Alumni Spotlight

Many of our students have gone on to careers in the film and television industry; others are pursuing academic careers teaching film. This page is a work in progress, so if you are a Film Studies alum and we've lost track of you, please drop the Film Studies Coordinator an email about what you're doing.

Taylor Adams graduated in May 2009 and is currently a Raleigh based award-winning writer and producer specializing in program development. He has produced local and regional television programs, had short films screened and won at several film festivals, and is now working on a variety of television and film sets as well as producing and editing web-content for Scrapt Productions. Scrapt Productions is an online channel dedicated to non-fiction, info-tainment coverage of stories and subjects not exposed to mainstream media. You can check out those programs here

Jason Buel completed his MA in 2012. He is currently enrolled in NCSU's Communication, Rhetoric, and Digital Media doctoral program, where he teaches courses in film studies and composition. His dissertation, "Screening Truth to Power: Digital Documentary and Social Justice Work," examines the politics of activist web videos and the networks that circulate them.

Robert Burleson graduated in the spring of ‘05 and started out as a Camera Operator at WRAL-TV in Raleigh before moving to Master Control Operator in ‘06 and then to a Morning Newscast Director in ‘07. After 5 years directing the morning and noon show for WRAL he decided to try something new. In ‘12 he moved to Denver, Colorado to take on the Lead Morning Director for KCNC-TV. There he learned how to direct using automation which after two years led him to the position of Lead Director for the new CBS Network venture of CBSN, CBS's version of a 24 hour cable network. He enjoys living in New York City but knows he will probably end up back in North Carolina some day.

Kevin M. Flanagan (M.A. 2009) is a Visiting Lecturer in Film Studies and English at the University of Pittsburgh. His main research interests include British film and television, arts documentary, adaptation studies, genre, and media history. He received his Ph.D. from Pitt in 2015. In June 2016, he was a Guest Curator at the British Film Institute, where he co-curated the "Architecture on TV" season. Flanagan is editor of Ken Russell: Re-viewing England’s Last Mannerist (2009, Scarecrow Press) and his essays have been published in a number of journals.

Robert Greene (B.A. 2000) is a filmmaker and writer. His latest film, Kate Plays Christine (2016), has won multiple awards, including a Jury Award for Writing at the 2016 Sundance Film Festival. His previous critically acclaimed documentaries include Fake It So Real (2011) and the Gotham Awards-nominated Kati With An I (2010) and Actress (2014). Robert has also worked as a writer and a post-production supervisor. Currently, Robert is the Filmmaker-in-Chief at the Murray Center for Documentary Journalism at the University of Missouri.

David Hambridge is a documentary and commercial filmmaker who graduated with a degree in Film Studies in 2009. Based in downtown Raleigh (, he is currently directing a documentary feature called, “The Last Male Standing” (, a film about the last male northern white rhino in the world and the Kenyan rhino caretakers that protect him 24 hours a day. His work has been featured on a variety of TV and web distribution platforms, and his commercial work has taken him across the world, as well as with grassroot non-profits. His close relationship with NCSU has led to multiple projects within the university, one being an educational documentary called “My Masculinity Helps” (co-produced with NCSU’s Dr. Marc Grimmett) a story about the role of men in sexual violence prevention. This documentary has been screened at universities, festivals, conferences, and in communities all across the US as a tool to educate and inspire. Local magazine Walter has a spotlight on David in their September 2017 issue.

Dante Harper is a filmmaker living in Los Angeles. Dante directed and shot The Delicate Art of the Rifle (1996) at NCSU. After earning his M.F.A. from the School of Visual Arts at UC San Diego in 2005, Dante was invited to the prestigious Sundance Institute to work on Dreamland, his screenplay on the life of Timothy McVeigh. His spec script for what eventually became the Tom Cruise hit Edge of Tomorrow was on the 2010 Black List of screenplays likely to never be produced. As of 2016 he is noted as working on the screenplay for Venom, a Marvel/Sony movie based on the popular comic book character.

Colby Hoke received his BA in Film Studies in 2007 and worked as an assistant editor for Trailblazer Studios. While at Trailblazer, he dubbed for television, organized company archives, and helped edit specials for the Discovery Channel as well as commercials for Travelocity, BB&T, and Audi. Post-graduation, he landed a job at Red Hat and has been there since, making videos for the Brand Communications and Employment Branding teams. In 2014, Colby moved to the Marketing Content team and is a writer and editor, focusing on

Neal Hutcheson is an Emmy award-winning documentary filmmaker whose films have appeared on PBS and The Documentary Channel.  In 2005, Neal was a recipient of a North Carolina Arts Council Fellowship, and three of his films were honored in a special showing in Berlin, Germany in 2006.  He received the Bill Arnold North Carolina Film Award from the Carolina Film and Video Festival in 2008 for The Outlaw Lewis Redmond, and an Emmy in 2009 for The Last One. In 2013, he received a Midsouth Emmy nomination for Coresounders, and in 2015 he and Danica Cullinan received a Midsouth Emmys for First Language.

Tim Kiernan won the John Hope Franklin Fellowship awarded by Full Frame. He started the video department at Capstrat and then the video department of Red Hat. He created his own production company in ‘09 called 521STUDIES. They coordinate with global brands like Citrix, Red Hat, and Lenovo, and small non-profits like the Jaime Kirk Hahn Foundation.

Wes Latta is an editor, cinematographer, and composer. Based in New York, he has worked as Assistant Editor at Ogilvy & Mather. Currently Wes is working as a freelance editor.

Cory Livengood (B.A. 2006) graduated with a double major in Film Studies and Communications. He was a Motion Graphics Designer/Video Editor at Centerline Digital until 2015 when he and Mack Garrison, another NCSU alum, founded Dash Studio, located in Raleigh, and have produced content for companies such as IBM, Lowes, and Red Hat.

Nancy McVittie (M.A. 2008) received her M.A. in English with a concentration in Film Studies from NCSU. In 2013, she received her PhD in Screen Arts and Cultures from the University of Michigan. She is currently a faculty member in the department of Communication, Media & Theatre at Northeastern Illinois University in Chicago, and has been a consultant in the student writing center program for the City Colleges of Chicago since 2013. In September 2016, her first book “Fade to Gray: Aging in American Cinema” (co-authored with Timothy Shary) was released by University of Texas Press.

Russell Mick (B.S. 2000) graduated with a B.S. in Business Administration with a concentration in marketing and also a minor in film. His minor in film ignited his passion for cinematography and motion pictures, which led him to getting his A.S. in Film/Video from Full Sail. He started Running Man Pictures in 2014 when he decided to start building his own brand. The company is based in Tallahassee, FL, but travels all over the south, and most recently have produced works for ESPN and HGTV.

Kieran Moreira (B.A. 2011) In 2012, his debut short film, The Weaver, which he directed and edited, screened at the prestigious Cucalorus Film Festival in Wilmington, NC and won “Best Editing” at the Carrboro Film Festival 2012. Kieran’s most recent film, Harbinger (2014), became a passion project during his time at local Raleigh production studio, Drawbridge Media. Spanning roughly twenty days of production, the film shot in over 17 unique locations across the state of North Carolina. It won “Best Narrative Short ­Drama” at the 2015 Longleaf Film Festival and the “Excellence in Filmmaking” award at the 2014 Carrboro Film Festival. Kieran has worked in the industry for over five years within the corporate, commercial, and ad agency spaces. His assistant editing credits include programming on TLC and UP networks.

Kali Navé (B.A. 2006) graduated with a double major in film studies and mediated communication. She has worked in print, mobile, online, and audio advertising since graduation. She currently lives in Boston and is the Manager of Advertising Operations at PRX for all PRX/Radiotopia podcasts. She records voice-overs, creates short stories and films, and sings in a band called Rocking Horse Rodeo during her free time.

David Orr (B.A. 2010) is currently a production manager at Trailblazer Studios in Raleigh, NC where he works on the DIY series Salvage Dawgs.  Since graduating from NC State with a B.A. in film studies, David has worked in various production roles on commercials, still photo shoots, and television series, which include Lizard Lick Towing (truTV), Los Jets (NuvoTV), and Southern Uncovered with the Lee Brothers (Ovation).

Shayne Pepper (Ph.D. 2011) completed his doctoral work in the CRDM program at NC State. He is currently a faculty member in the Department of Communication, Media, and Theatre at Northeastern Illinois University in Chicago where he teaches courses in film and media studies. His research agenda is at the intersection of popular media, political activism and public service. His work on HBO’s HIV/AIDS programming has appeared in academic journals and edited book collections.

Lauren Pilcher is a PhD candidate in Film and Media Studies at the University of Florida. Their research focuses on non-theatrical and useful cinemas; visual representations of race, gender, and sexuality; and 20th century American media and culture, particularly in the US South. They are currently writing their dissertation which examines representations of the American South in films produced by institutions, organizations, and businesses for instructional and promotional purposes during the post-World War II period.

Tori Pratt (B.A. 2010) graduated with a double major in Film Studies and Media Communication. She is currently working as the Lead Senior Digital Strategist at Atlantic BT, a technology consultancy in Raleigh, NC.

Brian Santana (M.A. 2005) graduated from The George Washington University in 2012 with a PhD in American Studies. He then taught in the Department of Writing and Linguistics at Georgia Southern University from 2012-2015. He is now currently a faculty member in the Department of English and Modern Languages at Shepherd University. He has published on a diverse range of subjects, from 19th century American culture and literature, to contemporary film history, and American visual culture.