Faces of UMSI: Jodee Jernigan

As a promoter for Geffen Records and Allegro Media Group, Jodee Jernigan managed accounts for clients like Best Buy and Borders. In this business, she built a background of experience in advocating for users and delivering the right content to the right people. Jodee reframed her interests in 2009 and began looking at a graduate degree as a way to build skills and change careers. Having graduated from U-M with an undergraduate degree in communications, she made the decision to continue as a Wolverine and pursue an MSI.

As classes got underway, Jodee brought together her rich background in content management and writing with new knowledge in usability studies and information architecture. She volunteered with the Midwest UX Conference, where she learned that the user experience profession has a significant need for content managers and information architects to shape the fusion of business goals and user goals. To that end, Jodee embarked on cross-disciplinary studies at the Ross School of Business. In her words, “Designers often do things backward. They use Lorem Ipsum filler text when they build sites, and it results in a missing content strategy for design.”

Not a moment passes during Jodee’s day when she isn’t organizing extracurricular opportunities to bring her unique approach to content strategy to the human-computer interaction world. She started as an intern at Ann Arbor’s Whole Brain Group last summer, where she continues to manage social media channels, creates content for client sites, performs client research, search engine optimization, manages marketing campaigns, evaluates site accessibility, edits content, and applies UX heuristics to client properties. She built further on this experience as an organizer and social media coordinator for World Information Architecture Day in Ann Arbor. Over the course of two Alternative Spring Break projects through UMSI, Jodee reconnected with her music industry roots by working for the Smithsonian’s record label on social media development, and rebuilt an entire site architecture for the National Community Tax Coalition.

Even with graduation around the corner, Jodee found time this past year to work with the library system in Lincoln Park, Michigan on an information architecture and Wordpress site deployment, worked with the U-M Risk Science Center on their Drupal layout, and worked on a database application for the nonprofit Ecology Center.  As a nontraditional full-time student and full-time parent, Jodee demonstrates that with the right amount of engagement and the right support, anything is possible at UMSI.