Exceptional Alumni: Bernardo Dalla – Gold Winner for Muse Creative Advertising Awards


FIU alumnus, Bernardo Marques Dalla (‘21), since receiving his Master of Science in Mass Communication: Global Strategic Communication has gone on to become an acclaimed creative in the advertising space. Recently, he was awarded the Gold on the Muse Creative Advertising Award for his ad work on promoting a fictional feature for the mobile app, Duolingo, entitled “duelingo.” The campaign centered around inspiring users to learn a new language by singing songs on the app.  

Degree Earned and Year Graduated: Master of Science in Mass Communication: Global Strategic Communication – Creative Track with Miami AdSchool. 

How has FIU helped you get to where you are today in your career? 
FIU creates promising opportunities to learn and grow across the campus. Ranging from the practical and theoretical craft of advertising (specifically in my case to lectures on diverse topics), to work opportunities that give you the necessary professional environment to be your best. I am honored to have worked with the Office of Social Justice & Inclusion to leverage its presence on the campus. 

What path did you take to attain your current career and what inspired you to do so? 
I have chosen the Art Director’s path because I’ve been bringing visual ideas to clients and institutions, varying from design, to video, and storytelling, throughout my life. I decided to go on this path as I see the world in motion and because of the conceptual skills that you develop along the way – bringing ideas and strategies to life with captivating visuals. 

How did your time in the Ratcliffe Art + Design Incubator help you in your career today? 
When I first stumbled into the Incubator’s big red door, I saw a world of opportunities for us students. Being able to join the program allowed me to be in an environment of leadership and practical development. Furthermore, create strategies and be mentored by top professionals that will enable you to find the right tools to make a business work and flourish, from the internal marketing process to communicating with the client and the public. I enhanced a Coworking Business that I founded and created its core internal and external operations – growing its clients and presence among its headquarters. 

What’s been the coolest thing about your job so far? 
Being able to work on the idea level to inspire people, change perception and bring greatness to our lives. Through strategic and cohesive messaging, we learn with so much practice. 

What does a typical day for you look like?  
I start by thinking how thankful I am to be waking up and getting a cup of coffee. Then, I like to start reading an advertising book or learn from past ad campaigns. Afterward, it’s nine already, and it’s time to connect with my coworkers and do my best, be friendly, and enjoy – knowing that we are there to solve problems! Of course, it’s essential to take a break here and there; check out some TED Talks, exercise, relax, and do different things. It challenges your brain. 

How does your job connect back to your coursework? 
My course was specifically designed to pursue a chosen path. With the Art Direction track, we develop ourselves to “get our hands dirty” on the idea and craft side of an agency setting. In other words, we did a lot of thinking, research, design, and making videos with a purpose behind them. 

How did you feel when you got the news of your Gold on the Muse Award win?  
I had such a feeling of belonging and gratitude that made me realize that I am on the right path, no matter how difficult some circumstances were. Great work gets recognized by the industry 

What does this award mean for you? 
This award means that it’s only one step towards a long road. I believe in learning more and applying for more in the future. 

Were there any classes or professors that influenced where you are today? 
Yes, Professor Albena Petrus, who taught Trends in Graphic Design, and Professor Grizelle De Los Reyes, who taught Professional Project/Advertising Creative Strategy, were my main FIU professors who challenged us students to do the research, work, thinking, and to look out for connections in our careers. 

What advice do you have for students interested in a career in Advertising/Communication? 
I encourage all students to create with their passion and always research a reason behind a purpose or a concept. It will unify everything that is being communicated. Read books, watch lectures, and ask people to discover your true path. And, most importantly, start to research advertising ideas. It’s what ties a campaign with an umbrella concept that can be expanded in many ways. There is no limit to big ideas because all we need is cohesion. Are you ready to keep creating? 

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