EMAC Capstone Presentations EMAC Graduating Class Spring 2013. Photo by Dean Terry

Terry, Dean. EMAC Graduating Class Spring 2013. 2013. Photograph. Richardson, TX. 1 May 2013.

Behind Box Scores: Better Stats for the Dallas Mavericks and the NBA

Bobby Karalla


Advanced basketball statistics are becoming more prevalent, as baseball statistics have in the past decade, but many fans and analysts alike don't know what these numbers mean. On my website, Behind Box Scores, I discuss what these numbers mean and how we can use them to better understand the difference between stats that indicate a player appears to be good, and those that show he is good.


Bobby is a sports nerd and junkie. He is particularly passionate about basketball. He is also the editor-in-chief of The Mercury, The UT Dallas newspaper. Bobby’s capstone was supervised by Professor Parry.

Celebrate She

Nakoya Moss


I was inspired by a poem called “She” by Kobi Yomada & combined media to illustrate my interpretation of the poem. The female voice is often misunderstood and becomes the minority voice in media. My goal is to build a “women’s-space” that captures the authentic voices of women & allows women to collaborate using media. Ultimately, it will be a community art project to empower women.


Nakoya Moss joined the EMAC Program in Spring of 2010. She currently serves as the Assistant Director of Community Engagement at UT Dallas. Her research has focused on representation of women in media, convergence culture, and remediation. Nakoya’s capstone was supervised by Professor Knight.

The Cash-Money Watch of the Century

Alex Juarez


"What are you doing to monitor your spending?" I pose questions like this to my customers everyday, and it is just as important for me to take care of my finances. Unlike them, I find tools like mint.com and online banking tools to be too passive, so I created a blog to actively monitor and discuss every cent as I spend it.


Alex Juarez is an EMAC senior at UTD. She is absolutely thrilled to be graduating from college. In her spare time, she works as a full-time teller for Wells Fargo Bank, goes to the gym early in the morning, and makes handmade birthday cards. Alex’s capstone was supervised by Professor Parry.

Advanced Mentoring

Joe Posada


I spend a lot of time mentoring students to enhance their high school to college transition. But I found I didn't always have enough time to meet with them all in person as much as they needed, so I started using digital tools to help me. This website is a toolbox of sorts to help share ideas and tutorials about what works best.


Joe, a native of Dallas, is a senior in the EMAC program. For the past two years, he has been a high school mentor with the Department of Community Engagement, and has been able to incorporate his EMAC knowledge into his work as a mentor. After completing a master's degree, he would like to give back to his high school and local community. Joe’s capstone was supervised by Professor Parry.

Paper, Print & Pixels

Janet Montealvo


Paper, Print & Pixels is a blog that offers news and critiques on books and the publishing industry in the digital age. The issues discussed include the impact that digital media has had on the book publishing industry, the rise of ebooks and ereaders, multimedia storytelling, and access to authors, publishers, and agents through social media networks.


Janet Montealvo began the Emerging Media and Communication Graduate program in the Spring of 2011. She is a Secretary/Interactive Communications Assistant at the UT Dallas Callier Center for Communication Disorders. Her research interests include identity and representation in the media, fashion and emerging media, publishing and digital media. Janet’s capstone was supervised by Professor Knight.

The New Path of Asian American Youth

Thi Le


My project is a short documentary film on how new media, in this case, Youtube and Youtube personalities, makes an impact on young Asian Americans identities.


Thi dreamt of becoming a ninja, but did not meet the height requirement. Joking aside, the tl;dr version of how she became an EMAC maTor is that she was under pressure to meet a transfer deadline and chose at random. However, it turned out to be the best decision. There is no tl;dr version of why she thinks EMAC is awesome. There is only the must read version that includes how awesome the program and the people are. i’s capstone was supervised by Professor Knight.

Dallas Dubstep Drops

Rochelle Buquet


Dallas Dubstep Drops is a review website and information resource for the dubstep community in Dallas. The site has two main goals. First, to express the opinions and viewpoints of the author as she immerses herself in Dallas' dubstep scene. Second, to inform the dubstep community through concert and venue reviews, artist highlights, relevant news, and more.


Rochelle wasn't born in Texas, but she got here as fast as she could. She loves the Lord, her family, and her friends. After graduation she plans to travel for a bit, then transition from her internship at a Digital Marketing firm in Dallas to working full-time in the industry. Her dream job would be to someday promote for a concert/event production company out of Boulder, CO. Rochelle’s capstone was supervised by Professor Parry.

Friends of Shaam Online Orphan Sponsorship

Zeena Alkurdi


My project is an online database of children orphaned by the atrocities of Syria's 2-year civil war. Users may sponsor one or more orphans by selecting the orphans from the database. To do this I worked with an existing non-profit organization, Shaam Relief Foundation, based in Dallas.


Zeena Alkurdi is a 23-year-old student, entrepreneur, and online-activist. She uses her knowledge and skill of graphic design, social media, video, and writing to advocate issues that she is passionate about – such as the genocide in Syria, fashion for Muslim women, and rectifying misconceptions about Islam. She has worked as the Director of Marketing and Admissions at a local private school for three years, as well as managing her own online hijab (head scarf) boutique. She lives in Las Colinas with her husband and is expecting their first child in October. Zeena’s capstone was supervised by Professor Kondas.


Kyle Nuss


FutureTrunkMuzik.com is a music website dedicated to the sounds of "future" bass music.


Kyle Nuss is a Northern California native that can usually be found behind 2 turntables and a mixer playing various venues across the metroplex.  After falling in love with mixed media art Kyle transferred to UTD to enroll in the EMAC program to pursue a career in digital media.  Kyle’s capstone was supervised by Professor Parry.

Girl in the Pink Scarf

Mehek Sawani


My project is research on Facebook pages so that page owners can maximize their use and get the highest amount of likes as well as fan engagement. I considered numerous posts with different timing, days, as well as type of posts to figure out what works best.


Mehek is a 20 years old, a blogger, and a social media queen. Mehek’s capstone was supervised by Professor Nazir.

Subculture Kings

Jared Cortez


My project is about helping kids get active and healthy lifestyles.


Jared was born in Grapevine TX and raised in Bishop CA, where he grew up enjoying the outdoors. His junior year of high school he moved back to Texas with his family. He graduated with National Art Honors recognition and went on to college. By refining his interests in art, education, and the outdoors, he is always learning something new and enjoying himself along the way. He hopes to one day become a Brazilian Jiu Jitsu black belt. Jared’s capstone was supervised by Professor Kondas.

Students Desk

Ayaz Ismail


My project is an application and redesign of Zmail with high dynamic features like Calendar, Notes, and Galaxy. I designed this for students at UTD on an iPad platform.

Ayaz is a dj, Singer, Composer, Arranger. Emerging Media and Communication (EMAC) student at UT Dallas. ayazismail.com. Ayaz’s capstone was supervised by Professor Nazir.


Shawn Cho


We are addicted to technology. We just can't leave our smartphones and mobile devices alone for one second. This project looks into our society's technology addiction and dependence. Two people are forced to live four days without their "best friends" while the camera captures their actions and thoughts.


Shawn is an EMAC senior who likes to run around and bang on the drumset. His hobbies include watching kinetic typography, playing sports and listening to Christian music. He writes sports for The Mercury, a UTD student-run newspaper, and hopes to snatch up a job where he will be able to utilize everything he learned at UTD. Shawn’s capstone was supervised by Professor Knight.

Instagram Is

Paul Tellefsen


Instagram Is was birthed out of my desire to see genuine, authentic community, expression and relationship on Instagram. It is a documentary sharing the stories of Instagram users: what Instagram is to them, how they are impacting the Instagram community and, in return, how it is influencing their life, creativity and the community around them.


Paul is a wayfarer, a creative and a dreamer. He is a visual storyteller and shares stories through film, photography and design. Paul has worked with these mediums since he was 12 for his company, technopaul productions. He resides in Texas and works full-time for Gateway Church as the Media Cooridnator for the Young Adults ministry, VII. Follow Paul's adventures on Instagram @technopaul. Paul’s capstone was supervised by Professor Kondas.

Not a Neophyte

Chelsea Upton


Not a Neophyte is a blog that focuses on women and queer musicians. Through analytical posts about presentation, performance, and lyrical content, the blog makes observations about how gender and sexuality are expressed through music.


Chelsea Upton was born in Oklahoma, but nobody's perfect. After deciding to attend college at UTD, she became a college radio Music Director and DJ. Chelsea has written about music for The Dallas Observer, and temporarily ghost-wrote her mom's blog. Chelsea likes r&b, yo-yos, and Jeff Goldblum. Chelsea’s capstone was supervised by Professor Knight.

Evaluating Metrics for Online Communities

Chuck Cage


I catalogued and researched metrics used to measure and predict the health of online communities, placing them in the perspective of the meanings of community and successful community management in terms of the perceptions of various participants and interested parties. I also propose directions for future research.


Chuck is a freelance writer, podcaster, software developer, gamer, garage shop geek, sci-fi/fantasy/comic nerd. He is particularly interested in the science of social networks and the mechanisms driving online communities. Chuck’s capstone was supervised by Professor Shen.

Parenting From A Distance

Lauren Von Eper


Parenting From A Distance is a website with the intention of encouraging positive and creative communication between separated children and family.


Lauren Von Eper is a freelance photographer and graphic designer, graduating with a BA in Emerging Media and Communications, and a minor in Visual Arts. Lauren has focused most of her projects at UTDallas over topics pertaining to separation and social media, and plans to continue her project and research post graduation. Lauren’s capstone was supervised by Professor Knight.

Baking Buddies

Alison Kwong


Baking Buddies is an iPhone app that encourages users to bake with their friends. It is a tool for social gatherings where users work together (bringing ingredients, for example) or just enjoy each other's company.

Alison is from Sugar Land, TX. She currently works as the assistant graphics editor at the school newspaper, The Mercury. Alison’s capstone was supervised by Professor Nazir.

Stagekeepers: An Ethnographic Study of Talent Buyers & Promoters in DFW

Laura Carroll


Talent buyers and promoters are the gatekeepers of stages, venues and public art spaces. Primarily using anonymous interviews for support, Stagekeepers seeks to break down the role of the talent buyer and promoter-- particularly examining how professional identity, background and labor structures may affect the local music scene.


Laura Carroll spent most of her time at UTD focused on college radio and the local independent music scene. She has been a Radio UTD DJ since 2009 and Station Manager since 2011. In her free time she works for start-ups Tactics Digital and Tactics Productions, and enjoys bike riding and yoga. Laura’s capstone was supervised by Professor Famiglietti.


John Langdon


My Capstone project is a website that is based on the creation and sharing of Spotify playlists with a podcast recording of myself introducing each one. The playlists are tagged and categorized according to genre of music allowing the user to easily search the site and are built around unique theme. My goal is to create a simple version of an online radio station.


John is a senior in the EMAC program.His interests while in the program include sound and video production and editing as well as web design principles and practices. John’s capstone was supervised by Professor Parry.

Color Made Visible

Deepti Nerlikar


Color Made Visible is a blog detailing the changing representations of Asian women in mainstream American media over the last few decades.


Deepti has a Master's degree in communication and Journalism and an undergrad degree in English Literature. She has been a Teaching Assistant for EMAC and Arts & Humanities for Fall 21012 and Spring 2013. Deepti’s capstone was supervised by Professor Knight.

Project Linkify

Joseph Denton


My project is a web application that will serve as a meeting center for creative individuals. This will include a user profile, portfolio, messaging system, and following system.


Joe is an energetic and passionate student with a keen interest in web development. He is currently an intern at Cisco Systems, primarily working with the User Experience team. He also works on freelance projects and other fun stuff under the guise of Pinpoint Web Solutions. Joe’s capstone was supervised by Professor Nazir.

Made Beautiful Making Fit

Becky Savelle


I created a fitness and nutrition blog with the purpose of countering the abundance of negative fitness content on the web. The intention is to motivate women to have healthier lifestyle goals while reinforcing the truth that they are already beautiful. The blog allowed me to use my photography, video, social media marketing, web design, and writing skills.


As a senior EMAC major with a minor in visual arts, I am interested in graphic design, photography, and social media marketing. I enjoy soccer, rock climbing, and being outdoors. I love my family, friends, but most of all my Savior, Jesus Christ. I hope to find a career that allows me to pursue my passions as well as influence others in a positive way. Becky’s capstone was supervised by Professor Kondas.

Write That Fanfiction

Karla Yenelie Muñoz


This project was the result of the lack of comprehensive content available for writers of fanfiction throughout the web. While there are many resources available for fiction writers in general, there are many topics specific to this writing form that are seldom touched on. The goal is to provide for this niche.


Karla grew up in South Texas. She obtained a Bachelors of Science in Biology at Texas A&M International University. Her interests took a turn to the digital, and EMAC proved a perfect fit. Karla has an interest in how the digital can provide new opportunities for niche communities. Karla’s capstone was supervised by Professor Knight.

What Humans Can Do: The Ethics of Gestural Interfaces

Laura-Jane Cunningham


I researched the trend technology has taken toward gesture based interfaces and how this new technology poses ethical questions. The greatest question is how movement in these systems affect the disabled community. I will be presenting this research to Dallas designers throughout the rest of 2013 as a call to action for more ethical practices in design.

Laura-Jane is an award winning designer and writer devoted to usable design. She created information graphics for the news industry from 2008 to 2011. Since then, she has focused on making technology more accessible and building mud huts. Her calling is to find simple solutions that don’t cause people to bash their heads against the wall. Laura-Jane’s capstone was supervised by Professor Parry.

Mirror, Media: The African-American Body Image Discrepancy

Christy Terry


Mirror, Media is a blog dedicated to the deeper discussion of African-American body image & its victimization in Western culture due to the reign of an irrational standard of beauty. Also, an interview feature comprised of footage gathered from confabs with five African-American women regarding how they view themselves among the standard, the specifics that influence their view, & how/if that view can be changed.


Christy works as an editor. After graduating she will continue her work as an editor and would someday like to teach digital sociology courses, perhaps at a community college. Christy’s capstone was supervised by Professor Knight.

One Day

Robert David Reedy


The One Day Project is a collaborative artistic research initiative focusing on the ritualization of consumption and the hidden material waste of monetary profits. This project has focused on waste collected from one local food and beverage retail establishment and attempted through artistic representation and web presentation to re-imagine the personal and community interactions between consumption and waste.


Robert David Reedy is an EMAC major at the University of Texas at Dallas and is graduating this spring. Robert has an in-depth background in the Fine Arts and throughout his media studies at UTD Robert has integrated unique artistic and conceptual perspectives into all of his course work. Robert is a strong creative problem solver that thrives on collaborative thinking and group interaction. Robert’s capstone was supervised by Professor Parry.

Senioritis: Making a Pilot

Rafael Alvarez


My project is a web series which chronicles the process behind making a tv or web pilot episode from scratch.


Rafael was born in Mexico City, and lived there until he was 7, when he moved to the US, where he learned English and eventually became a US citizen.  He attended Bishop Lynch high school, where he gained a love for film and writing. He graduated and went on to study RTVF at UNT, where after a semester, he decided to do something broader.  That is when he found the EMAC program at UTD. Rafael’s capstone was supervised by Professor Kondas.