Ty Stafford (’11 advertising and speech comm) was a freshman at Iowa State when he started a video blog under the YouTube username IroningMyUnderwear. Ty credits life in his fraternity, Delta Tau Delta, as giving him a structured creative outlet. “I truly feel that another side of me was released while living in Ames,” he says. On his video blog, he told embarrassing stories about himself and ended up building a following of more than 20,000 – giving him a platform to advocate for such organizations as Dance Marathon and helping him get an internship on the TV show “Jimmy Kimmel Live.” Today he makes his home in Los Angeles, Calif., where he continues to explore his creative passions.
So, what are you up to now?
I work for Red Bull as a digital TV/video specialist. Basically I run strategy for Red Bull’s global YouTube channels and other third party video outlets (Netflix, Hulu, Crackle, etc).
How did ISU help lead you to where you are now?
What I have found is that people on the west coast go bananas for Iowa State alumni when it comes to job searching. It’s not just boastful speaking from a proud student; Iowa State is recognized across the U.S. as a hardworking student body. Going to ISU was one of the first things that my current boss was impressed about in my interview. It has also given me the opportunity to mentor other current ISU students who are interested in finding a job out on the west coast who may have thought finding a job out here was too “far-fetched.”
What is your favorite ISU memory?
Wow…That is tough. I feel like pinpointing one specific memory would cheapen my experience as a whole. The overall amount of personal growth both physically and emotionally, the friendships built, and the amazing opportunities and tools ISU gave me to thrive all roll into one dream world of a memory…BUT, if I HAD to choose, it would be winning the finals of Greek Week Karaoke and stripping down to nothing but a speedo in front of thousands of students, that was pretty liberating. You can see the performance here if you like, ha: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xW2_cBHjb18
How do you “live Iowa State” in your everyday life?
Aside from sporting ISU gear on a weekly basis in L.A. and making sure to bring up that I am proudly from Iowa in every new conversation I have, I think it’s the unspoken values that Iowa State taught me that live strongest in me. What I have found through my adventures is that Iowa State truly is a unique student body. I have yet to see a more involved and selfless student body as a whole than at Iowa State. It is with this same selfless attitude that I try to personally live my life by.