This month, we sat down with Sarah Brown, the latest addition to The LAMPpost blogging team and student at the CUNY Graduate Center. Look for Sarah’s posts here every other week, with another one coming up this week. In the meantime, check out her previous posts!
First, the classic: What did you do during your summer vacation? My husband and I went to Alaska. It was something we had been planning for a long time. It was pretty much the exact opposite of being in NYC. I read a novel and saw icebergs, eagles, and bears. It was amazing, but it is also good to be home.
How did you decide what you wanted to study in school? Well, I made the not-enormous leap from being a literature student to being an American studies student focusing on copyright. I don’t think there is any such thing as the lone genius with the totally original idea. We all build from one another and copyright restrictions don’t always reflect that reality or encourage cooperative innovation. It bugs me that we all seem to understand that on some level, yet the myth persists and affects how we view ourselves as participants in a creative process. In order to really talk about contemporary copyright I need to know more about new media, so that’s what I am working on.
Why did you want to volunteer with The LAMP? Last spring I interviewed this great young artist and teacher, Jennifer Jacobs. We met to discuss her artwork as part of the research I am doing for my thesis and ended up talking about education. She told me that one of her biggest challenges as a media teacher at Hunter College is convincing her students that technology isn’t just for consumption–-that they can use it to create. That really struck a chord with me. Some time after that I looked online for non-profit media education programs in NYC and here I am.
What are you most looking forward to this school year? As a student, I have a lot of reading ahead of me. I also get to do more interviews which I love because I get to hear people talk about work they are passionate about; it’s very motivating. As someone who works at a college, I am really excited about a website we have put together as a way to make resources for students and teachers in my department more accessible. I hope people will take advantage of it and help us to make it better.
What do you plan to write about on the blog? I wish I knew. So far, I have been going with whatever catches my eye, which can be a bit unwieldy as a strategy. I know that I am always interested in who is being left out of conversations about media. Especially when it comes to new technology, I feel like so much of what you read/hear assumes that everyone has an iPad on their nightstand and a BlackBerry in their pocket. Maybe approaching how the changing landscape of media affects those of us shy of the cutting edge could be a goal of mine. I am also always open to suggestions!