SCAD MFA Student
My name is Mark Koberlein and I have been a professional web designer, app developer, and instructor for about 13 years. I live in a small town next to Allentown, PA with my wife 2 daughters. My wife and I are avid gamers and movie watchers.
I am currently a tenure-track Instructor in the Communication Design department at Northampton Community College in Bethlehem PA, where I teach courses in general computer graphics, web design, mobile applications, interactive design, server-side programming, and animation.
I started this journey as an undergrad at Messiah College in Grantham, PA. For the first 2 years, I studied Computer Science and then changed my major to Religious Studies to finish my under-grad studies with a Bachelor of Arts. After college, I decided to not pursue the religious track and instead I went back to my technical roots and took a job as a database developer. This was a very technical job but I was given opportunities to work on the company’s websites and a few marketing campaigns. These projects gave me a taste of commercial design and I knew I wanted to continue working in this area.
Over the next 10 years, I worked as a professional graphic designer, UX designer, Art Director, mobile app developer, and an Adjunct Instructor at Northampton Community College. I did not have any formal training in art or design, however, I did have the opportunity to have some great mentors who taught me a lot about professional design and the art world.
In 2005, I was given the opportunity to teach an Intro to Web Design course as an adjunct. This one course made me realize how much I enjoy teaching. This course also lead me to become a full-time temporary instructor in the Art Department at NCC for 2 years. That was a great experience but I wasn’t ready to make academia my full-time career because I had a few entrepreneurial passions that I wanted to pursue. After those 2 years, I joined a tech startup as a CTO and also had a successful consulting business. You can view my portfolio at http://www.markkoberlein.com.
Now, I feel like I have come full circle. In the summer of 2013, I was given the opportunity to teach full-time again as a temporary full-time instructor at NCC for the fall semester. During this semester, I went through the application process for the full-time tenure-track position. I decided I wanted to go back to my passion of teaching and pursue a career in academia. I feel that I am very fortunate to have this opportunity as I’m now starting my first semester in this full-time position at NCC.
That application process also lead me to SCAD. I’m excited about pursuing an MFA in Interactive Design and Game Development. One of the things that I have come to realize over the past 16 years during my college and professional work is my passions and skills fall somewhere in between the creative and the technical. I like to lean towards that area where those two meet. The type of creative work I want to pursue in the future is animated short films, mobile and tablet-based games, and interactive installations.