What days do I bring my portfolio?
Both days. If you applied for the scholarships drop off your portfolio for scholarship judging on Friday when you check in; the Judges will review it while you’re attending studio tours and you’ll pick it back up after the scholarships are awarded that afternoon. If you choose not to apply for the scholarships a portfolio check-in will be provided so you don’t have to carry it around all day.
Scholarships, you say?
AIGA Minnesota coordinates more than $10,000 in scholarship opportunities for AIGA student members who are registered to attend Portfolio 1-on-1®. Scholarship applications are due on March 25.
- AIGA Minnesota Scholarships: $1,500 (two available)
- AIGA Minnesota Fellow Scholarship: $1,500
- Franke+Fiorella Scholarship: $1,500
- GoKart Labs: $1,500
- Tim Larsen Scholarship: $1,500
- Clockwork Scholarship: $1,500
What time should I arrive?
Please see the Event Schedule. Be sure to give yourself plenty of time for parking so you can arrive on time and, on Friday, check in. (See below for info on parking.)
I’ve registered and received a receipt via email, but haven’t been sent an email with a schedule and more info. When are you sending it?
We won’t be. Please see the Event Schedule for detailed information. When you check in at the conference on Friday, you will receive your specific time slots for your studio tours and portfolio reviews.
Is it possible to get my studio tour or portfolio review schedule ahead of time?
Unfortunately, no. The studio tour and review schedules take a lot of manual labor to produce, which doesn’t allow time for attendees to receive their specific schedules ahead of time.
I can’t attend part of the conference. Can I still attend other parts?
Yes. However, we are unable to prorate any registration fees or provide partial refunds. Be sure to swing by the check-in desk or find a committee member to receive your lanyard—you’ll need it to participate in the conference.
I can’t be there all day on Saturday. Can I be guaranteed to have all of my review sessions in the morning?
Unfortunately, no. Review session times are distributed evenly to all 200 attendees and because of limited volunteer resources, we’re unable to accommodate specific timing requests. Keep in mind that we do offer a first-come-first-served rush line, so if there is an open reviewer you may have a chance to get more than your assigned reviews.
Can I get a refund if I’ve registered but now can’t attend at all?
If you have registered and are unable to attend, refunds are available until March 11th. Email the committee co-chairs by March 11th and we will refund your registration (and give your spot to the next person on the wait list if there is one). After March 11th, we are unable to refund registrations.
Can a friend take my place if I’ve registered but now can’t attend at all?
Unfortunately, no. Because of our limited volunteer resources, all registrations are non-transferable. The person who registers must be the person who attends. See above for information regarding refunds.
Will there be a wait list if the conference sells out?
Yes. Because this conference usually sells out rather quickly, we establish a wait list shortly after registration has reached capacity and publish details about the wait list on the registration page and via our Twitter account. If extra space opens up, we’ll contact people on the wait list, starting with AIGA members who put their name on the list first. Because we have limited volunteer resources, we are unable to reply to requests asking about your position on the list or when we may be able to offer additional registration.
Why would the conference sell out in the first place? Why can’t you just open up more space?
The unique nature of the conference and its valuable 1-on-1 review sessions and intimate studio tours means that our ability to add additional capacity is limited not by physical space, but by volunteer resources. We will contact people on the wait list if, for example, we hear of someone who plans not to attend (see above), or if we’re successful in our ongoing efforts to recruit more qualified volunteers/companies for the various studio tours, workshops, and review sessions.
What should I wear?
Wear whatever you like that makes you feel most comfortable and confident. Keep in mind that you will be surrounding yourself with future employers and co-workers, so represent yourself the way you want them to see you. “Creative workplace casual” is recommended, and be sure to check the weather forecast—you may be walking to some of your studio tours. Our best advice? Check out photographs of last year’s conference to see what people were wearing.
What should I bring?
- Your portfolio (see above)
- It’s never a bad idea to carry business cards, a pen, and a small notebook.
- It can get cold in the main hall, so think about bringing an extra layer like a light sweater.
- During studio tours, there will be a lot of walking and standing so be sure to wear comfortable shoes, dress appropriately for the weather, and think about packing a bottle of water. Bring an umbrella if the forecast calls for rain.
What shouldn’t I bring?
- Keep in mind there is no coat check, so travel light and leave items at home that are unnecessary or expensive (laptops, tablets) unless you need them to show your portfolio and have a bag to keep them secure and comfortably close. Some people choose to put their personal belongings around the edges of the room in the main hall, but we can’t guarantee their security.
- Studio tours have lots of walking and standing, so you don’t want to be carrying much, and if you do, consider keeping it in a messenger bag or backpack.
How should I prepare for my portfolio reviews?
- Get your book together and know your work! You are presenting your portfolio to working professionals and starting to build your professional network. Make sure you are representing yourself and your work the best way you can.
- We hesitate to say any more than that, since a main reason many people attend Portfolio 1-on-1 is to learn how to prepare better, and that’s going to be a unique experience and process for each attendee.
Can I get a list of all the portfolio reviewers with their contact information?
Each reviewer’s name, employer, and biography is printed in the Portfolio 1-on-1 event booklet, which attendees receive when checking in on Friday. To protect the time and privacy of our volunteer reviewers, we do not publish their contact information. However, some reviewers choose to share their business cards on occasion, and attendees are always welcome to give business cards to their reviewers.
One of my reviewers isn’t listed in the booklet. What gives?
Some reviewers ask that their information not be included in the booklet. Other reviewers sign up at the last minute after the booklet has gone to press—we’re lucky to have them!
Why don’t you publish the booklet or the list of portfolio reviewers online?
To protect the time and privacy of our volunteer reviewers, we only distribute their information via a physical printed copy of the booklet which is given exclusively to Portfolio 1-on-1 attendees. One of the many benefits of attending the conference is receiving this exclusive list of reviewers.
Is it okay to send mass emails to all of the folks who volunteered as reviewers?
Absolutely not. Sending a mass email is neither a professional practice nor is it an effective way to personally communicate. Portfolio 1-on-1 reviewers are busy professionals and the last thing they want to do is read an email that isn’t personalized for them.
Is it okay to send an individual email or thank-you card to the specific folks who reviewed my portfolio?
Yes, under the circumstance that you feel they left the door open for follow-up communication. Sending thank-you cards via snail mail is encouraged. Please be professional and respect the time and boundaries of the professionals who volunteered time on a Saturday to review portfolios at the conference.
How do I get to the studios during the studio tours?
We provide bus transportation for studio tours unless they are within walking distance. For walking tours, instructions will be posted at the check-in desk for where to meet your walking group and you’ll be lead by a Portfolio 1-on-1 volunteer. Be sure to wear comfortable shoes and dress appropriately for the weather.
Should faculty members register for Portfolio 1-on-1™?
No. Portfolio 1-on-1 is a conference for design students and only registered attendees may participate in the conference. Design educators are encouraged to register for the Design Education Forum, which takes place in conjunction with Portfolio 1-on-1.
I’m a faculty member and I want to observe portfolio reviews. Can I just be a fly on the wall?
Perhaps, but please understand that the primary objective of Portfolio 1-on-1 is to give students unrestricted, unfiltered, 1-on-1 access to design professionals. Having their faculty members observing them can be quite an unwelcome distraction and, at a certain scale, begins to seriously detract from the atmosphere, intent, and value of the event. (If you’re still really interested in observing, please contact AIGA Minnesota’s Director of Education to request and discuss special access.)
I’m a recent graduate, can I still attend?
In the spirit of keeping this a student portfolio review, attendees must be no more than 10 months out of school.
Where should I park?
This year’s event will be at Mill City Nights, public parking is available in the ABC ramps which are within 3 blocks. Surface lot parking is also available between 5th and 6th Streets on 1st Avenue North. If the light rail is convenient for you, the warehouse district stop is less than a block away.