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Northwestern Professor Uses Grindr to Research How People Use Social Media

By Scotty Stieber

How do we create and manage our identities online? Jeremy Birnholtz, an associate professor within the School of Communication, joined the MSLCE cohort for the first faculty talk of the quarter to discuss his focus on human-computer interaction, particularly with social media. Students learned about the establishment of virtual boundaries and various dialects within the gay dating app Grindr. (more…)

Taking MSLCE on the Road

By Pablo J. Boczkowski, MSLCE Director 

During spring break, students in the Master of Science in Leadership for Creative Enterprises (MSLCE) program participated in our annual trek to a media capital in the United States. Due to the growth of the program, students chose between two different destinations this year: Los Angeles and New York… No site would have been able to host thirty-six students plus staff at once! (more…)

MSLCE Trek Offers Inside Look into the Entertainment Industry


By Zach Hyman

Over spring break, the MSLCE program split in half and sent a cohort to both New York and Los Angeles to see the creative industries up-close and personal. Being interested in the film and television industry, I travelled to Los Angeles, and came away with a much deeper understanding of what it’s like to work in Hollywood. (more…)

MSLCE Professor Researches Globalization by Looking at Opera and Fashion

By Jacob Nelson

Today, we continue our feature where we ask an MSLCE professor three questions about the creative field they work in. Below is a conversation with Claudio Benzecry about globalization, sociology, and high-end fashion.

How did your study of the Colón Opera House lead you to your current project looking at the world of high-end fashion shoes?

My first book, The Opera Fanatic, was an exploration of what it means to love something and started my journey of exploring the subjective as a particular kind of category. Instead of opposing it to what is “objective” I became interested in how it is a particular knowledge form that needs to be studied systematically. So as a follow up to a book that explored in depth the collaborative work of producing the opera fanatic as a peculiar embodiment of taste, instead of the more obvious ethnography of fandom or musical practices, I thought of another subject that is usually conceived as either over-determined with “social” character or as irrational and frivolous: fashion. (more…)

An MMA Curator and a Nonprofit Consultant Talk Museums, Technology, and their Careers

By Jacob Nelson

A curator from the Metropolitan Museum of Modern Art (MMA) spoke with a principal of the consulting firm Danzig & Associates last week during an MSLCE Speaker Series event about the surprising paths their creative careers have taken them on.

Femke Speelberg, the MMA’s Associate Curator of Prints and Drawings, described getting offered her job in the midst of what she thought would be a lifetime of temporary gigs.

“It was something I completely did not plan for,” she said, “I was planning for a future of four months there, six months there, but the capital I accumulated paid off.” (more…)

MSLCE Students Take ‘Informative, Encouraging, and Inspiring’ Trip to NYC

By Hayley Bullock

The MSCLE Trek to the “Big Apple” was informative, encouraging, and inspiring.

Coming from a nonprofit and performance background, I was surprised and appreciative of the vast insight and knowledge I was able to gain from the experience. As we visited branding agencies, including Mother and Ogilvy & Mather, and heard from various alumni speakers including Alex White of Pandora, and Chris Meadows of Facebook, these experiences provided my classmates and me with valuable insight (more…)

MSLCE Students Learn the Importance of Networking on LA Trek

By Sarah Bergeson

Over the course of five days in Los Angeles, my fellow MSLCE students and I had several amazing opportunities to learn about various media industries by speaking to professionals from film/television, music, and talent agencies.

We began our trip by meeting with several Northwestern alumni, led by Marvel Animation Manager Diana Theobald and Tristar Productions Creative Executive Malcolm Gray, who gave us an overview of relocating to LA from Evanston. They happily answered our questions about how Northwestern helped them with the transition and continues to provide them with invaluable resources.


MSLCE Students Learn the Importance of Knowing Your Audience

By Scotty Stieber

Whether you’re planning on starting your own business or working within an existing company, knowing your audience is key.

What kinds of constraints face certain industries, particularly within the fragmented entertainment industry? How are companies working to overcome these often tech-related hurdles? James Webster’s course “Understanding Media Markets: Users, Makers and Metrics” aimed to increase students’ awareness of the complex digital environment we live in today by identifying the role we, as consumers, play in shaping the marketplace for the producers of media and the myriad measurement systems in place that quantify our dynamic, ranging preferences.


Students Meet Professionals from Facebook, Broadway, and MoMA on NYC Trek

By Benjamin Levine

The MSLCE program’s emphasis on networking and broad understanding of the creative industries culminates with the annual trek to one of the major entertainment centers of the country.

Half of the cohort that went to New York City, and met with a wide variety of companies and alumni associated with creative work to see the way these industries thrive in the Big Apple. From selling ancient Greek art to coordinating interactive exhibits at the Museum of Modern art, the trek exposed students to the ways the program’s coursework can be applied to the real world. (more…)

Digging into Business Models

By John Matthew Simon

An idea is only as great as its implementation.

In order to execute an idea, the entrepreneur(s) must have a stratagem that accounts for the infrastructure of the organization, value offered by the service and/or good solicited, who the target customer(s) is, what communication channels will be utilized, finances, and the expected revenue streams visa vie a business plan that is subsequently actualized into a business model.

What happens after this model is applied and when the market changes, as markets can and will do, especially in the creative sector where cultural trends send markets into frenzies each and every year? (more…)