Master of Entertainment Industry Management - Student Bios
Arzoo, born and raised in New Delhi, India, completed her undergraduate degree in Mass Media and Mass Communication from the University of Delhi. She then pursued a year-long Post Graduate Diploma in Advertising and Public Relations. She then worked as a Media Planner with GroupM. Her job as a media planner led to constant interactions with entertainment providers and that is how she decided to pursue a Master’s degree in Entertainment.
This summer she interned with CreatorIQ as a Business Development intern researching competitors and new companies to enhance CreatorIQ’s portfolio of clients. She also interned as a Marketing and Media intern with Sawyer Studios where she developed digital marketing plans for several Independent and Bollywood films.
Arzoo’s goal is to work in data analytics and consumer insights for a subscription video-on-demand platform.
After graduating from Centre College in 2017, Valentine continued his education by joining the MEIM program. He has always been interested in music since his days breakdancing in high school. He wants to work in music management because he believes his personality, knowledge and ability to network would serve artists well.
This past summer, Valentine completed two internships at C3 Presents and Nettwerk Music Group. In those positions Valentine was able to learn from top managers in the field and create promotional content for their artists. He is looking forward to continuing his passion by working for a management company this fall.
Mingyu’s love for the entertainment industry stems from her passion for storytelling. As a hardcore gamer, she is interested in both the creative and business side of the video game industry, hoping to design the most immersive and interactive gaming experience. After graduating from Sun Yat-sen University with a degree in Public Administration in China, she continues her adventure as a MEIM candidate in the United States. Currently, Mingyu is a marketing intern with Ubisoft and a development/acquisitions intern at Shandong Film and TV Media International. With experience from her multiple internships in the areas of film and gaming, Mingyu has exposed herself to various aspects of the industry and is now seeking a career in Gaming Publishing/Operation.
Abby Botnick studied Drama and Professional Writing with a concentration in dance at Carnegie Mellon University. Upon graduation, Abby pursued a career in theater, dance, and film. Unsatisfied with the roles she could pursue, she created her own political satire show entitled, Bar Politics, a live comedy show, performed once a month in a bar in New Orleans. Each week, the team of writers covered local political issues ranging from New Orleans’ failing infrastructure to bicycle safety. Bar Politics inspired Abby to pursue a graduate degree with MEIM. As part of the program, Abby has interned with Whitaker Entertainment and Indigenous Media for development and research. In addition to her comedy show, Abby produced two short films motivated by her love of cinematography and dance. She hopes to bring both of them to the festival circuit soon.
Born and raised in Mansfield, Ohio, Carina has always been passionate about music. After graduating with a degree in Tourism, Leisure, and Event planning from Bowling Green State University, she decided to follow her passion and pursue a career surrounded by music. She is currently gaining experience in many areas of the industry through internships with companies such as Nettwerk Music Group and Bandsintown.
XUEYING (KELLY) CHENG
Born and raised in Beijing, Kelly’s passion for the entertainment industry is rooted in her love for storytelling since childhood. She received her bachelor degree from Renmin University of China with dual majors in International Studies and Communication. The beginning of her career in the entertainment industry was an eight-month marketing internship in iQIYI, a streaming video platform based in Beijing, where she learned how to generate audience’s awareness of TV shows and films by crafting marketing campaigns targeted at different audience segments. Feeling the need to equip herself with more knowledge on the creative side of the industry, she had two internships in film development this summer to learn more about script writing and script structure. This fall she interned with Archstone Distribution and Feldspar Studios. In the future, Kelly hopes to combine her knowledge in film development and her past experience in marketing to create and promote better stories on the screens.
As a self-proclaimed “unicorn” of her MEIM ’19 class, Olivia’s interest in sports representation stemmed from her part-time marketing job with the Pittsburgh Steelers. Seeing how short players’ careers can be made her vision more clear of how she could help people in her profession. With the goal of assisting athletes with their personal brand so they can find success both on and off the field, Olivia decided to take a risk by leaving her full-time job in I.T. as a Business Analyst to pursue the MEIM program focusing in athlete representation on the marketing and PR side. In the summer, she worked as a marketing and client services intern for Select Sports Group (SSG), a full-service football agency. This fall, she continued at SSG interning for one of the company’s agents. Olivia’s ultimate goal is to become a marketing/PR director for a sports agency and eventually build a clientele where she can work independently with athletes helping them with their brand and preparing them for retirement.
Mengting’s passion for the entertainment and media industry stems from years of exposure to reality shows and TV series in China and South Korea. After obtaining a bachelor’s degree in Journalism, Mengting interned at Shenzhen Satellite TV and China Central Television, working on both documentary and unscripted TV projects. Through the process, she got hands-on experience in television production and programming and also found that she liked entertainment marketing. She spent the past summer interning at Hylink Digital Solutions, China’s largest, independent digital full service agency, to be more prepared for the digital marketing landscape. This fall Mengting interned with Troika Media, a branding, digital marketing and performance media service company. Her interests include the fan economy and reality TV shows in the growing entertainment market in China.
After graduating from North Carolina State University with a Business Administration & Marketing degree, Emmalee decided to follow her passion to the entertainment industry. Now a Master of Entertainment Industry Management candidate, Emmalee is focusing her studies on expanding her formal knowledge of the creative fields. This past summer, Emmalee interned at UAA, where she was thrilled to be a part of an exciting agency team in New York. She is currently interning for production company Atlas Entertainment, and at the conclusion of the MEIM program, Emmalee hopes to continue a career in the film & TV production space.
Dan Hoyt began his career as a blue hedgehog, the first of many roles he would play. In ensuring years, those roles have included: milk-drinking forest boy; enraged, vengeful demigod; wise-cracking, trigger-happy, tomb-raiding adventurer; and, perhaps most notably, undead warrior locked in an endless cycle of life and death surrounded by and filled with existential dread.*
Dan earned his B.A. from the University of Pittsburgh, double majoring in philosophy and nonfiction writing. His interests are many, but his primary passion is the medium of video games. From a disciplinary standpoint, he’s eager for experience in all facets of the industry, from the minutiae of developer-side, day-to-day game design, development, and production to the high-level, publisher-side considerations of business intelligence, strategy, and marketing. While pursuing his MEIM degree, Dan has interned with Troika Media and National Research Group. He believes that as a medium, games are untouched in their potential emotional impact; the added dimension of interactivity is unmatched by other media. He believes that we have only just begun to scratch the surface of games’ potential, and he’s excited to help steer the industry in a positive direction.
Kristy graduated from the University of South Carolina with a degree in International Business and Finance and a minor in French. While in school Kristy decided that she needed more out of life than just numbers and wanted to do something fun and meaningful. So, she decided to begin a career in the Entertainment Industry. She hopes to be able to take her business acumen and create stories that change people’s lives that last forever. Kristy loves TV and film and wants to pursue a career in production in one of those areas. Her experience interning at Steiner Studios in New York this past summer and Mandalay Pictures and Artists First this fall was a great way to be introduced to the industry and solidified her love and passion for entertainment. One day Kristy wants to produce a Batman film as great as The Dark Knight.
Born and raised in Pittsburgh, PA, Ryan was raised watching movies and playing sports (once his homework was finished, of course). In 2016, after excelling on the golf course and the ice rink, Ryan graduated from Carnegie Mellon University with a B.S. in Policy and Management. Marrying his interests in storytelling and technology, he entered the digital marketing field, developing strategy for emerging and established brands to grow in the digital age. Deciding to grow his education and finally pursue the film industry as a career, Ryan returned to CMU to enroll in the MEIM program with the intention of analyzing the film making process from soup to nuts and maximizing creative and commercial potential. During the summer, Ryan interned at Mosaic Media Group, gaining knowledge in the management and casting processes in comedy and drama. He also interned at Mosaic Media and Whitaker Entertainment this fall. Moving forward, he hopes to expand his experiences, gaining know-how in the other film making processes that resulted in the movies he loves. Despite embracing Los Angeles as a potential "new home", Ryan can be found rooting for the Penguins or flipping through the stacks at the local record store.
Hugely influenced by films that he watched growing up, Jingyuan firmly believes that the film industry has the power to transform one’s life. During his undergraduate years at Beijing Foreign Studies University as a Journalism major, he gained internship experience at The New York Times and Ogilvy Public Relations, and gradually developed his passion for arthouse films and film festivals all over the world. Jingyuan joined the MEIM program with a career goal of working in film acquisitions. He has gained film acquisitions experience through his internships at Global Road Entertainment, 13 Films, Cohen Media Group and Film Independent. He also exposed himself to all aspects film acquisitions at Cannes Film Festival with an internship at Deadline Hollywood.
CHANG-HUI (ABBY) LIU
After graduating from National Taiwan University with a major in Japanese Language and Literature, Abby worked for a concert promotion company for a few years and developed a passion for live entertainment. With trilingual language skills of Japanese, Mandarin, and English, she has worked with many prestigious international productions ranging from musicals of THE LION KING and THE PHANTOM OF THE OPERA to the concerts of JOSE CARRERAS and the EAGLES. She recently completed a summer internship at Stories international, a marketing agency between Hakuhodo DY Group and SEGA, and now is a casting intern with Telsey and company. Abby strives to introduce the global content of live performances to Asia and promote Asian content to the world.
A Florida native, Alyson has always had a passion for all things entertainment. Living close to Orlando, she was able to attend her fair share of concerts and knew that music was the field she eventually would want to work in. After attending the University of Central Florida and graduating with a degree in Advertising and Public Relations, she worked for a year as a promotions assistant at Cox Media Group, which owned a collection of radio stations of all different formats. This experience allowed her to grow not only her event marketing and music promotion skills, but ultimately led her to pursue an entertainment master’s degree, with a focus on music, at Carnegie Mellon.
Combining her love of music, previous work experience at Cox Media Group, and recent internship experiences at companies such as Addition Talent Management, Gramophone Media, and Live Nation, Alyson has already built a solid foundation of music industry skills. She strives to eventually work in artist management or A&R for a notable record label.
After graduating with a B.M. in Musical Theatre from The Catholic University of America, Paul worked as a freelance stage manager in the Washington, D.C. area for two years. Productions include world premieres of Disney's Freaky Friday and James Lapine's Mrs. Miller Does Her Thing as well as West Side Story and La Cage Aux Folles.
Paul's focus lies in the digital space, specifically with social media influencers. He is passionate about the way influencers are able to organically start conversations and market a product to their global audiences. Paul continued to learn about digital and social media through his internships at the It Gets Better Project, Select Management Group and Flip Management. Paul also had the pleasure of seeing Flip through their merge with Select Management.
Raised in Atlanta, Georgia, Tori's interest in the entertainment industry stems from her background in journalism with a concentration in sports and communication studies as an undergraduate student at The University of Alabama. She focused on research in media and gender in sports examining topics such as how gender effects the amount of air-time on ESPN and Fox Sports.
Considering her passion for movies and her background in the entertainment industry, Tori has found working for talent agencies to be a great fit. She completed her summer internship at United Talent Agency, one of the world's leading entertainment agencies and will continue with UTA in the fall. She also interned with USA Today as a Content Development Intern and that experience has shown that there is a parallelism with development, production and agency work. Going forward she would like to work with MP Talent or TV Talent.
Armed with a longtime dream to work in entertainment and the amazing education she’s gaining from the CMU MEIM program, Megan plans to pursue a development or production career in order to continue helping others tell their important stories to the world.
Varnell’s interest in the entertainment industry stems back to this undergraduate education where he studied Sports Broadcasting at Texas Christian University with a minor in Business and Communication. After his undergraduate career, Varnell focus more on sports production and marketing, working for organizations such as the Los Angeles Sparks and NFL Network. It was here that he discovered his true passion which is talent representation.
Varnell completed a summer internship with ICM Partners where he worked in the global branded department strategizing ways to brand current clients in the film, television and concerts departments. Varnell is currently interning with Wasserman Media Group and hopes to eventually become an agent.
Born and raised in Ohio, the entertainment industry seemed far out of reach. However, Emily's passion for film, TV, sports, and ultimately music, has led her to the Master of Entertainment Industry Program at Carnegie Mellon, where she can continue to follow her dreams in artist representation. Before grad school, Emily graduated from the University of Akron majoring in marketing management and integrated marketing communications. This past summer, she had the privilege of interning at ICM Partners where she gained exposure and knowledge of a talent agency and the logistics of booking concerts. Emily hopes to continue working with an agency and one day becoming a booking agent herself.
YOUQI (DORA) PU
Dora's background is diverse. She was born and raised in Nanjing China, pursued her Bachelor Degree from one of Canada's top business schools, and moved to the USA to achieve her ambition in entertainment industry. Dora started dancing and playing the piano when she was five years old. Eventually, music and stage performances became her biggest passion in life. As she grew older, her love of presenting stories through another medium, film, has become an important part of her life as well. She has had work and internship experiences with music management, show production, and film development companies such as Peak Time Entertainment, Copeland Entertainment and William Morris Endeavor. With the hope of combining her love and interests with her diverse background, Dora is most interested in co-developed projects between China and North America. She wants to help all types of international projects operate more smoothly and with more authenticity.
After graduating from Georgetown University with a degree in Government with a concentration in Middle Eastern Affairs, Joan worked in grassroots campaigning in Florida. She then decided to pursue a career in the entertainment industry (even though they're similar in many aspects).
With a passion for storytelling and a desire to diversify both the stories seen and heard on screen and the people telling them, Joan aims to pursue opportunities in film or television development. She completed a summer Internship with The Factory Interactive in Miami and worked with two of its branch companies, Digest Miami and Raydr. This fall, she interned in business development at Troika Media. Moving forward, Joan would like to delve into all aspects of development, from story and script, to casting and sets.
Before returning to obtain her master’s degree, Katie was an Event Logistics Manager at George P. Johnson, logistically supporting the IBM account for over two years. In addition, she previously interned at Illectric River Music Festival in Waco, Texas, and rose to become the inaugural Vendor Coordinator in 2017. Her experience as the Event Operations/Production Intern at Superfly Presents this summer allowed hands-on learning while assisting production onsite at Bonnaroo Music and Arts Festival and Outside Lands San Francisco. Katie is continuing her live music focus with her clubs and theater’s operations internship at Live Nation. She hopes that her love of electronic music, and her future skills to be gained at Carnegie Mellon, will launch her into the forefront of the music festival industry.
Todd has been working in the storytelling business since he was 10 years old. Starting out as an actor, Todd has played many rolls throughout various regional theatres around his home-state of Michigan. After graduating from Western Michigan University and earning his Bachelor of Fine Arts in Musical Theatre, Todd moved to NYC and booked the national tour of Percy Jackson & The Lightning Thief, the Rick Riordan best-selling YA novel musical adaptation. Aside from performing on stage, Todd has worked on many film and television sets in the Detroit area such as: Five Year Engagement, The Pickle Recipe, Detroiters, and a Ford commercial staring Dwayne 'The Rock' Johnson.
Eager to learn more about the TV/Film business, Todd enrolled in the MEIM program and hasn't stopped learning since day one. This past summer, Todd was a development intern with Whitaker Entertainment at Walt Disney Studios. Todd also interned with the talent management company, Artists First. This fall he interned with Turner Broadcasting and Atlantic Records. His main goal is to become a studio executive who can bring the right team together to make pertinent, meaningful, and marketable stories worldwide.
Colin has always enjoyed data and research, resulting in economics and statistics majors from the University of California, Davis. After graduation, he worked in healthcare software, creating reports to increase efficiency and reduce mistakes in hospitals and clinics. However, he decided he wanted to apply his analytical skills to the entertainment industry as it has been an important constant in his life, from playing video games with his friends after school to watching movies with his family every Sunday.
Colin hopes to work in market research or consumer insights to digest data and help exciting content succeed. He has already had a chance to start doing this as a data and analytics intern assisting CreatorIQ’s marketing and product teams and as a development, research and strategy intern with Fox Broadcasting and Fly on the Wall Entertainment.
YIRAN (ELAINE) ZHANG
Elaine Zhang first caught the directing bug when she put up a non-musical stage production of The Sound of Music in eighth grade. Ever since then she has directed, written, and produced theater in her hometown of Beijing as well as New Haven, CT, where she received her B.A. in sociology from Yale University. Finding herself unable to get off her soapbox about the scripts she read as a director, she decided to join the MEIM program to pursue a career in film development so that she could be paid to pass judgement. Over the past summer she indulged her inner Francophile at STUDIOCANAL and brainstormed ideas for the next big Disney film at Whitaker Entertainment. Elaine interned at both Legendary Entertainment and Roadside Attractions in the fall. Her most recent short film will be screening at the Creation International Film Festival (CIFF) in Canada and the Oasis Short Film Festival in New York. She is currently in pre-production for an Asian-American themed poetry film. She speaks Mandarin, English, and French.