Many of our students have gone on to pursue careers in the film and television industry, or in related creative, administrative, or tech-based positions; others are completing secondary degrees or are working in 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 Director an email about what you're doing.
Undergraduate (Arts-Studies Film Majors, English Majors with a Film Concentration, and Minors)
Taylor Adams graduated with a Film Studies B.A. in 2009. He 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.
Clifton Armstrong graduated with a B.A. in Film Studies in 2006 and is now Trailer/ Sizzle Editor for The Intellectual Property Corp in California. He worked as an assistant editor at Trailblazer Studios, AntFarm, and Shed Media Group. Clifton has edited spots for the Carolina Hurricanes, as well as a National Geographic Documentary. You can learn more about Clifton’s work at IMDB.
Nicholas Bambach graduated in 2012 from NCSU with a B.A. in English with Film Concentration (with Honors). Taking a number of undergraduate film courses at NCSU inspired him to pursue an M.A. in Film Studies. He received an M.A. in Film Studies from Ohio University and another M.A. degree in Library Science at East Carolina University. He is now a Library Associate at St. Joseph's College NY Long Island Admissions.
Tyler Borden is a 2011 Film Studies graduate. After working as a PA and travel department manager for the Showtime series Homeland, Tyler joined the International Cinematographer guild in 2014 and worked on the Kate Beckinsale film The Disappointments Room, and the Cinemax series Outcast. Tyler directed a short film, Murder Mill, in 2014, and is currently working as a camera technician for Arri Inc. in Charlotte NC.
Robert Burleson graduated with a major in Film Studies in the spring of 2005 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.
Meredith Caccamo graduated from NCSU with a Film Studies degree with high honors in 2010 and earned an M.F.A. in Film Production (with a concentration in editing) at Chapman University's Dodge College of Film and Media Arts. She is currently working as a trailer editor at The Propeller Group in Beverly Hills.
Liesl Shaffer Clouse graduated with a B.A. in Film Studies in 2006. In the summer of 2007 she was the production coordinator for all of the Sundance Film Festival labs (Directors, Documentary Edit, Theater, Composers, Documentary Composers). She worked for five years for the Full Frame Documentary Festival in Durham, growing from an internship to technical and print traffic coordinator in 2010. Currently, Liesl is a music performer based in Joshua Tree, California.
Aaron Cook is a filmmaker currently based in Los Angeles. He received his B.A. in Film Studies from NCSU in 2014. Since moving to California, he has assisted on projects for Spotify, BTW Productions, and served as an AmeriCorps teaching artist, providing filmmaking instruction to youth in the greater Los Angeles area. He is completing an M.F.A. in Film Directing at the California Institute of the Arts where he has taught a course exploring queer subtexts within American horror cinema. His graduate thesis film Hoosier was released in 2018 and provides an intimate glimpse into queer life in America's heartland. You can find more information about the film here: www.facebook.com/hoosierfilm/.
Jason Curtis graduated with a Film Studies B.A. in 2007. He works as a Freelance Executive Producer based in New York City. He has recently worked on digital, design, event, and video projects for INFINITI, Apple, and PUMA. Prior to going freelance, he held production roles at a range of agencies and studios including JWT, Psyop, Stinkdigital, and Droga5.
Darius Dawson graduated with a Film Studies B.A. in 2012, and later received M.F.A.s from NYU Tisch School of the Arts and the AFI Conservatory for cinematography and directing, respectively. Eventually Darius began full-time DP work at an advertising company in Pennsylvania, working with clients such as Hershey, New Holland, and Geisinger Medical. One of Darius’ commercials aired locally during the Super Bowl, and he also won two Telly awards for branding content cinematography while there for Armstrong Flooring.
John DeMarsico graduated with a Film Studies B.A. in 2009 and is currently the Lead TV Director of SportsNet New York's live coverage of Mets baseball. After graduating, he moved to New York to work as a production assistant and learned to direct baseball under the tutelage of the late broadcast hall-of-famer Bill Webb. John has been nominated for multiple NY Emmy awards for his coverage of the team and has won four. During the baseball offseason, he is also the Lead Director of SNY's coverage of the UConn Huskies women's basketball team. Although he works in TV, he considers film his first love and attributes a lot of his creative success to the foundation his Film Studies degree gave him.
Jenn Dorn graduated with a Films Studies degree in 2004 and is currently working in wedding videography and family photography as a freelancer in her Better ½ studio. Jenn has had a burgeoning career as a Bay-area video producer and editor. Some of her freelance clients include The Bridge School, Stern Grove Festival, and Sourcebooks, Inc who contracted her zombified spoof of eHarmony commercials. Jenn was also Associate Producer and Assistant Editor for the feature documentary Girls Rock!, which opened in almost thirty cities in March 2008 including screenings at the Angelika Film Center in New York and the NuArt Theater in Los Angeles.
K. Sean Finch received a B.A. in Film Studies and Philosophy in 2011. Participating in the Telluride Film Festival Student Fellowship and interning for Skip Elsheimer at A/V Geeks during his studies at NCSU sparked his intense interest of the archival film. K. Sean is currently the Assistant Archivist at A/V Geeks, specializing in digital access and preservation of archival media.
Nathan Gelgud graduated with a B.A. in Film Studies in 2000 and lives in Los Angeles, CA. He is an illustrator and cartoonist, doing work for Penguin Random House, Film Society of Lincoln Center, ESPN, New York Review of Books Classics, and the Paris Review. He recently made movie posters for Kino Lorber and the Metrograph theater. He also makes movie director tote bags that are available at theaters and stores around the country and at the Cinematheque Francaise in Paris. Gelgud's first graphic novel, A House in the Jungle, was released by Koyama Press in the fall of 2018.
Emily Goodwin graduated from NCSU in 2017 with a B.A. in Film Studies and a minor in Art & Design. She has since been teaching Digital Art, including how to make short films, in Mississippi to 8th graders through Teach for America. She has also worked at a non-profit called Griot Arts Inc. where she teaches Digital Art to middle and high school students.
Morrow Gordon After interning for Skip Elsheimer at the "A/V Geeks" educational film archive during his senior year at NCSU and graduating with a Film Studies degree in 2009, Morrow moved to New York City where he continued his passion for film. He and his wife are currently living in North Carolina where they are benefactors and supervisors of the successful Statesville “Full Bloom Film Festival.”
Robert Greene (B.A. 2000) is a filmmaker and writer. Bisbee ‘17, his latest documentary, premiered at Sundance Film Festival, where it was regarded as one of the best of the fest. His previous film, Kate Plays Christine (2016), 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.
Sarah Guy graduated from NCSU with a film studies minor in 2018 and went on to earn her Master's of Library Science from UNC-Chapel Hill. She now enjoys working as the electronic resources librarian at Appalachian State University and lives in Boone, NC.
David Hambridge is an award-winning documentary and commercial filmmaker who graduated with a degree in Film Studies in 2009. Based in downtown Raleigh (davidhambridge.com), he latest documentary is a feature called Kifaru, about the last male northern white rhino in the world and the Kenyan rhino caretakers that protect him 24 hours a day. Kifaru won both the grand jury and audience documentary awards at 2019 Slamdance Film Festival and audience award and ecological film award at 2019 Full Frame Documentary Film Festival. His work has been featured on a variety of TV and web distribution platforms, and his work with grassroots non-profits has taken him across the world.
Kerrie Hayes graduated in 2010 with a degree in Film Studies. She has worked as a Member Service Specialist at the American Institute of CPA's, and continues to work on independent film projects. Kerrie is currently the marketing coordinator at Galloway Ridge, putting some of her degree to use by editing videos for their website and social media.
Colby Hoke received his B.A. 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 redhat.com.
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.
Sophia O. Kenny graduated from NCSU in 2019 with a BA in Film Studies and Political Science. While at NCSU, she attended Full Frame as a fellow in both 2018 and 2019 and produced a handful of short films. She is currently working as a freelance photographer and will be completing her MFA in Filmmaking and Producing at the Seattle Film Institute.
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 2009 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 graduated from NC State in 2010 with a major in Film Studies. He 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 graduated with a double major in Film Studies and Communications in 2006. 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.
Russell Mick graduated with a B.S. in Business Administration with a concentration in marketing and also a minor in Film in 2000. 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 graduated with Film Studies degree in 2011. In 2012, his debut short film,The Weaver screened at the Cucalorus Film Festival in Wilmington, NC and won “Best Editing” at the Carrboro Film Festival. Kieran’s award-winning film, Harbinger (2014), became a passion project during his time at local Raleigh production studio, Drawbridge Media. In early 2018, Kieran founded Negative Split Films, LLC as a platform for him and other local filmmakers to tell stories. Kieran's professional work includes assistant editing credits for the 2018 Tribeca Film Festival pick, Maine, and programming on TLC and UP networks. He currently works as a senior filmmaker on Red Hat's internal creative agency in Raleigh, NC.
Kali Navé graduated with a double major in Film Studies and Mediated Communication in 2006. 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.
Nicole Opyr graduated with a Film Studies degree in 2005. She is an editor, and has worked on various web series, including Pretty: The Series; the Havana Film Festival award winning documentary The Man of Two Havanas; and the Discovery Channel series Surviving Alaska. She is currently a promo and marketing editor for Fox Broadcast TV in Los Angeles.
Caryll Orejola graduated from NCSU in 2016 with a B.A. in Film Studies. She is currently a preschool teacher, and working on an MAT in Elementary Education at NCSU.
David Orr graduated with a B.A. in Film Studies in 2010. He is currently a coordinating producer at Figure 8 Films in Carrboro, NC where he works on the UPtv series Bringing Up Bates and Sister Wives (TLC). David has worked in various production roles on commercials, still photo shoots, and television series, which include Salvage Dawgs (DIY Network), Lizard Lick Towing (truTV), Los Jets (NuvoTV), and Southern Uncovered with the Lee Brothers (Ovation).
Tori Pratt graduated with a double major in Film Studies and Media Communication in 2010. She is currently working as the Lead Senior Digital Strategist at Atlantic BT, a technology consultancy in Raleigh, NC.
After graduating from NC State with a Film Degree in 1990, Tor Ramsey took the independent route, with a brief stopover at NYU, prior to his first feature film as Writer-Director, the 35mm Urban Mythology. Moving to Los Angeles in 1998, Ramsey found his way into the sketch comedy world producing and directing comedy sketches for E! Entertainment's "Talk Soup" before Directing and writing comedy pilot "The White Chick and the Haole Crew," then getting hired to direct the Artisan Picture Children of the Living Dead. He returned to North Carolina to produce and direct the documentary Running with the Pack: A Complete History of NC State Basketball and The Rookie’s Record, a documentary on the Bonneville Speed week. He returned to dramatic storytelling with his most recent feature, the romantic comedy anthology, Raleigh, I Kinda Like You and continues to develop dramatic pieces for digital platforms.
Meghan Balfrey Rushing graduated with B.A.s in Communication and Film Studies in 2008. Currently, she is the Public Relations Specialist for the Office of Undergraduate Admissions at Duke University in Durham, NC. She is also a freelance photographer, graphic designer, and brand strategist.
Donna Salberg earned her degree in Film Studies in 2015. Since graduation, she has gained invaluable experience freelancing as an assistant producer, production coordinator, and production manager. She also worked at the prestigious Creative Artist Agency (CAA). Currently, Donna works as a creative at the Emmy and Oscar-nominated company, Meralta Films. They have exciting projects for major brands such as HBO, Apple, Hulu, Amazon, MTV, and Netflix
Patrick Shanahan graduated in 2010 with a Film Studies B.A. degree, and formed a production company in Raleigh, Minds of the Independent Screen, whose mission is to use film stock rather than digital formats. Patrick produced, wrote, directed, and edited a feature-length film, The Carolinian, and a short film, Soleil, both on super 16mm using Arriflex film cameras. Most recently, Patrick has finished a feature film titled Crash Blossom, which was released in 2018.
Cole Smith graduated from NCSU in May of 2018 with a major in Film Studies. He completed his M.F.A. in Film Production at Florida State University’s Film School. In 2019, he directed the film Expecting.
Graduate (MA English-Film and PhD/CRDM)
Katreena Alder is a doctoral candidate in the PhD program in Communication, Rhetoric, and Digital Media at North Carolina State University with research interests in Black Film and Media Studies. During her time at NC State she taught courses in International and Cross-Cultural Communication, Introduction to Film Studies, and Public Speaking. She is a Teaching Fellow at Augustana College.
Tiya Bolton (M.A. 2020) devoted her NCSU thesis to the relationship between contemporary Black cinema and the shifting landscape of Black digital fandom. Broadly, her work focuses on Black cinema, spectatorship, Black digital culture, and digital fan practice. She began her PhD in Cinema and Media Studies at the University of Chicago in September 2020.
Jason Buel (M.A. 2012) is an Assistant Professor of Communication at North Carolina Wesleyan College in Rocky Mount, NC. His research focuses on the intersections between technology, politics, and documentary media. In 2017, he earned his PhD in Communication, Rhetoric, and Digital Media at NC State. His dissertation is titled “Whose Screens? Our Screens! Digital Documentary and Social Activism.” His article, "Assembling the Living Archive: A Media-Archaeological Excavation of Occupy Wall Street" appeared in Public Culture 30.2 in 2018.
Rob Caldwell (M.A. 2005) is currently working as an Instructional & Information Designer at NC School of Science and Math to design and share instructional materials for enriching education. He is interested in technology, education, and gaming, but especially where these three intersect. He has taught courses in film and literature, worked in film and television production, graphic design and photography.
Mariana Colín (M.A. 2019) produced her NCSU thesis on alternative forms of academic publishing, and took the form of a YouTube channel called “The Morbid Zoo”, comprised of video essays that analyze different movie monsters, which she continues to update. She began her PhD at the University of Illinois at Urbana Champaign Institute of Communications Research in summer 2019 as a Summer Predoctoral Institute Fellow, and continue in the fall as a Graduate College Fellow.
Zach Finch (M.A. 2010) earned his Ph.D in English-Media, Cinema and Digital Studies at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee in 2017 where he is now an Associate Lecturer and Academic Advisor for the Film Studies program. He is the co-editor of Directory of World Cinema: Scotland (Intellect, 2015) with Dr. Bob Nowlan.
Kevin M. Flanagan (M.A. 2009) received his Ph.D. from the University of Pittsburgh in 2015 and is currently Term Assistant Professor of English at George Mason University. 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). His book, War Representation in British Cinema and Television: From Suez to Thatcher, and Beyond, is under contract with Palgrave (part of the “Britain and the World”series).
Adam Hebert (M.A. 2015) holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Cinematography from Emerson College and a Master of Arts degree in Film Studies and English from North Carolina State University. In between these endeavors he worked as a freelance cinematographer and digital content pre-mastering technician in the Hollywood environs. His research interests include visual rhetoric in the war film, questions of influence and intertextuality, skateboard culture and its image making, and the so-called “transcendental” style of cinema. Adam is currently pursuing a PhD in Film Studies from the University of Pittsburgh.
Susie Hedley (MA 2021) focused on puppetry in experimental stop-motion films for her thesis, in which she explored the anima of objects on-screen. Her current interests are feminist theory, materiality, and nonhumand and human bodies. In August 2021 she began her PhD in NC State's Communication, Rhetoric, & Digital Media (CRDM) program.
Darya Levchenko (M.A. 2019) is a Fulbright Fellow from Ukraine. Her work focuses on science fiction, depictions of AI on-screen, intermedia and interdisciplinary studies, foreign cinema distribution in the U.S., education innovations, and film festival studies. After graduating from NC State with her MA capstone on genre film festivals, she took a position of Assistant Film Programmer at AFI Silver Theatre and Cultural Center in Washington, DC. Darya’s research website.
Nancy McVittie (M.A. 2008). 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.
Travis R. Merchant-Knudsen (M.A. 2020) compared the films Mandy (2019) and Climax (2019) for their thesis as they explored how the narratives reflect the experiences of the characters to elicit a sense of boundless time within an altered space created by psychedelics through visual-effects and dancing bodies. Their writings have been published in Southeast Asian Review of English, Language, Literature, and Interdisciplinary Studies (LLIDS) and Film International. Travis joined NC State’s CRDM program as a PhD student in the fall of 2021.
Josh Peery (M.A. 2009). While working on his graduate work Josh was hired by Icarus Studios, a Cary, NC video game company as a writer and designer. Josh has worked in the video game industry for several firms since ‘07 and has launched AAA and indie video game titles. Along the way Josh has had journal articles published and he wrote a chapter in the textbook PLAY/WRITE on video game writing. Josh currently works for East Carolina University designing Serious Games for health sciences education.
Lauren Pilcher (M.A. 2013) earned their PhD in Film and Media Studies at the University of Florida. Their work focuses on documentary and nontheatrical film and media with an emphasis on social identity and the American South. They teach courses in film and media and composition at Georgia College. They have forthcoming publications on race and gender in government films produced in midcentury Georgia in The Journal of Cinema and Media Studies and on nontheatrical films in the Oxford Handbook of Queer Cinema.
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.
Julia Wray graduated from NC State in 2022 with an M.A. in English with a concentration in Film Studies. Her primary areas of study are feminist film theory, genre studies, and adaptation studies. Her master’s capstone centered around an emerging subgenre of road trip films that focused on young women seeking accessible contraception in the US. After working at Barnes and Noble for almost two years, Julia has recently begun a position as an Assistant Content Editor for Oxford University Press.