Podcast: 2018 CMS Alumni Panel

On the heels of the day’s graduate program information session, CMS/W hosted our annual colloquium featuring alumni of the Comparative Media Studies master’s program, discussing their lives from MIT to their careers today.

Nick SeaverAssistant Professor of Anthropology at Tufts University and a 2010 graduate of Comparative Media Studies, is an anthropologist of technology, whose research focuses on the circulation, reproduction, and interpretation of sound. He holds a Ph.D. from the University of California, Irvine. His dissertation research examined the development of algorithmic music recommendation, and at CMS, he wrote a thesis on the history of the player piano.

Colleen Kaman is a user experience strategist at IBM Interactive Experience, skilled in storytelling, user research, learning design, and persuasive technologies. Her expertise is in developing products, services, and campaigns that help users make better decisions and accomplish tasks more effectively and efficiently.

Sean Flynn is the Program Director for the Points North Institute, a Maine-based organization supporting nonfiction storytellers through artist development initiatives and, most prominently, the Camden International Film Festival and Points North Forum. He received his master’s degree in Comparative Media Studies in 2015 and worked as a researcher at the MIT Open Documentary Lab. Sean began his filmmaking career as a producer and cinematographer working on two feature-length documentaries, both of which had their premiere at the Tribeca Film Festival and aired on national television.


About Rachel Thompson

Rachel Thompson earned her bachelor’s degree in Social Anthropology and Comparative Literature from Harvard University. Her honors thesis explored literature’s evolving role in the digital age through an ethnographic study of an online literary magazine. She also co-founded and directed the Harvard Organization for Prison Education and Reform, a network of eight volunteer groups that tutor in prisons across Massachusetts and work on advocacy initiatives relating to mass incarceration and education. Before joining CMS, Rachel worked in Boston-area art museums — the Harvard Art Museums and the Peabody Essex Museum — with a focus on developing teaching curriculum for makerspaces as well as integrated digital media experiences for visitors. At MIT, she worked as a Research Assistant in the Global Media Technologies and Cultures Lab under the direction of Lisa Parks. Thesis: Incomplete Sentences: Exploitation and Empowerment in American Incarceration Media


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