Marion joined the TechChange team as a Program Coordinator, where she helps the Events team to create meaningful and engaging virtual conferences for a worldwide audience. Before joining the Events team, Marion explored her own research on the importance and impact of virtual communication as a Psychology major and Communications minor at Davidson College and served as a TechChange Fellow.
Q: So, tell us more about yourself. How did you end up working in events?
I’ve always been interested in how we communicate in a virtual world. I explored this question at Davidson College through my research in Communication Studies — from gendered toy marketing to social justice advertising and movie consumption trends. However, it wasn’t until the COVID-19 pandemic that I was exposed to virtual events as a tool for communication. As a college student studying remotely, I quickly became familiar with the insights (and oversights) of a virtual classroom. I saw an opportunity for higher education and many other fields to utilize the advantages of a virtual world that companies like TechChange had refined (and wrote about it in the TechChange blog here). I wanted to play a part in TechChange’s goal to build innovative and engaging virtual events with a mission.
Q: How did you first hear about TechChange?
Davidson College offers an amazing opportunity called Gig-hub consultancy, where a group of students are offered access to several remote, short-term job offerings in fields of their interest. I first heard about TechChange through the Gig-hub program, and once I started working there, just absolutely fell in love with the company and its mission. Every time my short-term contract would come to a close, we kept on renewing it! Now, as a full-time member of the Events team, I couldn’t be more grateful to the Gig-hub program for first introducing me to my career.
Q: What are some of your favorite parts of working at TechChange so far?
The people! While I really do love the work at TechChange, it’s the people on my team that inspire me to work harder and to produce a product that I am proud of. We collaborate to produce and facilitate the most amazing conferences, and TechChange wouldn’t be the same without them.
Q: What excites you about this role?
It’s a great feeling to be able to support so many different projects at once – there’s always something new to try or work on! One day I’ll be building out the DRG platform for a conference in democracy assistance and the next I’ll be stepping in to moderate a SID-W meeting about writing your own memoir. The day after could be spent brainstorming with a new partner organization, editing conference recordings, or networking with experts in a vast array of fields. I think it’s amazing to meet so many different people working towards a similar mission – and to act as a real contributor towards making that goal come to life!
Q: Anything you look forward to working on or learning at TechChange in the next year?
The TechChange Events team is always looking for ways to improve its process to become more efficient and invaluable to its partners. I’m incredibly excited to be a part of the team’s efforts to innovate and streamline the way we build out, facilitate, and review our events. Not only am I working to produce the amazing and vital global conferences happening now, I’m also helping to establish the systems that will improve conferences like these in the future (and building up the creative thinking skills to do this)!
Q: Lastly, what’s something that not a lot of people know about you?
I’m a pretty good beatboxer! It surprises a lot of people when I tell them, but I was the beatboxer for my a cappella group in high school and for a couple groups in college. Really, anything in the performing arts is a passion of mine, from beatboxing to ballet. I believe that the arts provide a space to connect and communicate on a deeper level, and that the stage is a catalyst to broadcast that message.