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Previous Episodes

Spring 2024

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Join Media in the Mix this week as host Grace Ibrahim sparks up a striking conversation with SOC alumn Eddie Leavy about the ins and outs of acting. 

Eddie Leavy is a Haitian-American actor, singer, voiceover artist, and writer based in Los Angeles and New York. With a background in musical theater and penchant for comedy, Eddie is best known for playing “Anthony” on the Lorne Michaels produced sitcom A.P. Bio, which ran for four seasons on NBC and Peacock. Most recently, Eddie appeared on the hit HBOMax comedy series, The Other Two. His other credits include roles on Netflix, Apple TV+, ABC, TruTV, BET, and more. He is also the co-creator and co-host of Peacock’s first ever companion podcast launched by the streamer. Eddie is an avid proponent for intersectionality and inclusion and urges all marginalized people to be the center of their own stories. Eddie is a proud alum of American University. He is represented by Buchwald and Marquee Entertainment.

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Fall 2023

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Join Media in the Mix this week as host and former student-athlete Grace Ibrahim speaks to two SOC Student-Athletes, ⁠Deidre Brown ⁠and ⁠Aidan Delehanty⁠! Aidan is a junior majoring in journalism and political science. Before coming to AU, he was a member of the National Honors Society, a High Honor Roll student with distinction and is now a D1 athelte. He loves reading comic books, collecting sneakers, and collecting swim caps from all the different teams he's swam against.

Deidre Brown is a freshman starting her first year at AU as a D1 Lacrosse player. Before coming to AU, she was a member of the NSPA/JEA Quill and Scroll National Journalism Honors Society, was also DCL All-Star and All-Conference in both field hockey and swimming. She is also an ambassador for Morgan’s Message and co-founded a non-profit lip balm company called ‘Lip Bomb’ in 2023 from which all proceeds go toward Morgan’s Message. She is just starting her journey in the communication division this year. 

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Join Media in the Mix this week as host and SOC mentor Grace Ibrahim speaks to Advacement Coordinator Lindsay Zimnoch and SOC alumna and former mentee Jessical Newell, SOC/MA '22. Listen to this episode to learn what it's like to be a part of the SOC Mentorship Program. Want to know how to make the most out of your mentorship and how to set expectations? Stream now! 

 

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On this episode of Media in the Mix, meet Trace Dominguez, SOC/MA'10. Dominguez is an award-winning science communicator, video producer, content creator, podcaster and researcher. He has written over 1,000 videos for award winning and top ranked Facebook and YouTube channels. He primarily focuses on quantum mechanics, astronomy, psychology, engineering and agriculture. Dominguez produces content for clients including CuriosityStream, Nebula, SMART and PBS Digital Studios. He has collaborated with the Obama White House, The US Air Force, Toyota, Boeing, Skillshare and more. Listen to this episode to hear about how he has also hosted, written and produced for PBS Television, Discovery Channel, Science Channel, TBD Network, Seeker, Amazon Prime, YouTube originals, and other networks across the globe. After checking out this episode, make sure to check out his podcast, That's Absurd Please Elaborate.

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On the 20th episode of Media in the Mix, host Grace Ibrahim is joined by none other than AU superstar, Irina Gilbertson, SOC & SPA/BA'06. Irina is a passionate, strategic marketing executive with over 17 years of experience. Her career has spanned a wide range of industries including consumer and B2B technology, media & entertainment, CPG, alcohol/spirits, financial services, healthcare and pro bono social/political issues she is dedicated to supporting.

This hour-long episode deep dives into the realities of carving your profesional and personal path. From changing majors to interning at places that she never imagined, Irina reflects on her undergrad years, communicating to students how important it is to be okay with not having everything figured out just yet. Grab a notepad, sharpen your pencils and tune into this episode to hone your networking skills and learn some tricks of the trade for resume building.

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This month, we are bringing some of the best episodes back! Host Grace Ibrahim is joined by AU SOC Professor Pallavi Kumar and Isis Amusa, SOC/BA'23,  to talk about eveyrthing SOC3!

Pallavi Kumar is a full-time professor in American University’s School of Communication and faculty director of SOC3. She graduated magna cum laude from American University with a degree in public affairs and public communication. She received her master’s degree in public relations/corporate communications from Georgetown University.

Isis Amusa double-majored in journalism and justice & law. She is a queer Black social justice storyteller working in communications at the National Black Food and Justice Alliance and was a Creative Strategist for SOC3. 

Listen as they talk about what it's like working with DC-based clients and how you can be a part of the next cohort -- and read all about SOC3's one year anniversary!

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On this episode of Media in the Mix, host Grace Ibrahim is joined by alumni David Ruck, SOC/MFA'13 and Grace Eggleston, SOC/MA '21.

"The Erie Situation", was Ruck's idea for a documentary about a Great Lake gone bad after partnering with the Ocean Conservancy to chronicle NOAA’s use of buoys to monitor conditions on the eastern end of the lake, where the blooms migrate after they die, compromising the drinking water in places like Cleveland. One of the engineers who oversees the network of buoys encouraged Ruck to head to Toledo to learn what was causing the yellow tap water in Forest City. Eight months and 110 hours of footage later, Ruck needed an editor. Maggie Burnette Stogner, executive director of SOC’s Center for Environmental Filmmaking, connected him with Grace Eggleston who was looking for a thesis project after COVID yelled “cut” on her film about the threats posed to the Great Lakes by Asian carp. Listen as they work together to navigate a documentary project during COVID!

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Media in the Mix rebrands this fall with a new look, but all of the same great content. On our first episode back this fall, host Grace Ibrahim is joined by R A Sinn, the authors of "A Second Chance for Yesterday." R A Sinn is the pseudonym for siblings Rachel Hope Cleves and Aram Sinnreich — a historian and a futurist collaborating on a time-travel narrative rooted in family dynamics. Throughout the episode, watch and listen as Rachel and Aram talk about the advantage of working on a project with your sibling and the "fractal depth" that the authors are able to create together.

A historian and professor at the University of Victoria, Rachel is the author of three books, Unspeakable: A Life Beyond Sexual Morality (2020), Charity and Sylvia: A Same-Sex Marriage in Early America (2014), and The Reign of Terror in America (2009). Her research has been featured in The Washington Post, The Boston Globe, The Guardian, salon.com and brainpickings.org. Her current nonfiction project is titled “A Sinner’s Guide to Food and Sex in Time.” Professor and chair of Communication Studies at SOC, Aram's work focuses on the intersection of culture, law and technology, with an emphasis on subjects such as emerging media and music. 

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Summer 2023

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In this week’s episode of Media and the Mix, host Grace Ibrahim speaks with VFX expert and SOC alumna (SOC/ MA '15), Anedra Edwards!

Behind every superhero film are teams of visual effects professionals and our own American University School of Communication (AU SOC) alumna and visual effects (VFX) editor Anedra Edwards is one of these VFX creators. With a degree from SOC’s Film and Electronic Media MFA (now MFA in Film and Media Arts) program, Edwards has gone on to contribute her talents to high-profile projects with HBO, Discovery, National Geographic, and more. She has worked on the socially conscious CW drama “Black Lightning,” seasons one through three, before migrating to work at the Marvel Cinematic Universe.  There she has worked on the sequel to “Avengers: Endgame,” “WandaVision," and her VFX team even got nominated for an Oscar for "Black Panther: Wakanda Forever." Her latest project includes "Transformers: Rise of the Beasts."

In this episode, she talks to us all about her VFX journey thus far, industry tips and tricks and her upcoming projects.

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In this week’s episode of Media and the Mix, host Grace Ibrahim sits down with AU SOC Professor Laura Waters Hinson. Alongside being a professor and filmmaker, Laura serves as the division social impact coordinator and director of the Community Voice Lab, which partners American University student filmmakers with DC based nonprofits to produce short films capturing voices of marginalized DC community residents. Laura's films focus on personal journeys, especially among women, exploring themes of reconciliation, human resilience, and entrepreneurship. Through this lens, Laura has worked on various award winning and festival acclaimed documentaries including As We Forgive, Street Reporter, and Project Home.

Tune into this episode as Grace and Laura discuss the ins and outs of documentary filmmaking, how to get creative with B-Roll, funding for independent filmmakers, and Laura’s journey with Community Voice Lab and other American University based organizations and courses.

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Brigid Maher is a tenured associate professor in the School of Communication at American University, a Senior Fellow of the Community Voice Lab at American University, and an award-winning filmmaker focusing on women, from women’s issues in the Middle East to women’s health and beyond. Maher’s latest film is Experimental Curator: The Sally Dixon Story, about a little-known pioneer in the male-dominated art world who transformed experimental cinema by helping film artists make it and the public see and understand it. The film has won numerous awards and is currently screening on the festival circuit. 

Maher is also the founder and Creative Director of the first-ever Anacostia Youth Media Festival, a groundbreaking initiative producing an arts education event led by youth in historically disadvantaged wards of Washington, DC, while also involving our AUSOC students, faculty and staff!

See how you can get involved by visiting the AYMF website HERE!

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On this BONUS episode of Media in the Mix, host Grace Ibrahim is joined by none other than Dean Sam Fulwood III!

Sam Fulwood III is dean of American University’s School of Communication and also a prominent journalist, public policy analyst and author, whose work addresses key issues of media influences on American life. He has written and lectured extensively across the United States and internationally on U.S. race relations, data-driven journalism, and the intersections of media, technology and democracy.

Earlier in his career, Fulwood was a metro columnist at The Plain Dealer in Cleveland, Ohio, the last stop in a nearly three-decade journalism career that featured posts at several metropolitan newspapers. During the 1990s, he was a national correspondent in the Washington, D.C., bureau of the Los Angeles Times, where he contributed to the paper’s Pulitzer Prize-winning coverage of the 1992 Los Angeles riots.

He has also worked as a business editor and state political editor for The Atlanta Journal-Constitution; as an assistant city editor, business reporter, editorial writer, and Johannesburg, South Africa, bureau correspondent for the Baltimore Sun; and as a police, business, and sports reporter at The Charlotte Observer. Fulwood earned a Bachelor's in Journalism from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

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Spring 2023 Episodes

View and listen to all episodes from the Spring 2023 season!

On episode 14 of Media in the Mix, host Grace Ibrahim is joined by AU SOC student and creator of @americanugirldolls on Instagram, Lindsey McCormack. 

McCormack is in her junior year studying Film and Media Arts with a minor in creative writing. Her enthusiasm for American Girl Doll is what started the @americanugirldolls Instagram account, which reimagines the classic toys as American University students. Additionally, Lindsey is a longtime fan of AU Student Media, having been a member of both Amlit and WVAU. After graduation, Lindsey hopes to work in a creative industry creating new and fun projects like she has with @americanugirldolls

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On episode 13 of Media in the Mix, host Grace Ibrahim is joined by AU SOC Professor and Center for Environmental Filmmaking Director, Maggie Burnette Stogner!

Maggie brings over 30 years of filmmaking experience to the Center and to the classroom. During her nine years at National Geographic, she produced, directed and wrote numerous documentaries, and was senior producer of the award-winning weekly programs Explorer and Ultimate Explorer. Her recent films include the award-winning "Upstream, Downriver" (2022), "Unbreathable - The Fight For Healthy Air" (2020), and "In the Executioner's Shadow" (2018), which are distributed by New Day Films. She also directed, produced, and wrote the broadcast documentary "Gold Mountain" (2016) about pioneering Chinese in the West.

She is founder of Blue Bear Films and has an impressive record of creating documentaries as well as immersive media for world-touring cultural exhibitions for National Geographic, the Smithsonian, LucasFilms, and others. Her award-winning work includes two King Tut exhibitions; The Greeks; Real Pirates; Afghanistan: Hidden Treasures; Indiana Jones and Adventure of Archaeology; and Roads of Arabia.

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On episode 12 of Media in the Mix, host Grace Ibrahim is joined by AU SOC Professor Pallavi Kumar and 4th-year student Isis Amusa to talk about eveyrthing SOC3!

Pallavi Kumar is a full-time professor in American University’s School of Communication and faculty director of SOC3. She graduated magna cum laude from American University with a degree in public affairs and public communication. She received her master’s degree in public relations/corporate communications from Georgetown University.

Isis Amusa is a senior at American University double-majoring in journalism and justice & law. She is a queer Black social justice storyteller working in communications at the National Black Food and Justice Alliance and as a Creative Strategist at SOC3. 

Listen as they talk about what it's like working with DC-based clients and how you can be a part of the next cohort-- or read the recap here!

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On episode 11 of Media in the Mix, host Grace Ibrahim is joined by AU SOC Professor Kylos Brannon and Jenny McConnell Frederick of Rorschach Theatre! 

Kyle “Kylos” Brannon is a professor at American University’s School of Communication (SOC) and a reknown VJ, or live video artist. He is currently a company member with Rorschach Theatre and designs video projections for plays, including, 410[gone], Reykjavik, Annie Jump and the Library of Heaven, She Kills Monsters, and The Toxic Avenger Musical. Also with Rorschach Theatre, he is on the creative team for Psychogeographies, a 7-month long storytelling site specific experience that explores DC history, while following an ever-evolving story, which culminates in a live performance.

Jenny McConnell Frederick is a Washington, DC-based director, producer and strong believer in impossible theatre. She is the founder and co-Artistic Director of Rorschach Theatre as well as a member of Rorschach’s groundbreaking Distance Frequencies project. 

Listen as they talk about the intersection of storytelling, community, adventure, and history or read the recap here!

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On episode 10, hear from students! This week your host, Grace Ibrahim, was joined by two current SOC students. Lauren Gersten is a first-year public relations student and Jessica Newell is a graduate student working on her Masters of Strategic Communication. Listen to the newest episode of Media in the Mix to hear Lauren and Jessica talk all things SOC, classes, professional goals, mentorship and falling in love with Washington DC! Read the recap here.

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On episode 9 of Media in the Mix, host Grace Ibrahim is joined by AU SOC adjunct professor and alumna, Gillie Haynes. Haynes is an executive presentation and public speaking coach. She is an accomplished communications expert, professor, author and former journalist with experience in print, broadcast journalism, public relations and social media management. Read the recap here.

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On episode 8 of Media and the Mix, host Grace Ibrahim is joined by Jen Tanner, Vice President of Global Brand Partnerships for RCA Records. Tanner, an alumna of AU SOC, recounts how her time in undergrad paved the way to her current passions, and sheds light on the many opportunities that her 10-year career with RCA has given her. Read the recap here.

Listen now to understand how this fellow eagle made a name for herself in the music indsutry!

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On episode 7, host Grace Ibrahim is joined by American University School of Communication (AU SOC) Photography Professor Leena Jayaswal. Documentary filmmaker, award-winning photographer and director of the new BA in Photography, Jayaswal was the schools' first Inclusion Officer and Associate Dean from 2019-2022.

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Fall 2022 Episodes

View and listen to all episodes from the Fall 2022 season!

On episode 6, host Grace Ibrahim is joined by H Spencer Young, AU alum, artist, director, screenwriter and strategic consultant. Young received his bachelor's degree in Visual Media from the School of Communication as well as a Film Direction Certificate from the Academy of Performance Arts in Prague. He has since gone on to direct, write and consult for companies like Vogue, CBS, Food Network and Nike, along with working for individuals like Beyonce and Mykki Blanco. Read the recap here.

Listen and discover how art can imitate life!

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On episode 5, host Grace Ibrahim, introduces Emily Hall, an SOC alumna and post-production coordinator in Los Angeles. Hall graduated from the Film and Media Arts program and has gone on to work mostly in editing and post-production while maintaining a freelance photography, video, and film business.

Listen now to learn about how Emily decided post-production was the right path for her. Read the recap here.

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On episode 4, host Grace Ibrahim is joined by American University's (AU ) sports communication professor, Matt Winkler. Winkler worked as AU’s Athletic Communications and Sports Information Director and launched the first online M.S. in Sports Analytics & Management at AU as well.

He is the founder and executive director of an annual sports career conference, and also served as an on-site game-day media operations consultant for numerous nationwide athletic leagues. Read the recap here.

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On episode 3, host Grace Ibrahim is joined by SOC Alum, Derek McGinty. McGinty is a journalist, commentator and award-winning interviewer. He got his start at WHUR radio in Washington D.C. and since then has gone on to work for various programs on CBS, HBO, and ABC. He then returned to Washington D.C. to work with WUSA. Read the recap here.

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In this episode, host and AU alumna, Grace Ibrahim sat down with Zachary Gradishar, a recent SOC alum working to break into L.A.’s entertainment industry. Ibrahim and Gradishar discuss the challenges of post-grad life and the power of small plans.

Gradishar graduated with a BA in Public Relations and Strategic Communication in 2022 and has since then launch his own podcast, “Let’s Chat with Zach.” The podcast was originally created as a way for him to stay connected with his network of friends, but he quickly realized that the conversations were relevant to many young graduates starting out on their own. Read the recap here.

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Media in the Mix relaunches this fall semester with its new host, Grace Ibrahim of the SOC Communications and Outreach team. In this first episode, Grace sits down and has a candid conversation with American University School of Communication’s (AU SOC) associate professor and director, Claudia Myers.

Throughout the episode, Myers talks about things that have changed within the film industry, hinting at an increase in overall flexibility thanks to the ability to work remotely. However, Myers makes it a point to mention the disproportionate impact on independent filmmaking in terms of production costs and the risks associated with interruptions to the filmmaking process due to COVID-19. Read the recap here.

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