the role and logistics of an independent commercial gallery, the responsibilities of directorship and managing relationships with artists and art buyers.

Finding Your Place in the Arts: How to Market Yourself as an Artist with Kerry Kirkpatrick
Thursday, March 25, 12:30 p.m.

Kerry Kirkpatrick will share perspectives on her personal practices as an artist and how she manages multiple sources of income to remain an independent artist.  Topics of discussion will include the concepts and physical processes needed to make meaningful artworks, how to market oneself as an artist, and local sources available to Toledo artists.

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So, You Think You Want to Work in Radio with Al Isaacson
Tuesday, March 23 9:30 a.m.

Join Big Al, General Manager and Co-host of Cave Radio and the professions of music students in a detailed Q & A about what it’s like to work in online radio. Explore the studio and ask your questions!

Writing and Live TV On-Air & Online with Libby Fritz
Thursday, March 25, 3:30 p.m.

Join Owens alumnus Libby Fritz to hear about a “day in the life” at WTOL Toledo. How have the day-to-day responsibilities and interaction with colleagues changed in the age of COVID-19? Libby will also detail the skills students can practice now to prepare for the live studio environment.

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Marketing for a Cause—an Inside Look at Nonprofit Marketing and Communications with Kate Fineske
Monday, March 22, 3 p.m.

Have you ever wondered what it would be like to use your creative marketing skills in support of a cause or community driven organization? There are notable differences between non-profit and for-profit entities and oftentimes many differences in their communication tactics and priorities. What is it like to work for a non-profit? Would you be a good fit? How does one get hired in the non-profit sector? Find out what makes marketing a non-profit entity different—from the creative process to the business itself—during a conversation with Kate Fineske, Senior Director of Institutional Advancement at the National Museum of the Great Lakes.

Lightbulb! with Melanie Dunn
Wednesday, March 24 5:30 p.m.

How to harness the power of the creative process to fuel your creative career.

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Live from Stone Soup Recording Studio with Eric Sills
Tuesday, March 23, 12:30 p.m.

Join Eric as he takes us on a personal tour of his studio in Maumee, Ohio. Eric will share some of his various experiences of running and growing a studio, as well as offering tips about how to be successful.

Music Streaming with Larry Meyer, Esq.
Wednesday, March 24, 9:30 a.m.

Larry will discuss legal issues surrounding music streaming including typical payment rates, recording contract considerations, the Mechanical Licensing Collective, and more. Students will be free to ask questions.

Transfer Advising Session: Music Education & Performance Programs
Thursday, March 25, 10:30 a.m.

Hear about how Owens classes transfer at the University of Toledo!

Creating Lifelong Opportunities with Melissa Barber
Thursday, March 25, 2 p.m.

Executive Producer, Singer and President of Purpose Productions, Melissa Barber, will share the building blocks from her education and professional life which have led to a diverse career filled with interesting clients, creative colleagues and productions that she is passionate about. Performing on stages from Cleveland to New York to Chicago and producing national conferences in convention halls throughout the United States, Ms. Barber will discuss the creative person’s ability and need to create lifelong opportunities. Speaking points will include:

  • Cultivating your talents
  • Building a lifelong network of colleagues
  • Being both a leader and a team player
  • Being versatile AND staying relevant

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Networking & Marketing on a Ramen Noodle Budget with Eric Leszkowicz
Tuesday, March 23, 10 a.m.

NetWORK contains the word WORK in it. So, learn to work smarter and not harder. Networking also rarely involves investments of money as long as you do it right. Eric has a single referral from networking that has generated six figures. Learn about specific actions you can take now to network and market on a “Ramen Noodle budget.”

The Large Format Approach to Art with Mat Marrash
Tuesday, March 23, 12 p.m.

Large format photography is more than old cameras and expensive pieces of film. In this presentation photographer Mat Marrash will share how he translates his experience in shooting big film to all aspects of visual art.

The Art of Composition from Concept to Creation with Eric Eggly
Tuesday, March 23, 3 p.m.

Composing our images in camera or in computer can make or break the success of an image. We will be taking a closer look at composing images in detail in order to better take advantage of our surroundings, our subjects and props. By reviewing a number of award-winning images we’ll see what you can do as an artist before and after the shutter is clicked to inspire thought provoking and attention-grabbing work.

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A Day in the Life of a Professional Stagehand with Wayne Weber
Monday, March 22 3:30 pm

This session will give a context to theatre students on how to work as a stagehand. What are the benefits of union membership? How do you join a union? What are the challenges in working a wide variety of genres and shows?

Collaborative Theatre: Creating New Work with Joey Schultz
Tuesday, March 23, 2 pm

Joey will discuss his background and training in Collaborative Theatre and highlight the process of creating new work. Hear about the methods which make this genre focus on social impact for both performer and audience.

Transfer Advising Session: Theatre Programs
Wednesday, March 24, 12 p.m.

Hear about how Owens classes transfer at Bowling Green State University, the University of Toledo and the University of Findlay!

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Session Presenters

Melissa Barber

Melissa Barber, Executive Producer/Entertainer
Melissa Barber is an inspirational speaker and singer – presenting concerts and talks for groups of all sizes – witnessing to what Jesus continues to do in her life, personally, professionally and spiritually, as well as in the lives of others. A woman of many talents, she is also a highly-sought after executive producer in the staging of national conferences and events. Blending her event and video production acumen with her strong faith and love for music, she has dedicated her time and talent to music ministry, retreat leadership, drama ministry, healing services and raising funds for the National MS Society. She combined her passions for ministry and production to start Purpose Productions – a company focused on concerts, keynotes and events – helping corporations and congregations to communicate key messages and ignite hearts.

Melissa Barber is an Executive Producer for public and private conferences, conventions, meetings and events. She manages team members on all pre-production elements, including script development, speaker graphics, video development, custom music and entertainment, coaching presenters, site inspections, A/V coordination and onsite direction of the show.
Highly-skilled in multiple disciplines, Melissa not only produces live events, but also videos and web/multimedia programs for national corporations and museums. With a lifelong background in entertainment, Melissa exudes creativity, focus and superb organizational skills, and has worked in the production of live events, both theatrical and corporate. She believes that versatility is key when it comes to creating and presenting the best content possible for every client’s unique audience, whether the message is being presented via video, stage or digital device.

Over the past twenty-five years, she has managed event, video and digital interactive projects for Fortune 500 & 1000 corporations, retail corporations, automotive corporations, financial institutions, pharmaceutical companies, national associations, medical institutions, museums/science centers, educational institutions/organizations, religious organizations and theatrical organizations. And several of the projects she has produced have been the recipient of Communicator Awards and Telly Awards.

Condessa Croninger
“Condessa” oil on panel
by David J. Eichenberg

Condessa Croninger, Artist and Artist-Educator
Condessa Croninger is an artist and artist-educator working with many arts and cultural institutions in the Toledo region since 1990. Affiliated with the independent sales gallery, 20 North Gallery, from its inception in 1993, Croninger was appointed art director in 2008.

Additionally, since 1998, she has served as the educational outreach specialist for Toledo Ballet/Toledo Alliance for the Performing Arts, providing classroom enrichment and narration for student performances, as well as performing in Toledo Ballet’s annual production of “The Nutcracker” – the longest running production of this holiday classic in the nation.

Melanie Dunn

Melanie Dunn, Cuttlefish Graphics
Melanie Dunn is the owner of Cuttlefish Graphics. Melanie graduated from the Owens Community College Commercial Art Technology program and has expanded her capabilities by working in Agency, Corporate and Freelance environments. With a passion for design, Melanie has a passion to collaborate with clients and fellow marketers to create cohesive campaigns. She takes pride in the ability to help clients identify their target market and create content that gets results.

Eric Eggly

Eric Eggly, Photographer
Eric Eggly is 30-plus years into a career he loves. Love clearly, magically, joyously, exquisitely, painfully, humorously and artfully always shows. Eric is provocative without the heavy hand of provocation. Eric is dramatic without the drama. Eric is a master photographer without the need to prove it.

Choices of perspective, the use of light vs. shadow and unexpected manipulations of environments are just a few of the elements that distinguish Eric’s work beyond the horde.

Directing with respect, positivity and passion is a given for Eric. What takes Eric’s direction to another level is an inherent sense of style and an ability to coax the best (or if needed, the worst) out of a subject or situation. Organizations and companies, like GM, Ford, Chrysler, Audi, VW, Converse, University of Michigan, Honeywell, La-Z-Boy and the Detroit Red Wings, plus sponsors Chimera, Elinchrom, Nanlite, Sekonic and X-rite, recognize Eric’s extraordinary talents.

Matt Erman

Matt Erman, Capture 1 Studios
For many years, Matt Erman spent his days working a 9-5 job earning a living as a graphic artist. He came to realize that the need for a quality media outlet was an ever-growing demand. Matt already had a photo and video background from college, so it was an easy decision to move ahead with a plan that would start him on the path of self employment. By January of 2013, Erman was ready to open the doors to Capture 1 Studios specializing in video production and photography. Success would come quickly for the studio as it landed several major clients in the first few months of operations. Matt soon found himself overwhelmed by the response, and immediately began plans to expand his company. New services were added and the studio expanded into Film Duplication & Transfer as well as Web Design and Narrative Filmmaking. Capture 1 Studios has been featured in over twelve festivals, won multiple awards, and has gained a wide viewership of fans. Most recently, the studio produced ‘The Legend of Holcomb Road’, a local haunt put to the big screen featured a cast and crew of over 40 individuals. In its opening night, over 900 fans showed up from all over NW Ohio to see the film.

Kate Fineske

Kate Fineske, National Museum of the Great Lakes
Kate Fineske is the Senior Director of Institutional Advancement at the National Museum of the Great Lakes’ where she oversees the museum’s marketing, communications, development and community partnerships. She has over 20 years of experience in communications, education and nonprofit leadership and began her career in advertising. Over time, she bridged her communication work with non-profit operations, having formerly served as Assistant Executive Director for a national nonprofit in New York and, more recently, as United Way of Greater Toledo’s Vice President. Kate has an undergraduate degree from the University of Toledo and a Masters of Business Administration from Lourdes University.

Libby Fritz

Libby Fritz, WTOL
Libby Fritz is a 2017 Owens graduate with a degree in communications studies. During her time at Owens she was extremely active in campus life, including the campus radio station, OCCR. She was hired at WTOL in 2017, before graduation and will be celebrating her 4th anniversary this April. She is a production assistant and digital content producer in which she creates graphics and operates their graphic system for broadcast, writes articles for their website, and creates social media content. She resides in Perrysburg, Ohio and in her free time likes to travel, go for walks, and is learning Kannada.

Al Isaacson

Al Isaacson, Cave Radio
A father of three from the Greater Detroit Area, Al has worn many hats but one that has stuck with him is that of Funny Man. Once a regular at open mic night at Mark Ridley’s Comedy Castle in Royal Oak, Al has been itching to get back on the mic and bring laughter to the world. As an Air Force veteran, youth baseball and hockey coach, father, carpenter, dysfunctional family member, and all around over opinionated jerk, the only thing left to do was to start spewing his disdain for other people’s stupid problems and his own on the radio. Those attributes were exactly what Cave Radio (Detroit) was looking for, which gave him his own show and later made him General Manager.

Kerry Kirkpatrick

Kerry Kirkpatrick, Visual Storyteller and Digital Artist
Kerry Kirkpatrick received her BFA in Digital Art at Bowling Green State University in May of 2016 and since then has sharpened her skillset in visual storytelling and digital art. Her work ranges from images of everyday life to conceptual and fantasy pieces. She believes you can find a story in anything as long as you look close enough. Kerry’s passion for the arts has led her to volunteer for the Toledo Federation of Art Societies as Recording Secretary and the ACM SIGGRAPH Professional and Student Chapters Committee as the visual designer.

Eric Leszkowicz

Eric Leszkowicz, Studio Photographer
Eric Leszkowicz and his wife Jessica own Keepsake Portraits in Findlay, Ohio. Known for artistic portraits, Eric also has a successful commercial studio specializing in product photography. While winning national awards has been exciting, creating large wall art to be handed down for generations fuels their passion for their work.

Adam Levine

Adam M. Levine, Toledo Museum of Art
Adam M. Levine serves as the Edward Drummond and Florence Scott Libbey director of the Toledo Museum of Art. Previously, Levine held the titles of associate director, overseeing management of the Collections, Marketing Communications, Education and Information Systems departments, as well as maintaining responsibility for all curatorial activities related to ancient art; assistant director; and head of Visitor Engagement. Levine originally joined TMA in 2013, when he was named an Andrew W. Mellon Fellow, a two-year post-doctoral program designed to prepare the next generation of museum leaders. Prior to the Mellon Fellowship, Levine was a collections management assistant in the department of Greek and Roman art at the Metropolitan Museum of Art.

Mat Marrash

Mat Marrash, Photographer
Mat Marrash is a man in love with film photography. In the spring of 2010, after two years of dragging through the mediocrity of the digital lifestyle, Mat picked up a Hasselblad 500C and never looked back! Mat likes playing with all sorts of cameras, all the way from his handy-dandy Olympus Trip 35 all the way up to his mammoth Tachihara 8×10” field camera. He experiments with whatever film he can get his hands on, and processes it all by hand in the darkroom. Mat even makes his own prints by hand, producing fine art silver gelatin prints from 8×10″ to 40×50″. Right now, he’s even playing around with some of photography’s oldest traditions, Alternative Process Printing; dating back to the 1850’s, Mat’s in the darkroom printing just like the pioneers of modern photography!

When not shooting, Mat’s doing everything he can to promote film photography. You can hear Mat alongside two other great photographers Michael Raso and John Fedele on the bi-monthly internet radio program, The Film Photography Podcast. Starting in 2020, he also started back to making videos on his YouTube channel. Tune in to “Large Format Friday” to see his latest work with large format photography.

Larry Meyer

Larry Meyer, Esq.
Larry Meyer graduated from Bowling Green State University and the University of Toledo College of Law. He clerked in the Toledo Municipal Court for the Honorable Thaddeus N. Walinksi. He practices insurance defense law and general civil litigation in Toledo with Manahan, Pietrykowski, DeLaney and Wasielewski. A portion of Larry’s practice focuses on music law issues. He is a current board member of the Arts Commission of Greater Toledo and is also a working drummer.

Joey Schultz

Joey Schultz, CAT Youth Theatre
Joey Schultz is the Associate Program Director for the CAT Youth Theatre, creating original theatre from the ideas of young people. Joey is passionate about implementing workshops and experiences that celebrate stories—especially those that fall outside the dominant discourse. He facilitates participant-centered, community-building processes rooted in authentic connection and creative expression that move towards sustainable change. He co-founded and served as Program Director of The Queer Youth Theater at The Door. Other collaborations include Under the Radar Festival at The Public Theater, Two River Theater Company, and Story Pirates. He is a proud member of the Lincoln Center Theater Director’s Lab. For two consecutive years, he devised original plays and led Forum Theatre workshops with drama students at Kigali Institute of Education in Rwanda. He holds a Bachelor of Arts in Theatre from the Ohio State University & Master of Arts in Applied Theatre from CUNY School of Professional Studies.

Eric Sills

Eric Sills, Stone Soup Recording Studios
Eric Sills is the owner and engineer at Stone Soup Recording Studios in Maumee, Ohio. A former drummer and electrical engineer, he now records and mixes musicians in groups of all sizes from solo to orchestras, and styles ranging from classical to jazz to metal.

Wayne Webber

Wayne Weber, IATSE Local #24
Wayne Weber spent five years as an Entertainment Production Manager for Royal Caribbean Cruise Lines and has toured with over fifteen national Broadway touring productions. He has served as Production Manager for the outdoor dramas “Tecumseh”, “The Cross and Sword”, and “Blue Jacket.” He has numerous years of experience with regional professional productions all over the country and has taught stage combat for various productions across the country. Currently, Wayne serves as a freelance stagehand with IATSE Local #24 and primarily serves as the Head Video person for the Peristyle Theatre, as well as a Cable Grip/Utilities person for ESPN, Fox and CBS Sports.