College students discover objective and preparation by collaborating in UMSL’s Midwest Digital Advertising Convention – UMSL Day by day

MDMC2 conference logo

The Midwest Digital Marketing Conference originated at the University of Missouri – but St. Louis was held at St. Louis Union Station from 2016 to 2019 after it outgrew space on campus. The COVID-19 pandemic forced it to switch to the virtual format last year and it will remain an online event as it is its ninth year next week. (Photo by David Morrison)

Running the annual Midwest Digital Marketing Conference, which this year has more than 70 speakers attending on a four-day schedule and across multiple digital channels, requires an enormous amount of planning and coordination.

MDMC Founder Perry Drake, Co-Chair of Marketing at the University of Missouri-St. Louis College of Business Administration, has long relied on the invaluable support of his students to run the event.

PhD student Oscar Gordillo is one of the many undergraduate students helping coordinate this year’s conference, which will take place online from Monday and run through April 29th.

“I am the bridge between speakers and the MDMC, I work as the main point of contact,” said Gordillo, who is the conference’s speaker coordinator. “I also work with the UMSL finance department to draw up contracts for the speakers. I also produce the Facebook Live series for the conference and update our website with speaker profiles, biographies, meetings, etc. I do a little bit of everything. “

Gordillo and his classmates worked hard on the last minute details for the UMSL-produced conference, which last year drew an online audience of more than 4,000 people from across the country. In its ninth year, MDMC has grown from an on-campus UMSL conference to currently the largest digital marketing conference in the Midwest.

This year’s conference includes online master classes on topics such as email marketing, branding, social media development, and podcast and video production. Speakers are Lynn Fox, a digital tech manager featured in the Netflix Documentation “The Social Media Dilemma” and TikTok Brand Partnerships Manager Greg Weingarden.

The conference was held in a purely virtual format last year and will remain online this year with the exception of one small event. drake When the conference was live, about 50 students volunteered, occupied the registration desks, assisted attendees, and organized exhibitions. But he said the students who volunteered this year worked just as hard.

“We have students doing sponsorship, engaging speakers, getting contracts signed, working with the development team, creating videos, graphic design and social media,” said Drake. “I’ve built my career and I want to do everything I can to develop my students. This conference gives them the opportunity to network and consolidate their professional skills.”

Graduate Assistant Katelyn Chostner acts as the sponsorship coordinator and ensures that the conference receives sponsorship funding. The sophomore, Kevin Reilly, is the video production coordinator. In addition, Aga Blocka and Eboni Valentine provide graphic design and social media support.

Gordillo said his role as speaker coordinator was “quite demanding”.

“I would say meeting the deadlines was by far the biggest challenge,” he said. “This will be our second virtual year with over 70 on-demand sessions, workshops and two days of knowledge. That being said, the recordings and the live speakers must be ready before the conference begins. In an ideal world, every speaker would deliver their presentations on time, reply to my emails, etc. However, some of them do not. After all, they are busy executives. “

Although Gordillo, a former member of the UMSL men’s soccer team, was busy studying, he couldn’t pass up the opportunity to learn more, network and be a representative of the UMSL while participating in something so important.

“I really enjoy connecting with people and working with the MDMC team is great,” said Gordillo. “But the best feeling is to see how successful the conference is. The Midwest Digital Marketing Conference is one of the most important conferences in the country. People from the biggest brands want to take part. And I want MDMC to be successful because it also represents UMSL. “

Further information on the Mid21 Digital Marketing Conference 2021 can be found at


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