Costa Mesa, U.S.A. – Emulex Corporation, announced the winners of its ‘Art of Convergence‘ competition Tuesday evening at a gala event held at the Center Club in Costa Mesa, CA. The sculpture-based art competition gave students of California State University, Fullerton (CSUF), the opportunity to design a work of art using recycled IT equipment to illustrate the concept of ‘convergence.’

Emulex donated the parts and gave each student $500 to help construct their piece, which was also a major part of their art curriculum. 23 entries were received and Ryan Kidder, from Irvine, Calif., who graduated this month from CSUF with a Bachelor of Arts degree in advertising with a minor in art, was awarded the top prize of $5,000. The runner-up, Mark Upson, from Orange, Calif., a graduate student working on his Master of Fine Arts degree in sculpture, won $1,000. In addition, Emulex donated $5,000 to the CSUF College of the Arts.

The event was attended by CSUF staff, students and administrators, Emulex executives, and local art critics. The 10 finalist sculptures were determined through online voting by Emulex’s 997 employees, and the winners were selected by a panel of judges which included Dr. Joe Arnold, College of the Arts Dean at CSUF, Emulex President and COO Jeff Benck, Richard Chang, arts and entertainment writer for The Orange County Register, Emulex chairman Paul Folino, Emulex CEO Jim McCluney, Emulex CFO Mike Rockenbach, and Evan Senn, local artist, contributor to Artillery Magazine and arts writer for KCET in Los Angeles.

Emulex also used social networking to identify a ‘People’s Choice’ award recipient, who was determined by voting on the company’s ‘Art of Convergence’ page on Facebook. The ‘People’s Choice’ award also went to Ryan Kidder who won the award and received an iPad.

Videos and photos of the sculptures are available on the ‘Art of Convergence’ website and the event’s Facebook page. The 10 finalist pieces will be displayed in the lobbies of Emulex’s offices worldwide.

“The ‘Art of Convergence’ project is a unique challenge that stretches our students’ abilities because it goes beyond a simple classroom critique to include a competition, a public exhibition of their work, and even prize money,” said Jim Jenkins, Professor of Art and Sculpture at CSUF. “It’s great to have that kind of competitive spirit in the classroom, and encourages the students to take a more professional approach to their work, which will help them in the future.”

“Our goal is to provide the finest education in the arts that we can, and that includes challenging students with opportunities to stretch their creative abilities to new levels,” said Dr. Joseph Arnold, College of the Arts Dean at CSUF. “Emulex’s ‘Art of Convergence’ program is a great example of a challenge that elevates our students’ aspirations beyond the classroom in order to work on a specific theme that is tied directly to a real-world trend, and gives them the opportunity to display their work publicly.”

“The ‘Art of Convergence’ program represents the root of what we are passionate about at Emulex €“ being involved in the community around us and fostering education in sciences, engineering, technology and the arts,” said Jim McCluney, CEO, Emulex. “The students of today will become the engineers, technologists and innovators of the future, so we wanted to encourage the creative process with a program that challenges students and combines art and technology in a meaningful way.”


Image Courtesy of   Emulex Corporation