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Max Newfield

Max Newfield
BA Journalism, minor in English, Auburn University

Area(s) of Interest: TV/film, Photography, Video/digital media, Arts/music festivals, Nonprofit work, PR/Marketing

Experience: At CNN, I contributed to documentaries on every topic from North Korea to Justin Bieber but the one that stands out the most was Dr. Sanjay Gupta’s “Weed.” Our team spent a year following the Figi family on their mission to save their daughter, Charlotte, who was suffering horrible seizures. On a human level, it was a relief to see Charlotte find a CBD-based medicine that worked for her. As a journalist, I believe our documentation of her journey, along with Dr. Gupta’s advocacy, changed the national conversation around medical marijuana for the better.

On an even more personal note, I had the opportunity to produce a half-hour special about Atlanta for a travel show called The Southern Weekend. I’ve spent my entire life making suggestions on what to eat, see, and do in Atlanta so the opportunity to broadcast that to a national audience was a real treat. That shoot was the only time I’ve ever ridden my bike to set AND we interviewed a puppet so a few career goals were accomplished that week.

Ideal job in 10 Years: Two of my all-time favorite activities are watching TV and getting lost in the woods so I would like a job that combines both. I would like lead production for a network or brand that creates video content centered around the appreciation and preservation of our natural world. Places like National Geographic and companies like Patagonia create excellent material already but there are so many more stories to tell and not a lot of time to tell them. I would like to use my passion for the outdoors and extensive production experience to amplify those stories.

What led you to enroll in the MSLCE program at Northwestern? I never really pictured myself enrolling in grad school. In both journalism and video production, a lot of job skills are learned in the field as opposed to a classroom. But as I applied for more advanced job positions, I felt like I had some gaps in my skills that were harder to come by on set. Fortunately, a very intuitive algorithm somewhere nudged the MSLCE program my way. The course listing seemed to include all the skills I was hoping to add like marketing strategies and corporate finance. Seeing the organization of the program as well as the success of my coworkers who studied at Northwestern made it an easy decisions to apply. I think being a part of this program will make me a better producer and set me up for success in the leadership positions I want to pursue.

What are you most looking forward to about the MSLCE program? I am excited to connect with and learn from so many new people with experiences different from my own.

If you could have lunch with anyone person (living or dead) who would it be? Julia Child. Her joy is contagious and you have to assume the food would be pretty good too.

Where are you from? Atlanta, Georgia, USA