HypeLife Brands Advocates Shift to Digital Education

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Branding and marketing agency pinpoints integration of digital creation technology as missing piece in education of Generation Y.

Mike Russo - Account Manager + Brand Navigator at HypeLife Brands (LA | KC | NYC), a branding and marketing agency

Mike Russo - Account Manager + Brand Navigator at HypeLife Brands (LA | KC | NYC)

Even publishing houses are revisiting the way they do business. It's time schools did the same."

As students across the country head back to school for the start of a new year, the majority will be versed in varying levels of the same: Science, English, History and Mathematics. But according to HypeLife Brands, one of the leading branding and marketing agencies focused on the youth market, the lack of a specifically designated technological focus is a clear mistake.

More specifically, the HypeLife Brands team is championing a shift to a more digitally integrated focus on art and writing in curriculums throughout the country. In a recent article, Mike Russo, an Account Manager at HypeLife Brands (New York), discussed the merits of traditional education with regard to art and writing. He pointed out that words and images, although once filtered by the professionally trained eyes of teachers, are now published in mere seconds on sites like Facebook and Twitter, instantly outdating more traditional forms of teaching. For Russo, a continued rise in the proliferation of technology makes this particular oversight in the educational system a serious one.

“Here you’ve got this generation that was raised on the Internet, a place where imaginations basically run wild,” says Russo, “and yet there’s no effort in our schools to bring creation and computers together.

“Even publishing houses are revisiting the way they do business. It’s time schools did the same.”

For Russo and HypeLife Brands, a large part of their job involves tracking the social and consumer habits of the Millennial population, a job that mandates they keep a pulse on youth culture at all times. On that note, Russo pointed out that the most trafficked day on Twitter in all of 2011 was the day of the MTV Movie Awards, a sure sign that Generation Y and their younger counterparts are avid users of social media.

“The stats are out there. It’s Generation Y that’s doing the creating, the talking, the writing,” continues Russo. “It stands to reason that if education’s goal is to prepare our youth for the real world, then a major shift in the way we teach art and writing needs to happen.

“After all, Facebook and Twitter and Tumblr — this is what the real world is now.”

Russo and HypeLife Brands are advocating a starring role for digital skills in students’ educations, a departure from its current, more supplemental role. Rather than simply providing access to computers or posting on blogs, Russo is pushing for hands-on interaction with the digital tools that allow students to create. Put simply, he wants digital creation literacy for all.

“Most of the students publishing their work on these sites are looking for communities that will offer support or critiques,” says Russo. "It's how they learn. But if this new method of learning keeps going the way it's going, eventually you have to ask: What will be the need for grades?

“Surely we can all agree that the best teachers should still be teachers.”

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About HypeLife Brands

HypeLife Brands is the leading branding and marketing agency focused on helping brands engage the youth market, specifically Generation Y and Millennials. Key client industries include apparel and streetwear, musicians and recording artists, entertainment and extreme sports. Founded in 2001, the agency is headquartered in Kansas City, Missouri, with offices in Los Angeles and New York City. HypeLife Brands can be found at http://www.hypelifebrands.com/.

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Zach Russell
HypeLife Brands
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