Teaching Assistants

Joe Barden

Office: Bolton 520
Email: jbarden@uwm.edu
Course: JAMS 360 (History of Mass Media)
Education: B.A. in Film Studies, minor in Mass Communications (St. Cloud State University)

Biography: Joe was born in raised in Minnesota and completed his undergraduate degree at St. Cloud State University. His experience as a teaching assistant in the Film Studies department influenced him to seek further education and research opportunities. His primary areas of interest are in exploring film and television history, film theory, and sociopolitical and cultural themes in film and television. In his spare time, Joe enjoys writing both creatively and for a blog dedicated to film reviews and analysis, playing music and discovering new musical acts, and trying out local craft breweries. You might spot him as "that guy" in the movie theater who sits through all of the credits just to see who worked on the film, or wandering lost through the streets of Milwaukee trying to figure out where he is. Stop and give him directions!

Geraud Blanks

Office: Bolton 560
Email: gablanks@uwm.edu
Course: JAMS 201 (Media Writing)
Education: B.A., Media Studies and Africology (UWM)

Biography: Geraud originally enrolled at UWM in 1996, but postponed graduation to pursue a career in music. In 2013, he returned to UWM to complete his Bachelor's Degree in Media Studies and Africology. A veteran of the local arts scene, Geraud has almost 20 years of experience promoting large-scale music and cultural events around the state. He traveled the country managing and producing touring bands and got an Associate's degree in Music and Recording Technology from Madison Media Institute in 2007. His favorite music-related gig was a five-year stint as a contributing music writer for the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel's CUE section and Tapmilwaukee.com. Geraud currently curates the Milwaukee Film Festival's Black Lens film series, which debuted in September 2014.


Danielle Brooks

Office Bolton 528
Email: dbrooks@uwm.edu
Course: JAMS 101 (Introduction to Mass Media)
Education: B.A. Journalism, Advertising, and Media Studies, UW-Milwaukee

Biography: Danielle graduated from UWM with a degree in Journalism, Advertising and Media Studies and is excited to be completing her second year in UWM's Media Studies Graduate program this academic year. Danielle's research interests center on cultural studies, specifically representations of African Americans in entertainment media and civil rights activism. Since earning her B.A., Danielle has worked on several television shows as an extra and has been a wardrobe intern at an entertainment company in Atlanta. During her ample free time, Danielle enjoys blogging, singing with a local ministry called For Your Glory Ministries, and performing in local stage productions.

Sion Choudhury

Office: Bolton 569
Email: sion@uwm.edu
Course: JAMS 360 (History of Mass Media)
Education: MA in English (Jadavpur University)

Biography: Sion grew up in small towns in India, eventually landing up in Kolkata for higher studies. For three years after that, he worked at Pearson Education in Delhi, editing manuscripts for school textbooks and working on (the still somewhat nascent in India) digital education platforms for classrooms.
Growing up in the early years of globalization in India—being the first generation to devour MTV, HBO, ESPN and Cartoon Network—were crucial to his fascination with media, especially pop culture. While his research interests are still not very specific yet, he does enjoy reading up on media history and the role of class in the proliferation of new media in developing countries.
Apart from getting his degree, before leaving the USA, Sion aims to amass a respectable collection of blues music, learn to fly fish and spell the American way and convince Americans at large that soccer should, in fact, be called football.

Sammi Dittloff

Office: Bolton 526
Email: dittlof2@uwm.edu
Course: JAMS 201 (Media Writing)
Education: Bachelor of Arts in Journalism - Strategic Communications, DAC Certificate Recipient, UW-Milwaukee

: Sammi received a B.A. in Journalism from UWM, as well as a Digital Arts and Culture (DAC) Certificate, and is happy to be back in JAMS to pursue her Master’s in Media Studies. She has a few years of advertising experience under her belt as a Senior Marketing Analyst, and enjoys work that combines words and numbers. Her personal interests involve anything related to food, including gardening, cooking, baking and reading about current food issues.

Roger Draeger                                                                 

Office: Bolton 522
Email: draegerr@uwm.edu
Course: JAMS 113 (Internet Culture)
Education: B.A., Advertising and Media Studies (UWM)

Biography: Roger was born and raised in Milwaukee but somehow grew up a Red Sox fan who also loves the Packers.  After graduating Magna Cum Laude from UWM Roger began working in the digital marketing realm. He found it enjoyable, but a passion still existed within him to continue his examination of various media related territories.  Roger is pleased to return to UWM this fall to strengthen his grasp on the areas of study he enjoys.  Roger’s research interests include fandom, participatory culture, paratexts and memory texts.  If anyone wants to see his eyes light up in passionate approval tell him you love the film Rocky, the TV show True Detective and that Radical Face is your favorite band.  When not studying media or grading papers, Roger can be found taking in film and television with Uncle Phil and Willow (his dogs) and enjoying half price sushi on occasional Monday and Tuesday nights at Fujiyama.  He also spends significant time managing and obsessing over his fantasy football teams of which he has 6 this season.

Rachel Kinnard

Office: Bolton 569
Email: rkinnard@uwm.edu
Course: JAMS 360 (History of Mass Media)
Education: B.A., Media Studies & Psychology (UWM)

Biography: Rachel graduated from UW-Milwaukee with degrees in Media Studies and Psychology. Though she grew up in Green Bay, she is not a fan of the Packers. After discovering her love for feminist theory, cultural studies, and news/political media, Rachel decided to continue studying at the graduate level. As an undergrad, Rachel worked for a PR agency in New York, ran her own blog, and wrote for an online girls' magazine. In her spare time, she writes for a feminist news site, attends too many concerts, and practices yoga.

Meg Kohlmann

Office: Bolton 516
Email: kohlman8@uwm.edu
Course: JAMS 101 - Introduction to Mass Media
Education: B.A. in Communications and minor in Studies in Cinema and Media Culture from University of Minnesota-Twin Cities, 2014.

Biography: Meg has returned to Milwaukee after graduating from the University of Minnesota-Twin Cities with a B.A. in Communications. Her time at UMN-TC fostered a passion for feminism, gender representation, pop culture, and media studies. Meg consumes different media, but has a special place in her heart for Young Adult media and its books, TV shows, and movies (probably of books.) She looks forward to combining her interests in the Media Studies program at UWM. In her spare time, Meg likes to write YA, watch practically everything the CW airs, and follow One Direction ironically.

Courtney VanderVeen Mich

Office: Bolton 569
Email: vanderv5@uwm.edu
Course: JAMS 207 Intro to Advertising and Public Relations
Education: B.A., Journalism, Advertising and Media Studies, Digital Arts and Culture Certificate, UW-Milwaukee

Biography: Courtney graduated Magna Cum Laude from the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee with a B.A. in Journalism, Advertising and Media Studies, and a certificate in Digital Arts and Culture. She followed the advertising and public relations track, interned with a local PR agency, and wrote blogs and consulted on social media for a Chicago based landscape architecture firm. As an undergraduate, she coauthored a paper on gender media ownership and its affect on news content with JAMS Lecturer, Dr. Christopher Terry. Their research will be presented at the NCA 100th annual Convention. Courtney's research interests include gender in the media, new media regulation and media law. In her spare time, Courtney enjoys spending time with her family and dog, Dr. Peter Venkman, and crossing books off her never ending reading list.

Daniel Murphy

Office: Bolton 522
Email: murph226@uwm.edu
Course: JAMS 101 Introduction to Mass Media
Education: B.A. in Journalism, second major in History, Indiana University (Bloomington)

Biography: After studying Journalism and History as an undergraduate, Daniel found that the skills he developed would allow him to turn his interest in graphic design from a hobby into a career. From 2002-2014 he worked for the Secretly Label Group, a syndicate of independent record labels. He eventually became the company's Art Director and designed the packaging for over 200 records before he stopped counting. This professional work has led to an academic interest in the historical and cultural roles that graphic design and physical media play in defining how people interact with media. In his free time, he enjoys TV, music and exploring Milwaukee.

Trevor William Shanahan

Office: 526 Bolton
Email: tws@uwm.edu
Course: JAMS 113 (Internet Culture)
Education: B.A., Business/Marketing with minor in Media Studies, UW-Milwaukee

Biography: Trevor grew-up in southeastern Wisconsin pursuing many different academic interests.  He loved video games, but was daunted by the idea of going into computer science and/or learning code.  At the end of his undergraduate study in the Lubar School of Business, he met JAMS faculty and other instructors around campus studying video games.  What great news;video games can be studied!  Trevor has dedicated his post-undergraduate focus on the 8th art (video games) and its corresponding industry and culture.  If there is something you are passionate about, Trevor believes there is a way to study it —follow your passion.

Danielle Stobb

Office: 560 Bolton
Email: ddstobb@uwm.edu
Course: JAMS 201 (Media Writing)
Education: BA,Journalism, Advertising, and Media Studies, certificate in Digital Arts and Culture, UW-Milwaukee.

: Danielle held internships with a television news station in Green Bay and an online magazine in Milwaukee. Some of her work with UWM's PantherVision won first-place awards at regional and state levels. When she's not busy with school, Danielle likes to travel, try her hand at new recipes, and read books that are destined to reach the big screen.

Ryan Sugden

Office: Bolton 526
Email: rcsugden@uwm.edu
Course: JAMS 201: Media Writing
Education: Bachelor of Arts in Journalism-Media Studies, 2014, UW-Milwaukee

Biography: Ryan graduated from UW-Milwaukee with two bachelor's degrees in Journalism and Communication. He knew immediately that he wanted to attend graduate school after finding his passion in gender representations in the media. He's a part-time server to make a living and a part-time blogger to stay sane. During his free time, he likes to preach about his love of Rihanna and reminisce about the Danity Kane break up.


Lindsay Weber

Office: 520 Bolton
Email: weberl@uwm.edu

Course: JAMS 360 (History of Mass Media)
Education: BA, telecommunications, Bowling Green State University (cum laude)

: After finishing her undergrad, Lindsay she moved to Los Angeles to work in the entertainment industry and ultimately began a career as an Extras Casting Director for the company Central Casting. Some of the more popular shows Lindsay worked on include Criminal Minds and Parks and Recreation, but her favorite TV show to work on was Silicon Valley. She decided to return to school to earn her master's in Media Studies and hopes to work in either higher education or in media research.

Emily Wright

Office: 516 Bolton
Email: eawright@uwm.edu
Course: JAMS 101 (Introduction to Mass Media)
Education: B.A., journalism and communication studies, University of Iowa

Biography: Emily is new to the Milwaukee area and loving it. During her time at the University of Iowa she focused on volunteer work and activism with the Women's Resource and Action Center. Emily is passionate about social justice, feminism, pop culture, and ice cream. She spends her free time reading, watching television, and trying to stay up to date on popular culture. She is eager to continue studying media with a focus on gender, sexuality and racial representations.