It’s been quite the first year for Scott Piner, director of content and creative services.
“I started on March 2, 2020, and while there was talk about COVID-19, it was in the early stages. On my third Monday, we did a photoshoot at Soldier Field – this was March 16. The next day, the campus closed, and we moved to remote work.”
Luckily, Piner’s creativity flourished despite spending most of his ECC career in the remote environment. In the past year, Piner's creativity has inspired the entire marketing and communications department to new heights. Of course, it should come as no surprise that Piner can conjure creativity in any scenario – he is a professional magician, after all.
Read on to learn more about Piner’s prestidigitation skills, and next time to see him on campus, be sure to ask to pick a card.
In your words, what do you do at ECC? What do you want others to know about your job? Or what would help others understand your job?
I help our team produce creative designs and videos that tell the ECC story to future students and our larger community. My role is to help make sure the design and message are consistent with our brand.
What is your greatest accomplishment since you’ve been at ECC?
Our team has done some outstanding design and video projects, including a virtual new student convocation that we premiered on YouTube and Facebook. But, I think the most significant accomplishment is how we adapted and continued to produce quality work in the virtual environment.
Name a job or role at ECC that you would like to try for one day and explain why.
Academic advisor - I would enjoy the opportunity to listen to students describe their dreams or uncertainties and then aim to provide meaningful feedback and help point them in the right direction.
If you could instantly be an expert in one thing, what would you choose?
What do you enjoy doing outside of work (i.e., hobbies/interests)?
Spending time with my family is number one. I have a passion for writing, and I enjoy sharing poetry. I’m also a professional magician, and I love entertaining others.
If you could live in a TV show, which show would it be and why?
Twilight Zone seems like the most appropriate answer given the year we’ve had!
Where is the best place you’ve traveled to? Or where would you like to visit?
As a child, we vacationed in Colorado, and I spent a summer working on a ranch in the mountains. Ideally, I would love to backpack and explore other mountainous regions.
You have to wear a t-shirt with just one word on it for an entire year. What would that word be, and why?
Joy. It’s my life’s purpose, but sometimes I need a reminder.
Share a fact about you that might surprise people to learn.
Many people know that I’m a magician or find that neat when they learn I have kept with my childhood hobby, but many people might be surprised to learn that I learned magic for three consecutive summers as a teenager at a Magic Camp in Long Island, New York.
What job have you held (besides ECC) that was the most fun, interesting, or difficult? Explain why.
I was the director of youth programs for a professional theatre company around the time of the recession in 2008. The work was rewarding, and I loved the community and people. The recession challenged the growth we were aiming for, and the company closed its doors in the fall of 2009 — at which time I decided to go back to school for my MBA.
Name someone you admire and explain why.
I admire my mom. She has had many challenges in her life and has kept a positive attitude, and is always available for my sisters and me. Her influence is admirable.
What was your most valuable life lesson?
The word or lesson that comes to mind is perseverance. When I think about trials and challenging times, I remind myself we must hold on, keep going, keep looking up, and create something new.
Complete this sentence: “I enjoy working at ECC because … “
I’m reminded we’re all here for a unique reason, to live our purpose and help others live theirs.