Alumni Spotlight — Matt Carroll
Matt Carroll, MADAS 2012, is the founder of SuperDeclarative!, a company that provides free Flutter development education, on-site training services, app development services, and consulting services. He’s also the Chief of Flutter Bounty Hunters, a global team of Flutter and Dart developers who work exclusively on open source packages. Before beginning his own business, Matt worked as an app developer and software engineer for nearly nine years, including as a Senior Software Engineer at Google.
In what ways did your Digital Arts and Sciences experience prepare you for your career?
I think my time at Digital Worlds was very different from what I ended up doing for a career. I came from a computer science background before I entered the master’s program. Then I ended up as an app developer. So what I experienced was useful in the sense that I gained a diversity of experience: audio processing knowledge, exposure to video work, and things like that. These days, I am producing videos on YouTube, so using a bit of that audio-video knowledge, but it took a few years to get here.
What do you like about your current career?
Well, recently, I’ve switched my career up a bit. I was an app developer for the better part of eight years, and I still work in that area. But now, I also work on the educational side of things. At the moment, I enjoy that I get to do so many different things. I’m responsible for everything related to what I’m doing right now, so I create graphics, produce videos, create websites, write curriculum, things like that. So I’m enjoying the diversity.
What are some of your favorite memories from when you were in the program?
There weren’t many of us around back then, during my time. For whatever reason, something that sticks out to me was the live shows that we did. It was largely a combination of the work of Brittany Powell, who was a student when I was in the master’s program, and Pat Pagano, who also helped produce and was the official person behind those shows. I just thought it was interesting to see it produced and watch it play out.
What advice would you give to current students?
Get involved with real projects and work as soon as possible. Last time I was in town, I saw that Digital Worlds has gotten heavily involved in the VR (virtual reality) and AR (augmented reality) spaces. So if that’s what students are learning, take that information, build some indie mobile apps, release some mobile games, get a group together, and make a desktop game or an Xbox game. Get out there in the real world while you’re in school because it doesn’t cost you anything, but it’s the only way to make yourself valuable once you get out of school.