CMI celebrates first birthday

Written By Hannah Walden, Copy Editor

The Center for Media Innovation (CMI) celebrates its one year anniversary on Sept. 13, while the celebration itself landed on Sept. 12.

“I’m really proud of these students and everything that they’ve done,” Director of the CMI Andrew Conte said.

“When the CMI was open, its first start was rocky; we couldn’t broadcast from the space and there were a few tech problems, but I am looking forward to using it,” junior broadcast production and media management major Samuel Morrison said. “Once people got more time using the space, the more it felt like home.”

Recently, the CMI hosted an event with Pulitzer Prize-winning author Dan Fagin and Society of Environmental Journalists’ Rachel Carson on Sept. 7.

On Tuesday, the CMI held a plaque-unveiling followed by a Media Innovation Workshop in honor of the one-year anniversary celebration.

The workshop hosted a panel of media innovators in the Pittsburgh area such as Rob Taylor from New Pittsburgh Courier, Stephanie Backus from Hearst, Frank Murgia and John Chamberlin from Pittsburgh Podcast Network, Don Marinello from 535 Media, Justin Merriman from The American Reportage, Amy Jo Brown from Grant’s Hill and Eric Heyl from Patch.

“The goal of the CMI is working on the future of storytelling of students and challenging the public on what that future looks like,” Conte said. 

According to Chelsea Pompeani, a media innovation specialist at the CMI, there are multiple events that have already been announced for the rest of 2017.  On Sept. 20 and 27, there will be a Trib Total Media Kick-off Party from 5-7 p.m at the CMI. The Trib will be hosting a two-month storytelling course for students and the public looking to sharpen their writing and storytelling skills.

“It’s so much fun putting together so many different events here at the CMI,” Pompeani said. “It’s interesting to hear the ideas from our staff and students as to who they’d like to hear from or see at the Center.”

Tonight, the CMI is holding an event sponsored by the National Press Photographers Association where NPPA Mid-Atlantic Chair and photographer BP Miller will be speaking at 6 p.m.

Students interested in participating in student media events are welcome to join in the CMI and to email Conte and Pompeani with questions and ideas.

Full story and a list of upcoming CMI events can be found at