EMDD Faculty & Staff

Jennifer George-Palilonis

Director, Center for Emerging Media Design & Development
George & Frances Ball Distinguished Professor of Multimedia Journalism

Dr. Jennifer George-Palilonis is a full professor in Ball State University’s Department of Journalism, and the co-director of the Center for Emerging Media Design & Development. She holds a PhD in Human-Computer Interaction from the Indiana University School of Informatics & Computing. Since 2002, Palilonis has been a media design consultant, both independently and as an affiliate with Garcia Media Group. She has worked on the redesigns of more than 30 newspapers nationwide. She also worked for the Chicago Sun-Times as a news design editor and the Detroit Free Press as a business art director.

Palilonis is also the author of two books, The Multimedia Journalist (Oxford University Press, 2012) and A Practical Guide to Graphics Reporting (Focal Press, 2006). Her research interests include active reading in mobile environments, multimedia storytelling, the use of multimedia as a teaching and learning tool, blended and online learning, mobile design and development, and information graphics.

In 2012, she was  named the Scripps Howard Journalism & Mass Communication Teacher of the Year; and Ball State presented her with the Outstanding Teaching Award. In 2006, she was named the “Young Alumnus of the Year” by the Ball State University Department of Journalism and “Graduate of the Last Decade” by the Ball State University Alumni Association. Prior to becoming the EMDD co-director, she was the coordinator for the nationally recognized journalism graphics sequence and director of the Ball State Digital Publishing Studio.


Kevin Moloney

Assistant Professor, Center for Emerging Media Design & Development

Dr. Kevin Moloney is a transmedia scholar who consults with public and private news organizations on transmedia story design, and has taught transmedia storytelling since 2012. He holds a Ph.D. in Technology, Media and Society from the interdisciplinary ATLAS Institute at the University of Colorado, and an M.A. in Emergent Digital Practices from the University of Denver. For 20 years he was a regular contributor to the New York Times covering the Rocky Mountain region. His images appeared on the Times front page 50 times, and on section fronts hundreds more. He has photographed more than 960 stories for the U.S. newspaper of record. Moloney’s work has also appeared in U.S. News & World Report, Fortune, Life, Time, Stern, The Chicago Tribune, The Independent, USA Today, Elle, Marie Claire, Business Week, the Christian Science Monitor, and National Geographic publications. He was one of two journalists selected as inaugural recipients of the Ford Environmental Journalism Fellowship. For 21 years Moloney was a lecturer of photojournalism at the University of Colorado Boulder. In 2008 his students secured for him the Robin F. Garland Education award, given by the National Press Photographers Association in honor of achievement in photojournalism education. His students are winners of World Press, POYi, Best of Photojournalism, Hearst and CPOY competitions. They have been listed on PDN magazine’s 30 Emerging Photographers lists, and winners of Alicia Patterson, Getty, Inge Morath and Aftermath Project grants. Moloney also has extensive international journalism training experience having taught photojournalism workshops in Argentina, Chile, the Falkland Islands, Myanmar and most recently in Venezuela.

Rojin Vishkaie

Assistant Professor, Center for Emerging Media Design & Development

Dr. Rojin Vishkaie is an Assistant Professor of Emerging Media Design & Development. She received her PhD in Computational Media Design (CMD), with a specialization in Human-Computer Interaction and Interaction Design from the University of Calgary in 2014. Since completing her PhD, she has been a Postdoctoral Fellow that was funded by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and German Federal Ministry of Education and Research, as well as a Lecturer of Industrial Design at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. She also works as a user experience researcher and interaction design consultant.

Vishkaie’s current research focuses on the embodying the interaction between human creativity, particularly in relation to young children’s creativity and emerging digital media. Her other research topics include human-computer interaction, interaction design, design and evaluation of emerging digital media, wearable technology, and design research methodology. In the past she has conducted research that explores gender equality and women’s empowerment in developing countries, as well as the role informatics and new media play to improve and empower the lives of individuals from the most vulnerable sectors of society, including women and child immigrants.

Alex Lukens

Instructor, Center for Emerging Media Design & Development + Digital Media Minor

Lukens earned his Film & Media Studies Masters from Emory University in 2013. He wrote his master’s thesis on the transformative effects of media gimmicks across multiple platforms. He presented a paper at Indiana University in 2012 regarding common trends and tendencies of modern American cinema-goers. Lukens is a lifelong media professional, serving as Multimedia Specialist at Zoo Atlanta from 2011-2013, constructing and maintaining public-facing media content of the organization. He is the co-founder of two media production companies and recently received worldwide distribution for Night Terrors, a feature-length horror anthology film that he co-wrote, produced, and directed.

Most recently, Lukens acted as assistant to several prominent film and television producers and directors, with his name in the credits of such shows as Stranger Things, The Vampire Diaries, A Walk in the Woods, The Fundamentals of Caring, and 2017’s Sleepless.


EMDD Staff

Sarah Janssen

Project Manager, Center for Emerging Media Design & Development

Sarah Janssen worked as a journalist and editor for five years before returning to Ball State University to complete a master’s at the Center for Emerging Media Design and Development. Her creative project explored the use of transmedia storytelling to promote empathy in audiences through the creation of, “We’re Still Here: Stories of the Flint Water Crisis,” a one-woman play and transmedia experience based on interviews conducted with residents of Flint, Michigan. While pursuing her graduate degree, she managed the content strategy and social media for the Ball State University Graduate School in addition to recruiting and assisting with the development and launch of the Graduate School’s Recruiting Ambassador program.

Janssen continues to write on a freelance basis about emerging restaurant concepts and trends in the adult beverage industry.

She’s also a graduate of the Second City Training Center’s sketch comedy writing program and served as the assistant director and co-wrote the sketch comedy show “Thank You, That’s Enough.”