Announcing the Fall 2016 DE & Graduate Certificate Cohort

17 Nov, 2016

Announcing the Fall 2016 DE & Graduate Certificate Cohort

We are very excited to welcome our newest cohort of Ph.D Designated Emphasis and Graduate Certificate students. From media immersion in virtual reality devices to sound spatialization and tactile sound installations, these students bring an interdisciplinary rigor to their explorations of new media, and we are excited to have them join our community.

Designated Emphasis

Harry Burson

Harry Burson is a second-year Ph.D. student in the Film and Media Department. His research focuses on theories and histories of immersion in media technologies, from the panorama to cinema to the recent wave of virtual reality devices. He is particularly interested in the importance of listening practices in new media and the role that sound plays in the production and apprehension of mediated space. He plans on further investigating the idea of immersion in new media environments, specifically how tropes of sonic immersion, spatial conceptions of the Internet, and notions of media as environment constitute our experience of real and virtual spaces. Before coming to Berkeley, he received an M.A. in English from Georgetown University and a B.A. in English from Truman State University. Harry also has a lifelong interest in recording and creating sound and music, which he continues to pursue along with his research.

Noura Howell

Noura is a PhD student at the UC Berkeley School of Information, advised by Kimiko Ryokai. Her work explores alternative meaning making practices with bodily data through material representations and embodied interactions, such as clothing whose fabric changes color in response to the wearer's physical, mental, or emotional excitement.

Maija Hynninen

Maija is a PhD student in Composition in the Department of Music. She incorporates new media in her work in many different ways. Her main focus is in mixed electro acoustic music where a musician on stage is interacting with live electronics that processes and diffuses sound material the musician is producing live. She's especially interested in the interaction between the musician and electronics as well as sound spatialization and experimenting with different ways of diffusing sound through different kinds of speaker setups. Maija is also working on interactive sound installation where the movement of the audience influences the production and manipulation of sound material. Currently she's experimenting in building her own tactile speaker array as well as a wireless sensor kit that could be used in different kinds of venues from mixed music to dance works and installations.

Malika Imhotep

Malika's introduction to New Media through “Theorizing Popular Culture,” taught by Dr. Gail De Kosnik, deepened her engagement with popular culture and allowed Malika to engage social media as legitimate field of study. From this vantage point Malika was able to rethink concepts at the core of my graduate work and bring them to new relevance. Malika seeks focused access to theory and praxis that she believes will prove useful to her engagement with black femme cultural producers and erotic laborers throughout the Black diaspora. By declaring a DE in New Media, Malika looks forward to furthering these intellectual relationships as well as learning more about digital humanity technologies and creative New Media pedagogy. She is also driven by a desire to see more diversity in the Berkeley Center for New Media (BCNM) and help make BCNM resources accessible to underserved campus demographics.

Molly Nicholas

Molly's background in performing taught her the value of theatrical experiences in today’s technological world, and her work as a programmer has given Molly the skills she needs to leverage technology to create performative designs. Molly believes that prompting laughter and delight in an audience is precious – and creating art is one of the most fundamentally human experiences we can have. She is interested in further developing her familiarity with “historical, social, and cultural” perspectives through the New Media program.


Xingyue Chen

Xingyue is pursuing Master of Architecture degree in College of Environmental Design. Before this, she received Bachelor of Architecture degree in China. On the second year of Master, Xingyue took a gap year and worked in Paris and San Francisco for design practice. During this time, she participated in a lot of Technology related projects and found her interest in integrating design and technology to create human centered design and multidisciplinary interactions. Xingyue hopes she could contribute in more sustainable, human oriented design with knowledge she learnt in CED and new media school.

Chengcheng Huang

As a designer, Chengcheng is interested in humans. Her goal is to meaningfully affect the human experience by playing a part in the formation of perception, feelings and memories through the design of the surroundings. With New Media, Chengcheng plans to explore the position of human beings in between reality and virtuality, and to use different design tools to affect the interactions between human and environment.

Yifei Liu

Yifei Liu has a passion for designing human-centered products and services to tackle social challenges, and leverage new media innovations to engage and empower the public for social good. For the past five years, she worked as a communication specialist at the International Food Policy Research Institute based in Washington, DC. She has a MA in Journalism and Mass Communications at University of Wisconsin-Madison and a BA in Journalism and Mass Communications from Renmin University of China. She is currently pursuing her second Master’s degree in Information Management and Systems at UC Berkeley.

Olivia Ting

Olivia is in the MFA Art Practice program and her previous professional background comes from design. Olivia's work has always crossed disciplines: photography, film, performance, architecture, biology, and technology. Before embarking on the graduate program, she worked for over a decade as a graphic designer and theater projection designer, weaving photography, videos, in a moving montage that fills a space. Olivia is interested in the parallel between interactive design and the neurological functions of the brain how memories are processed, and would like to examine how technology has shaped (or re shaped) our definitions of memories, and how we relate to the boundary between “real” and “virtual” (memories in the form of digital documentation). Olivia is excited to join the New Media program in which she hopes to find a network of like cross disciplinary minds who seek to enrich their definitions from languages outside of their comfort zone.