Greg Chalk

Advertising

Advertising Instructor
The Art Institute of Pittsburgh — Online Division

Marketing

As instructors, we have a responsibility to help students reach their goals, and it is a responsibility I take very seriously. Dr. Andrew Burnstine , Fashion Marketing & Management Instructor , The Art Institute of Pittsburgh — Online Division
Was there a defining moment when you knew you were destined to become a creative professional?

At 24 years of age, I was named Product Manager for the Active Tops division of Reebok Apparel. I was the youngest Product Manager at Reebok worldwide, overseeing one of the largest apparel lines for the company. In my role, I interacted frequently with a talented group of graphic designers and creative professionals. I was and continue to be inspired by seeing how these individuals could take a line plan and creative brief and generate products that were artistically beautiful while also commercially viable. I truly respect the creative process and feel extremely fortunate to work at an institution that develops our students in such a way.

How do you weave your professional background into the classroom experience?

My background is diverse, both from the types of organizations I have worked with to the positions I have held. As such, I can provide a well-rounded perspective that I bring to my students. Today’s world requires all employees to be well rounded. Thus, it is critical to show prospective employers that you possess this varied skill set. I possess knowledge and experience in many areas of marketing, from print and creative design to analytics, content development, and digital and overall strategic concept, and I can bring these elements to the classroom daily.

What class assignment exemplifies your approach to teaching and mentoring?

For me, I find our entire process inspiring. I love the overall structure of our advertising courses that has the student creating a project throughout several weeks of the class, learning all of the components and seeing how they all come together. In the end, students will complete their degree program with a tremendous knowledge of all the aspects of the creative process and how to build a comprehensive advertising strategy. The students will push themselves on a daily and weekly basis to create these projects and build their portfolios. It is this iterative process that yields results and allows students to rise, step-by-step, until it is their time to fly.

How does collaboration contribute to students’ success—particularly when students from various programs work together?

Collaboration is critical, both in the classroom and in the advertising industry. The better that individuals can communicate with their peers, employer, or client, the more successful they will be. As an instructor, I like to present course material in an innovative and collaborative way. This will help promote skill building for professional development and ensure that the expertise learned in the classroom translates to a student’s occupational growth spanning a lifetime of careers.

What’s the most important thing you impart to students to help them succeed in class and the real world?

To create a respectful, nurturing environment that instills confidence among students, thus placing them in the best possible position to comprehend the course material and produce their highest quality work. Students should pursue their coursework and career ambitions with this confidence. The most successful professionals are those who trust what they know while always striving to learn more and then applying this knowledge throughout their careers.

Is there anything else you'd like to share about yourself, your experience, or your role as an instructor at The Art Institutes?

It is cliché, but I love meeting students where they are and getting them where they want to go. Every student here has a story and their own unique circumstances that led them to further their education. I find it extremely rewarding to help them on their journey. As instructors, we have a responsibility to help these students reach their goals, and it is a responsibility I take very seriously.