Course Description: Communication Impact introduces students to the American mass media by exploring various major issues involving the country’s media today. Students become acquainted with the media’s history, power, impact, and economic and ethical dimensions. Much of the course is geared toward students evolving into more thoughtful consumers of the American mass media. Communication Impact extends student understanding and makes connections to a variety of careers in public communication, print journalism, broadcast journalism, film and media arts.
Professor: Sarah Menke-Fish is a full-time professor of film and media arts at American University in Washington, D.C. She is director of the University College and Learning Communities, serves as associate director for the Center for Environmental Filmmaking, launched and directs Discover the World of Communication, a summer program that brings high school students from around the world to AU and U.C. Berkeley for intense, hands-on courses in environmental communication, video production, screen writing and journalism. Prior to American University, Menke-Fish taught briefing skills in government agencies including the DIA, Federal Reserve and Energy. Menke-Fish coordinated Montgomery County Public Schools' Humanities and Communication Magnet Program, an interdisciplinary program for highly gifted and talented students. She has won awards for educational documentaries produced with secondary students, including CINE awards for If You Change Your Mind and Remotely Science, and the Presidential Environmental Youth Award for Trash: What A Waste, a comprehensive look at recycling. In 2012 Menke-Fish received the University Award for Outstanding Teaching. In 2005 she was selected Faculty Member of the Year by the AU Student Confederation and in 2002, she received American University's award for Outstanding Teaching in an Adjunct Position.