Class starts at 12:00. She enters at 11:59:25 with a coffee in one hand, blazer sleeves rolled, glasses perfectly askew and staple hoops shimmering. With an anecdote about a candid phone conversation with a high-profile media outlet or a funny, animal-centered YouTube video, she’s off. Inexplicably, Stacy (That’s what she’ll ask you to call her. She’ll learn your name and you’ll learn hers) is knee-deep in a presentation of her team’s research by 12:04. Your pen furiously scribbles across the page as Stacy, with her collar popped, insists that evidence for her arguments are “in the research.” Invested in the lecture, you fail to note that 200 of your peers are now looking at you in the back row as Stacy Smith, from 70 feet away, has briefly paused her lecture to inquire about your new haircut.
Quirky. Witty. Powerful. These words best describe the USC Annenberg faculty member and proud director of the Media, Diversity and Social Change Initiative. Here at Annenberg, we have the benefit of learning from faculty who are extremely active in their fields – Stacy Smith is no exception. Recently named the Most Influential Person In Los Angeles by LA Weekly, Stacy jets in and out of classrooms and conference rooms to deliver actionable insight on gender disparity and representational inequality in Hollywood, as prepared by her friendly colleagues Marc Choueiti and Dr. Katherine Pieper and a league of student research assistants.
And she draws renowned guests to our school: last semester, the Creator of How to Get Away With Murder, Director of LA Film Festival and Head of Production at STX Entertainment joined her for her presentation of new, cutting-edge research!
The Annenberg Ambassadors were there to hear about the inaugural USC Comprehensive Annenberg Report on Diversity (CARD). According to our trailblazing professor, “the study examines media content across film, television and digital platforms and ranks companies based on their performance.”
Joy Ofodu, Your Annenberg Admissions Ambassador
You can find the original blog posted on the Annenberg annen-blog.