MSMC offers MFA program in film & TV

Mount St. Mary’s College is broadening its array of film degrees by launching a new master of fine arts degree in film & television. The two-year, co-ed program will be held on weekends to accommodate both working professionals and aspiring young filmmakers, and includes actors’ workshops as well as lectures from visiting industry professionals.

“We will have a very low student-to-instructor ratio, and students will have tremendous access to filming and editing equipment right away,” says Pam Haldeman, chair of the Mount’s Department of Film, Media & Communication. “They’re not going to have to wait to do real production work.”

The MFA in film & television represents a broadening of the college’s academic array of film degrees, which have previously been concentrated on the undergraduate level. The MFA program shares a focus on human stories with MSMC’s bachelor of science degree in film, media and social justice. The MFA coursework will be tailored to a student’s specific interests, from directing, producing and screenwriting to cinematography, editing and special effects. 

Haldeman says the hallmark of the MFA program will be its mentoring model. “Upon graduation, our goal is to ensure that the graduate has landed a job or selected a job in the industry and has something lined up,” Haldeman says.

Instruction and production will take place at two historic Hollywood studios. The MFA’s primary headquarters will be based onThe Lot, a studio built in 1919 during the Silent Era of film. Students in the Mount’s MFA program will have access to The Lot’s full gamut of offerings, including production offices, carpentry shops, screening rooms and more.

 “We’re thrilled to have a home at The Lot,” says MFA program director Ron Fernandez. “This is a studio that holds an important place in Hollywood history, and it continues to serve as a vibrant filmmaking locale today.”

Mount St. Mary’s has also inked a deal for its own 4,400-square-foot sound stage, complete with a three-wall green screen, at Hollywood Center Studios. There, Stage No. 12 will be home to both instruction and filming for students in the program.


Things beyond our imagination

Father Ronald Rolheiser, OMI

Recently, at an academic dinner, I was sitting across the table from a nuclear scientist. At one point, I asked him this question: Do you believe that there’s human life on other planets? His answer surprised me: “As a scientist, no, I don’t believe there’s human life on another planet.


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October 4, 2015

  • Sunday, October 4

    Gerard Thomas Straub Book Signing, 9 a.m.- 1p.m., Holy Family Bookstore, 1519 Fremont Ave., South Pasadena. Straub will discuss his newly re-released book, “The Sun and Moon Over Assisi.” (626) 403-6133.

    St. Kateri Mass, 11 a.m., St. Marcellinus Church, 2349 Strong Ave., Commerce. Everyone is welcome to honor and follow in the footsteps of St. Kateri Tekakwitha. Potluck and raffle immediately following – bring a favorite dish to share!

    Faith Support on Our Cancer Journey, 2-4 p.m., Mary & Joseph Retreat Center, 5300 Crest Rd., Rancho Palos Verdes. This afternoon of reflection will explore ways for those struggling with cancer can nurture their spirits and seek divine guidance and support. $25 ($20 if paid in full by September 25). (310) 377-4867.

    “Come and See” Vocation Event, 2-7 p.m., Heart of Jesus Retreat Center, 2927 S Greenville St., Santa Ana. Single women of high school and college age are invited by Sacred Heart Sisters to learn more about religious life. Dinner will be provided. RSVP by Oct. 3 at (714) 557-4583 or 

    Once Upon a Time: Stories to Awaken the Mysteries of the Heart, 3-5 p.m., Mary & Joseph Retreat Center, 5300 Crest Rd., Rancho Palos Verdes. $25. (310) 377-4867.

    Rosary and Mass for Life, Rosary: 4:30 p.m., Mass: 5 p.m., St. Cornelius Church, 5500 E Wardlow Rd., Long Beach. Contact Sylvia Aimerito (562) 429-1965.

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