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June 26, 2008

New Media Studio Wins 2008 Center of Excellence Award

UMBC's New Media Studio (NMS) has won a prestigious Centers of Excellence Award, presented annually by the New Media Consortium (NMC) during its summer conference.

Pictured L to R: Paul Iwancio, Bill Shewbridge and Aaron Weidele.
At a presentation on Friday, June 13, during the NMC summer conference held at Princeton University, Studio Manager Bill Shewbridge, Video Producer Paul Iwancio and Multimedia Designer Aaron Weidele received the NMC's Centers of Excellence award for the Studio's "leadership in capturing and disseminating digital stories across the institution," according to NMC CEO Larry Johnson.

Patterned after the MacArthur "Genius Grants," recipients of the NMC Centers of Excellence award are nominated and selected anonymously by one's peers. "This is the biggest award a center like ours could receive" says Shewbridge, who has led the Studio since its creation in 2002. "We are very honored."

In recent years, the Studio has partnered with the Center for Digital Storytelling (CDS) in Berkeley, California, to host digital storytelling workshops on campus, as a way to promote and support its use as a form of creative expression as well as a teaching and learning strategy. In fact, the week before receiving the award at Princetown, Shewbridge and his colleagues completed another digital storytelling workshop with CDS staff, and extended the usual three-day program to a five-day "train the trainer" agenda for participants from last year's workshop (click here for a brief video about the workshop process).

In addition, two UMBC instructors (Jason Loviglio and Beverly Bickel) joined Shewbridge in a separate conference presentation on how they used digital storytelling techniques to incorporate visual assignments in their Spring 2008 courses.

In addition to Iwancio and Weidele, other UMBC conference participants who attended the Centers of Excellence award ceremony gathered for a group photo and included (L to R): Adriana Val and Ed Beimfohr (back row); Heather Linville, Polina Vinogradova and Jack Suess (middle row); and Beverly Bickel and Jason Loviglio.
The Studio's 2008 Centers of Excellence award follows a 2007 Telly Award for the Charlestown Digital Stories project, in which Studio staff and UMBC students have helped create more than 30 digital stories from personal photos, memories and scripts developed by Charlestown residents.

This year, UMBC joined the Rochester Institute of Technology as 2008 recipients. Past recipients have included Case Western Reserve, Johns Hopkins, UC Berkeley, UT Austin and the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art.

For more information about digital storytelling at UMBC, visit In addition, an email listserve has been created for announcements, tips and FYIs.


Comments (1)

Jenny O'Grady:

Congratulations! You always do such a wonderful job :)