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College of Arts, Humanities & Social Sciences

Media, Film & Journalism Studies

MFJS Alumni speak at a networking event

Media, Film & Journalism Studies

Alumni

Our graduates pursue a variety of careers in media and communication and use their education, energies, and passions to make a positive difference in the world. Some of our alumni build fulfilling lives and careers right here in Colorado, while others follow their interests to different parts of the world. See what some of our alumni are doing today and find out what they loved most about our programs.

Alumni Profiles

Kathryn Robinson Kathryn Robinson Talks About Her Graduate Experience
Kathryn Robinson, MS in Strategic Communication, 2017
Communications Coordinator, Colorado Ski Country, USA
Kathryn is an environmentalist who loves the outdoors and she wanted to bring these passions into her professional career. A native of Florida, she moved to Denver to pursue a master's degree in Strategic Communication at the University of Denver. During her studies she was a Teaching Assistant in the Department of Media, Film & Journalism Studies. Kathryn graduated in June 2017 and now lives and works in Denver.  Find out more about Kathryn's time at DU

 

Sarah Kolb, MS '17 Sarah Kolb Uses Strategic Communication Skills To Bring Attention To The Arts
Sarah Kolb, MS in Strategic Communication, 2016
Marketing Assistant, Arvada Center for the Arts and Humanities
Social Media and Communications Coordinator for the Athena Project
Sarah Kolb is passionate about social justice and a strong believer in the value of arts and education. Since graduating with a Master's in Strategic Communication in 2016, Sarah has been balancing positions in two different nonprofit organizations in the Denver area. In this interview, she shares some thoughts about her work as a nonprofit communicator and about her experience as a graduate student in the Department of Media, Film and Journalism Studies. Learn how Sarah is making a difference.

 

Adam Mohrbacher, MA '16 Adam Mohrbacher Speaks About his Graduate Student Career
Adam Mohrbacher, MA in Media and Public Communication, 2016
Digital and Social Media Manager, International Association for the Study of Lung Cancer
"I took away many things due to being involved in the Media, Film and Journalism Department at the University of Denver. One of the biggest was a strong understanding of media and communication theory, particularly regarding putting together strategic communications plans, understanding the methodology of persuasion and grappling with the unique challenges of communicating across cultures and nations." Read Adam's Interview with MastersinCommunications.com

 

Carley St. Clair, MS '16 Carley St. Clair Shares Her DU Experience
Carley St. Clair, MA in Media and Public Communication, 2016
Communications Specialist, DaVita Kidney Care
"When considering my graduate program, I wanted a skill set that I could apply across industries and could grow with me throughout my career. When I was assessing programs, I also wanted a small program where I could develop strong relationships with my professors and fellow students. I ultimately decided to enroll at the University of Denver because of its thoughtful approach to instill a strategic approach to communications, small program size and commitment to public service." Read Carley's Interview with MastersinCommunications.com. Carley was also recently featured in the DU Newsroom

 

Michal Varga, MA '16 Michal Varga Speaks About his Graduate Student Career
Michal Varga, MA in Media and Public Communication, 2016
Manager of Creative Services, Hearing Care Solutions. 
"The program's emphasis on combining theoretical and practical skills is obvious from the very first class. The Strategic Communication concentration is structured in a way that classes build upon each other, constantly expanding the theoretical background needed for successful practical implementation of a comprehensive communication strategy." Read Michal's Interview with MastersinCommunications.com

 

Geoff Renstrom, MA '11 Alumnus Geoff Renstrom Opens Public Relations Business
Geoff Renstrom, MS in Strategic Communication, 2011
Owner, Attune Public Relations
Geoff Renstrom moved to Denver from Boise, Idaho to earn a Master's in Strategic Communication from the University of Denver. He landed a job at a top brand consultancy while he was still a graduate student and continued to work in the agency world for eight years. Recently, Geoff has transitioned into a new professional role as owner of Attune Public Relations. In addition to being a versatile PR pro, he is a music buff, an enthusiastic brewer, and a dedicated husband and dad. Read about Geoff's experiences

 

Jane Johnson Revolutionizing Healthy Lifestyles through Strategic Communication
Jane Johnson, MS in Strategic Communication, 2011
Communication & Engagement Leader for Whole Kids Foundation (WKF) and Whole Cities Foundation
"The University of Denver's MFJS school helps provide more than an education; they help students learn HOW to think and analyze the information that they seek. I was encouraged to fully be 'Jane' and pursue areas of studies that were so unique to me, without judgment and with full support." Find out more about Jane's work to help kids eat better

 

Kelly Hill

From Peace Corps to IIC and Beyond
Kelly Hill, MA in International & Intercultural Communication, 2019
Volunteer Services Manager, World Relief Triad
"The IIC program constantly helped me reshape my expectations for the future. While still continuing with my interest in international and intercultural exchange, the program widened my perspective to see how many opportunities are really out there." Read Kelly's thoughts about the IIC program

 

Carolyn Coles

Carolyn Coles Uses IIC and Peace Corps Experience to Create Change
Carolyn Coles, MA in International & Intercultural Communication, 2017
PhD Student, UCLA
"I chose to do my internship with the Denver Police Department. RPCVs have to serve a high needs community and I chose the Black community through policing, an intentionally different approach. I co-created an anti-bias, communication and de-escalation course with the Department." See how Carolyn designed her IIC degree to work toward her goals.  

 

Wendy Lu McGill

A Bug's Life: Running Colorado's First Edible Insect Farm
Wendy Lu McGill, MA in International & Intercultural Communication, 2012
Founder and CEO of Rocky Mountain Micro Ranch
"McGill is fascinated by the sustainability of insect farming and the nutritional impact eating insects can have on people's diets. Crickets can provide much-needed protein, calcium, and iron to an ordinary diet." Read about Wendy Lu and the Rocky Mountain Micro Ranch

 

Loosineh Markarian

Loosineh Markarian Takes IIC to Armenia's Political Sphere
Loosineh Markarian, MA in International & Intercultural Communication, 2009
Manager of Research and Communication, Armenian Mining Legislation Reform Institute
"I still revisit some of the topics I learned in the IIC program. It's been a constant process of unlearning and relearning ever since." See more about Loosineh's path from IIC to a PhD and back to Armenia.

 

Meghan SobelMeghan Sobel Wants to Combat Human Trafficking Through Research
Meghan Sobel, MA in International & Intercultural Communication, 2010 
Assistant Professor at Regis University
"Usually people that go to IIC have a passion for social change and a passion for the world and things happening in the world. They're not content just sitting back and letting things happen, they want to be part of it." Read about Meghan's career fighting human trafficking

 

Hillary Frances

Learning to Understand International Perspectives at Home
Hillary Frances, MA in International & Intercultural Communication, 2009
Instructional Dean of Adult Education and the Language Learning Center at Emily Griffith Technical College
"I realized that there is so much around us, just in our very own city, that is rich in variety and in diversity and culture and challenges my way of living and my way of thinking." Read more about Hillary's work with refugees and immigrants

 

Mark Gudmastad and interviewees for his film Film Makers Strive to Inspire Change in the World
Mark & Ericha Gudmastad, MA in International & Intercultural Communication,2009
Co­-founders, Voxturo Creative
"I feel fortunate to have been in a program where I learned hard skills, discovered how to navigate and better understand the complex and convoluted world of international development, and defined how and where I could contribute." Read about Mark and Ericha's documentary projects after graduation

 

Nicole Eldridge Nicole Eldridge Earns Position with Ellen DeGeneres Show
Nicole Eldridge, BA in Journalism, 2015
Emmy-Winning Associate Producer at the Ellen DeGeneres Show
"I feel like my experiences at DU shaped me as a person," she says. "I feel like because I went to DU and even just the small journalism program that we were in, we got a lot of focus and we got a lot of people rooting for us. And so, I felt that I always had people like professors and classmates always rooting for everyone. Which I thought was really great." See how Nicole found her dream job

 

Sawyer D'Argonne Sawyer D'Argonne Talks about his Path into Journalism
Sawyer D'Argonne, BA in Journalism, 2015
Journalist for Sky Hi News
"People put their stories on your shoulders, and trust you to tell it. That's a big responsibility, especially when you're dealing with sensitive subject matter." Read about Sawyer's experience at DU and beyond

 

 

Cheyenne Michaels, BA '14 Life and Work with Cheyenne Michaels
Cheyenne Michaels, BA in Strategic Communication and Theatre, 2014
Marketing Associate for the Denver Center for the Performing Arts
"I am proud to be a "Jill-of-all-trades" and provide high-quality art, content, and marketing support to theatre organizations and envision myself expanding to other entertainment industries in the future. In all aspects of what I do, I bring detailed focus and dedication." Read Cheyenne's interview with Voyage Denver.

 

 

Vincent De La Torre Headshot Trails of Hope and Terror: Vincent De La Torre Creates Award-Winning Film
Vincent De La Torre, BA in Film Studies & Production, 2013
Filmmaker
"There will be many obstacles in your career path as others tear you down and prevent you from accomplishing your dreams . . . Never stop learning, never stop creating, never stop dreaming."  Read more about Vincent's film.

 

 

Blake Foeman From a BA to an Emmy: Blake Foeman Finds Success at ESPN
Blake Foeman, BA in Journalism, 2013
Emmy-Winning Producer at E:60
Foeman acquired many fundamental skills necessary for his day-to-day life at ESPN during his time at DU. Writing for The Clarion and working in the field for his production classes established a foundation that he still draws from whenever he puts together a script or feature. However, according to Foeman, the most valuable skill he learned at DU was patience. Read about Blake's two Emmy wins on ESPN's CollegeGameDay

 

Frazer Lockhart (BA '11) stands behind a film camera on location Frazer Lockhart: Alumni Award Winner
Frazer Lockhart, BA in Film Studies & Production, 2011
Filmmaker
"I really believe that there is incredible value in a liberal arts education, especially for someone with as many passions as I have." Read about Frazer's contributions to DU and the international film community.

 

 

Connor McGahey Journalism Grad is the Voice of the Denver Broncos
Connor McGahey, BA in Journalism, 2007
Public Address Announcer at the Denver Broncos
"It sounds so clichéd, but usually all you need is a chance." Read about Connor's path to the Broncos

 

 

 

Neave Schmitt Neave Schmitt Talks About Translating a Degree into a Career
Neave Schmitt, BA in Strategic Communication, 2014
Development & Special Events Coordinator at Bridges to Prosperity
"I'm using the skills I learned at DU to develop and implement social media strategy, and also media outreach. My job is to synthesize and communicate the results of our programs, the impact we're making in an understandable way." Find out more about Neave's work with Bridges to Prosperity

 

Megan Westervelt Using Photojournalism to Educate about Cultural & Ecological Conservation in the Amazon
Megan Westervelt, BA in Journalism, 2010
Photojournalist
Megan's advice to current students is to follow your interests: explore passions that may lead you outside your department. "Never believe anything's impossible," she says, laughing. "I had never heard of anyone using a Fulbright for photojournalism, but they accepted my application. . . . Life places things in your path – you have to look for them." Find out more about Megan's work with Waorani communities in the Amazon.

 

Neela Eyunni Alumna Finds Success as an International Journalist
Neela Eyunni, BA in Journalism, 2008
News Anchor, China for China Central Television
"DU is a rare college where the sky really is the limit. The opportunities exist, so it's up to you to make the most of them." Find out about Neela's international career

 

 

Ellie Sue Schafer From DU to the White House: Ellie Sue Schafer Serves as Special Assistant to President Obama
Ellie Sue Schafer, BA in Strategic Communication, 1990
Former Director of the White House Visitors Program
"Be open to opportunities and don't set up your life with blinders because you may miss your true calling." Read more about Ellie Sue Schafer's work at the White House. 

 

 

Alumni in the News

  • Adam MohrbacherMichal Varga, and Carley St. Clair, all graduates of our MA program, were featured by MastersinCommunications.com! Click their names to read their interviews. 
  • Geoff Renstrom (MS '11) and Marisa Pooley (BA '14), both alumni of our strategic communications program, have been elected to the 2018-2019 Board of Directors for the Colorado chapter of the Public Relations Society of America. Read more
  • Christianne Hedtke (BA '04) is a staff writer on Netflix's "The chilling Adventures of Sabrina," a retelling of "Sabrina the Teenage Witch." Find out more about the show.
  • Andy Black (MA '00) is a writer/executive story editor for season 3 of Narcos.
  • Paul Keables (BA '07) is a writer for Seasons 1 and 2 of National Geographic's MARS series. 
  • Jim Danger Gray (BA '03) will be an executive producer for the "Game of Thrones" prequel. Read more.  
  • IIC alumna Maureen (Pacheco) Maycheco (MA '13) has launched a podcast through One K Creative (a creative agency out of Boulder, CO) called Good and Social. The podcast consists of a series of conversations with social and environmental innovators from across industries. Find the podcast on YouTube and on Google Play
  • Alumni Carly Moore (BA '15, Fox21) and Todd Unger (BA '07, WFAA ABC) were featured in the DU Newsroom to celebrate Real News Day. Read more
  • Alumna Nicole Eldridge has been hired as a producer on the Ellen Degeneres Show.  
  • IIC alumna Carly Daelli ('04) is the current president of the Boulder County Bombers flat-track roller derby league. Find out more.  
  • IIC alumna Wendy Lu McGill's edible insect farm was featured in the news. Take a look
  • Alum Darian Brunetti (BA '15) created a short film that was accepted into the Toronto Film Festival. Watch "Sad Songs: A Tiny Lego Musical" here
  • Alumnus Joe Fries (BA '15) received a Colorado Associated Press Editors and Reporters award for one of his articles published in The Durango Herald. His article placed Second in the Sports Story category.
  • IIC alumna Samira Rajabi (MA '10) just completed her PhD at CU Boulder and has been named a PostDoctoral Fellow at the CARGC Center at Annenberg (University of Pennsylvania).
  • Mass Communications alumna Ellie Sue Schafer (BA '90), special assistant to President Barack Obama and director of the White House visitor's office, was named a Champion in the White House in OUT magazine's 100 most influential people/groups of 2016. Read More. 
  • Alumna Danielle Calhoun was featured in DivergeNow for her work with the LAGRANT Foundation. Read the article.