Stellar Blue Technologies, a full-service digital marketing firm based out of Neenah, WI, prides itself on not only providing it’s clientele the means and expertise to achieve their digital marketing goals but also works hard to advance the technology industry as a whole in Northeastern Wisconsin. As a major player in multiple business development boards and committees in the area, the company is continually seeking opportunities to help grow and nurture the businesses, people and communities of the Fox Valley area. Their culture encourages all employees to participate in this vision and provides them ample opportunities to get involved.
This past year, Nicole Hurd, project strategist and analytics lead with Stellar Blue, was able to take advantage of this chance to give back, and opted to share her marketing expertise with the next generation of future business leaders and professionals! Nicole volunteered multiple times throughout 2018 in a number of area school districts, including Neenah High School, Kimberly High School, and New London High School. The time spent in these classrooms provided a chance for young people to explore different marketing and entrepreneurial avenues they might be interested in, get exposure to a variety of topics, strategies, and business concepts while participating in a hands-on learning environment.
Nicole had this to share of her experience giving back to these bright young learners:
“I am truly thankful for not only the chance that Stellar Blue provides me to teach in the K-12 districts within my role, but also thankful for the opportunity the schools allow for someone such as myself and others to come in to speak to the individual classrooms. I’ve always had a passion for mentoring students ever since my role at my local youth center when I was in high school. These very students are our future, so ensuring that they are informed and prepared to make choices or pathways for themselves that will lead them to a fruitful career is so important. These students are incredibly smart and motivated and with the right tools, they will not only contribute to our business culture but to our communities by creating and inventing new and amazing ideas that will lead our future in many ways.
My goal is really to bring awareness to all the things you can do in Digital Marketing and I have done this by introducing a tool called Practice Marketing to the K-12 system, right now it is being used at a collegiate level, but I believe there is value in opening that up to the K-12 schools as well. It is a great way for students to not only live a day in the life of a marketer but also as an entrepreneur. The students love it and get really excited when I bring it into the classroom. I hope to see it trickle down and be used in a curriculum at that level someday. The more hands-on the students can be, the more involved they get and by playing the game, not only are they learning, but also having fun and taking that with them when they leave the classroom.
Being young I remember how much of an impact the older kids had made on us and how we looked up to our older peers and that’s what I am trying to do today, be a mentor, be a connection and be a pathway no matter which direction they choose to go.”
These teaching engagements have been a great avenue for Nicole to share her passions about technology, digital marketing, and business for the betterment of the youth in our communities, as well as promoting the future of technology in Northeast Wisconsin. Exposing area students to the types of roles and technological work that can be done right here, close to home further aids in securing the bright future for technology-based businesses in our area. With the help of volunteers like Nicole and Stellar Blue Technologies, these young learners are one step closer to achieving their dreams, and one step closer to helping support and grow the future IT talent pool of the region!