When one hears the word Comicon, they usually think of comics. However, it is an event that involves much more than that. Essentially, it is a paradise for those who love pop culture- including everything from fantasy fiction to sci-fi television shows. Comicons are held around the world, span two to three days and involve hundreds of booths set up for thousands of patrons. Pittsburgh Comicon was held from Sept. 26-28 this year and boasted a group of very special guests: our own faculty and staff representing the Masters of Humanities program.
Michael Cornelius, director of the English Department and Master of Humanities program, James Butts, Assoc. Director of Online Marketing and Analytics and Billboard Editor-In-Chief Casey Beidel ’13, M.H. ‘15 represented Wilson all three days of the convention. They provided literature about the program to interested visitors.
Dr. Cornelius says, “It was a recruitment trip for the Masters in Humanities program. As the enrollment manager for the masters, I’m in charge of recruitment. So, we went there as a way to connect with people who have an interest in popular culture and the humanities. Our goal was to get our name out there in a different community and market than we usually are in.”
The idea to recruit at Comicon came from Butts and Courtney Wolfe ’12 who proposed it to Dr. Cornelius.
People who attended the convention were interested in a number of things about Wilson, not just the Master’s program. Dr. Cornelius says, “We talked to people about different things, and it’s hard to quantify that, but we talked to several dozen people over the three days that we were there for different reasons.”
The main goal of the event was not to generate interest, and some success occurred on that front. Dr. Cornelius said, “We had 8-10 forms filled out. It doesn’t sound like a lot, but it’s actually really good. Those were people that gave us their contact information, took information and are now actively engaged with my program or sometimes, other programs.”
Overall, Wilson’s trip to Pittsburgh Comicon seems to have been successful. Dr. Cornelius has this to say about the event: “We don’t know. We’re going to sit back and assess, ultimately all the people that we had contact information from. How serious were they? Will they enroll in classes?” He joked a little saying, “If we brought a coffee maker, we would have been the most popular table there.”
For more info on Pittsburgh Comicon, check out pittsburghcomicon.com and for more info on the Masters of Humanities program, check out Wilson.edu.