Coastal Maine at College of the Atlantic, Bar Harbor, Maine
Katina Paron is the director of the Institute for Environmental Journalism and the lead instructor for the Maine session. She is a journalism educator and editor, who has helped thousands of teens earn bylines in professional publications. From "Since Parkland" to workshops on editing and newswriting, her work elevates the voices and experiences of young people and provides journalism training and mentorship to teens. She is the author of "A NewsHound's Guide to Student Journalism" and runs the Instagram channel @DearTeenJournalist. Her articles on scholastic journalism have appeared in the New York Times and WNYC. Find her on Twitter: @katinaparon
Laura Poppick is a freelance science and environmental journalist based in Portland, Maine. Her work has appeared in Scientific American, Wired, Audubon and elsewhere. She holds a bachelor's degree in geology from Bates College and a graduate degree in science communication from the University of California, Santa Cruz. She has taught science writing lectures and workshops at Bates College since 2017.
New York City at The New School, New York, New York
Mary Ellen Walsh
Mary Ellen Walsh is the lead instructor for the NYC session. She is an award-winning writer published in Newsday, New York Daily News, LI Pulse, Long Island Press, Scary Mommy and elsewhere. Her Patch.com "MEWsings" column won awards from the Society of Professional Journalists. She spent a decade in New York City public relations agencies writing for major brands. Walsh holds a BA in Literature and Publishing Studies from Hofstra University and an MFA in Creative Writing and Literature from Stony Brook Southampton. Walsh helps clients write novels and non-fiction books. She teaches writing at various universities and mentors high school students to help perfect their craft.
Sandya Viswanathan, a scientist-turned-filmmaker, has spent more than a decade utilizing her unique understanding of the scientific process to tell compelling stories. She has written and directed documentary films for a wide variety of clients, including National Geographic Studios, PBS, and the American Museum of Natural History.
Our Maine and NYC Mentors
Theresa Braine has reported from places as varied as Connecticut, where she got her start at local newspapers, to Mexico, where she freelanced for numerous publications. She also served as the Environment and Canada Editor at Indian Country Media Network, assigning, editing and writing stories about environmental issues such as the Dakota Access Pipeline conflict. She's currently a staff writer at The New York Daily News.
Blake Cass holds a B.A. in English from Connecticut College B.A. and an M.Phil from College of the Atlantic. Maine-born, he taught high school English at The Bishop's School in La Jolla, California. His fiction has been published in Santa Monica Review and is forthcoming in Cream City Review. He has reported for The Mount Desert Islander and writes about women's boxing for TheFightCity.com.
Bianca Fortis has written for the Detroit Free Press, VICE, and NBC News, among other outlets. After several years of reporting, she is now a student at the Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism where she is specializing in investigative reporting. She got her start in newspapers and has reported from the halls of the White House to the foothills of an active volcano and is versed in multimedia journalism. Last fall she took an independent reporting trip to Puerto Rico to cover the aftermath of Hurricanes Irma and Maria. She graduated from the University of Central Florida in 2010.
Lura Jackson's passion for journalism stems from a desire to connect individuals with their communities – and she believes there is no greater community than our shared environment. For the past six years, she has been an award-winning journalist and editor in Downeast Maine, as well as being a TRIO college tutor and an active youth mentor for the Olympia Snowe Women's Leadership Institute. She attained her M.A. in Peace and Reconciliation from the University of Maine and is planning on beginning a second master's degree in Environmental Policy and Management to best inform a future career in full-throated advocating for sustainable, symbiotic practices.
Richard Sassaman settled in Bar Harbor in 1986. He has spent many years working in journalism and with environmental groups, including eight years as the arts editor of the weekly Harrisburg (PA) Independent Press; two years with the Ecotope Group in Seattle, where he designed and edited books on solar energy and solar greenhouses, and co-authored a curriculum for training home energy auditors; and four decades freelancing articles and photography to a diverse collection of 75 different magazines and newspapers from Air & Space/Smithsonian to Yankee.
Sabrina Shankman reports on the Arctic for InsideClimate News. She joined ICN in the fall of 2013, after helping produce documentaries and interactives for the PBS show "Frontline." She is the author of the ICN book "Meltdown: Terror at the Top of the World," and has a Masters in Journalism from UC Berkeley.
Bill Sweet worked for 35 years as a journalist, mainly for science and technology magazines. He started as a political reporter in Washington, D.C., and ended his career as news editor for a monthly in New York City. A specialist in energy, climate and all things nuclear, he has written three books. Currently he does adjunct teaching at Borough of Manhattan Community College and the New York University Tandon School of Engineering.
Hanaa' Tameez is an independent multimedia journalist based in New Jersey. She was previously the diversity reporter for the Fort Worth Star-Telegram in Texas where she covered race, identity and social equity in one of the most conservative counties in the country. She holds an M.A. from CUNY Graduate School of Journalism with a concentration in bilingual journalism. She has previously worked for Animal Político and The Wall Street Journal in Mexico, Americas Quarterly and The Council on Foreign Relations in New York and the Green Bay Press-Gazette in Wisconsin. In 2016, Hanaa' graduated with a double major in journalism and Spanish Language & Literature from Stony Brook University. Hanaa' speaks English, Urdu, and Spanish.