Assistant Professor James Jarc started teaching at COTC part-time in 2014 and then became a full-time faculty member in 2018. He is a Level II Google Certified Educator and has several micro-credentials in areas such as special education, curriculum design and online instruction. Prior to teaching, he owned a firm that offered creative and technical services to clients across the country.
Doctor of Education in Interdisciplinary Leadership
from Creighton University
Master of Arts in Communication & Leadership from Gonzaga University
Bachelor of Arts in Communication (Advertising) from Loyola University New Orleans
2018-19 COTC Full-Time Teaching Excellence Award
2020 League of Excellence Award from the League for Innovation in the Community College
What is digital media design technology and what can students do with their degree?
The field of digital media design is very broad and dynamic. In fact, many of the jobs and careers that students will have in the next 10-15 years don’t even exist yet! So it’s a very exciting time to be learning the foundations of digital communication technology. Students who complete our program can work in jobs like graphic designer, web developer and social media creator. They can work for small businesses or organizations, or may find themselves working in an agency or as a freelancer, working with multiple clients.
How did you become involved in digital media?
I was lucky to have been exposed to early digital media technology in high school and fell in love! I studied advertising and digital media in college and then got right into the business after graduating. I really enjoy the challenges that come with communication and technology — the rapidly changing industry means there’s always learning going on and tons of new creative opportunities!
What do you enjoy most about teaching at COTC?
One of the things I love most about teaching at COTC is the community that we have. The DMD department specifically is pretty small and many students take multiple classes with each other. I feel like I really get to know students and can develop strong working relationships during their time in the program. That is so important for supporting students and motivating, challenging and caring for one another. The campus-wide community is also very supportive, encouraging and engaging; I have gotten to work with a lot of great people from many different departments and offices on campus.
What accomplishment are you most proud of?
An accomplishment that I am proud of is being able to implement innovative and exciting educational experiences for students. For example, a group of students, staff and administration spent more than a year collaboratively developing a new online new student orientation platform for incoming COTC students. Students got to work with many different technologies while working with a “real” client! Experiences like these are so valuable for students, so I am pleased that I have had the opportunity to lead these projects.
What advice do you have for students?
My advice for students…especially in the DMD program: Play around. Try it. Experiment. Have fun! One of the best ways to grow as a creative individual is to move outside of your comfort zone and experience new techniques, processes and outcomes. Going to school is a chance for students to learn new things, and I work really hard to make sure that everyone feels safe and supported in all of my classes.
What interests, hobbies or talents do you have outside of the classroom?
In my spare time, I enjoy cooking, reading and playing guitar.