SXTXState is comprised of mass communication graduate students at Texas State University – San Marcos who were competitively selected to participate. Dr. Cindy Royal is the advising faculty member for the project. They’ll be covering the 2013 South By Southwest Interactive Conference in Austin, TX that will be held March 8 – 12. The project is now in its sixth year.
The SXTXState Team
Brittany Black is graduate student at Texas State University in the School of Journalism and Mass Communications where she is focusing on new media. Brittany received her bachelor of arts in journalism and public relations at Baylor University. During this time she gained a wide range of experience through several public relations and communications internships in the non-profit, hospital and franchise fields.
Currently, Brittany works in employee communications, strategy and planning and web development for Hewlett-Packard. Outside of school and work Brittany has a passion for food and maintains a food blog along with several other food-related projects. Twitter – @Britt_Black.
Kiana Fitzgerald is a second-year graduate student at Texas State University, focusing on new media in the School of Journalism and Mass Communication. Kiana graduated summa cum laude from Texas State in August 2011 with a bachelor’s degree in journalism and a minor in photography. As an undergrad, Kiana gained experience as a freelancer for the campus newspaper, the University Star, and for start-up web music zine All Things Lavish. As a photographer, she has had experience with both traditional and digital media formats.
Kiana currently teaches media writing labs for Texas State University, which is giving her great insight into how to communicate effectively and manage a working environment. When she graduates in May 2013, Kiana aspires to work in academia, web development or social media. Twitter – @KianaFitz.
Megan Kilgore is a graduate student, writing instructor and Web designer from Austin, Texas. She studies mass communication and new media at Texas State University-San Marcos. Megan studied English literature at the University of North Texas. She worked in marketing communications for almost four years before returning to school to pursue a Master’s degree.
During the fall and spring, she teaches the lab portion of an undergraduate media writing class. When she’s not working on school work or grading undergraduates’ papers, Megan does freelance Web design and volunteers at the Texas Civil Rights Project, assisting with outreach, media relations and Web and social media strategy for the organization’s Safe Schools Texas program. Twitter – @MeganKilgore84.
Raised in the midwest, Emily is a recent transplant to Austin, Texas. She earned her B.A. in speech communication at Iowa State University and worked her first job at a small nonprofit in Iowa called Quakerdale. Since then Emily has had a passion for helping nonprofits communicate their message through effective and consistent communication strategies. She volunteered as a communications intern at Ronald McDonald Charities of Austin in the spring of 2012 and has since done a few consulting projects for local nonprofits and small businesses.
Emily is in her third semester of the mass communication graduate program. She works for the college as a grad assistant and is the marketing director for a start-up out of Illinois called Oso Technologies. She looks forward to her first time attending SXSW and covering all things entrepreneurial. Twitter - @lyons_emily.
Activist, cancer survivor, and community organizer, Sara Peralta is inspired to improve the quality of life for people in the community. At Agnes Scott College, Sara co-founded the school’s first Latina student organization, advocated for students on the president’s committee on diversity, and was awarded the prestigious Gozuieta Foundation Scholarship, in recognition of her leadership. Sara graduated from Agnes Scott College in 2007 with a bachelor of arts in international relations and a minor in Spanish. Today, Sara is an emerging communications professional in the Central Texas nonprofit community.
As communications manager for the Capital Area Food Bank, Sara leverages new and traditional media to highlight to raise awareness of families and individuals at risk of hunger in Central Texas. She is also a founding committee member of the HIV/AIDS and Aging Symposium, the first such collaboration in Central Texas. Sara is a graduate student in the mass communication program at Texas State University, specializing in strategic communication. At SXSW Interactive, Sara is most excited about panels that feature technology as a tool to to raise awareness of critical community issues and rally support for social causes. Twitter – @sarafperalta.
Cindy Royal is an associate professor in the School of Journalism and Mass Communication at Texas State University in San Marcos where she teaches online and social media topics. The SXTXState project began as part of her graduate Advanced Online Media course and has grown into a nontraditional course of its own. She hosts a music blog and Web talk show at onthatnote.com and a tech blog at tech.cindyroyal.net. She also writes for Texas Music Magazine. Prior to doctoral studies at The University of Texas, Cindy had a career in Marketing at Compaq Computer (now part of Hewlett Packard) in Houston, TX and NCR Corporation in Dayton, OH. Twitter – @CindyRoyal.
Dr. Yang is an assistant professor teaching new media in School of Journalism & Mass Communication at Texas State University. She received her Ph.D. from School of Journalism, University of Texas at Austin in 2010. Yang’s research looks into users’ behaviors and perceptions of different news media and how the online medium competes with traditional news media. Her recent studies, which employed a Web-based survey, looked into how news consumers utilized smartphones as a news platform. As for her teaching career, Yang’s expertise includes Web publishing, photo editing and photo slideshow, video editing, and multimedia reporting. She currently teaches Web Design & Publishing and Web Content Management Systems. Twitter – @jacieyang.
Jon Zmikly graduated from Central Michigan University in 2006 with a bachelor’s degree in broadcast & cinematic arts and a minor in media design, production & technology. After working at two television stations and one radio station in his home state of Michigan, he earned his master’s degree in media studies at Texas State University-San Marcos with a concentration in new media. During that time, he worked as a graduate instructional assistant, teaching Writing for Mass Communication (MC1313) labs and assisting with Television News (MC3312) classes. He also created and produced a variety television show called Studio B, interned at SXSW Interactive, and became the webmaster at San Marcos Community Church. Jon currently works at his church part-time while teaching Web Design and Publishing at the university. He does freelance web work and is the webmaster of the School of Journalism and Mass Communication website. Twitter – @jonzmikly.