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Media, Film & Journalism Studies

Spring 2023

Blog  •

Spring is always a bittersweet time of year for me. I am deep down a very sentimental person. And as much as I love the opportunity to rest a little, plan a little, and (hopefully) research and write a lot over the summer months, I am also sad to see our students leave us. Especially such a talented group of students.

Derrigan Silver

This past year, due to the generous donations of some friends of MFJS, we have made a concerted effort to increase opportunities for our students to submit their work to student award competitions. And this effort has paid off. I am pleased to introduce you to a few of our students who won awards for this this year. Antonia Valez won second place in Regional Excellence in New Videography from the Society of Professional Journalists, and a Future Broadcasters Award from the Colorado Broadcasters Association. Nicole Guzman won the John C. Ensslin Memorial Scholarship from the Denver Foundation and the Damon Runyon Award from the Denver Press Club. Finally, our group of student filmmakers who created “The Bird of Paradise” short last Spring for our Narrative Film Capstone won First Place in the narrative/fiction category from the National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences and a Heartland Emmy award. This team was also helped with promoting their film and with entry fees by the University of Denver Center for Entrepreneurship.

Finally, I’d also like to note our Outstanding Student Award winners. Each year, it is a difficult task for the faculty to choose who to give these awards to. We have so many great students, our faculty vote is inevitably very close. At the undergraduate level, our winners were Debora Rocha, Outstanding Student in Film Studies & Production; Peter Vo, Outstanding Student in Journalism Studies; Lila Ruppe, Outstanding Student in Media Studies; and Lauren Lucca, Outstanding Students in Strategic Communication. Our Graduate Student award winners for Outstanding Graduate Student in International & lntercultural Communication were Rebecca Nzerem and Gwen Battis and our Harold Mendelsohn Graduate Student Award for Outstanding Graduate Student in Media & Public Communication went to Camille Fowler and Albani Berryhill. You’ll find more information about these award winners in this quarter’s newsletter.

We will celebrate these students and many others at our Graduate Student Reception and our InShort Showcase the week of graduation. If you’d like to attend these events, we would love to have you.

I hope you’ll enjoy this quarter’s newsletter, which has been put together by our new communications staff member, Kade Goodchild. In it, you’ll find some great articles featuring our students and faculty. First, is an article on our Journalism and Democracy event that was hosted by Julian Rubenstein, our visiting professor of the Practice of Journalism and Democracy. Julian brought some great guests to campus for a fascinating discussion of the role of journalism in social protests. You’ll also find an article about our annual Margolin and Estlow Events. This year these events featured a host of young voices discussing climate change and journalism. Dr. Lynn Schofield Clark did a great job bringing these speakers to campus in response to her students’ request to “hear about climate change from people our age!” Speaking of Dr. Schofield Clark, you’ll also be able read about her and her work in our Faculty Spotlight. Finally, there is a great article about our Spring Capstone Courses.

As always, if you have any questions about our programs, please reach out to me.


Dr. Derigan Silver


Department of Media, Film and Journalism Studies