We recently caught up with Erin Reilly, a 2001 graduate of the MMC Master of Fine Arts in Filmmaking Program.
Erin began working on “Zoey’s Room,” an award-winning, interactive technology community for girls aged nine to fourteen, while she was a graduate student. She says that she was attracted to the program because she could choose to work with industry professionals as mentors, and believed this would ensure that her studies “would have a better chance at emerging into a real world application.”
She is now Research Director for Project New Media Literacies at MIT, where she has transitioned the program from a video production group to a multi-project initiative for testing new resources that exemplify a participatory model of learning - in over ten locations throughout the Northeast. Erin adds that one of her key successes at MIT has been developing the Learning Library, “a new type of learning environment that encompasses the characteristics of a participatory culture.” Erin has earned recognition for her work; in 2007, she won a Leaders in Learning Award from Cable in the Classroom. Her name was also added to the list of Top Twenty Educators to Watch by the National School Board Association (2007).
Zoey’s Room has been up and running for eight years under the umbrella organization, Platform Shoes, that Erin co-founded. Currently, Platform Shoes is working with MIT to integrate the Tek-Trek model of Zoey’s Room with the Learning Library application, “a more collaborative, participatory learning tool for the girls to use.”