Faculty

Visiting Faculty

  • Dr. Michael Greenwald - Professor in Theatre Arts, Texas A&M University, TX. (Summer 2016)
  • Dr. Alejandro Canadas - Associate Professor of Economics, Mount St. Mary's University, MD. (Summer 2015, Summer 2016)

Sheryl Anderson

Sheryl Anderson

Adjunct Professor of Screenwriting

Sheryl is an accomplished TV producer and writer and novelist. Over the course of her career, Sheryl has written and produced for hit TV shows such as Charmed, Flash Gordon, For the People, and Ties that Bind. Sheryl began her career as a development executive for Grant Tinker's GTG Entertainment where she wrote for half-hour sitcoms Parker Lewis Can't Lose and Dave's World. Sheryl has also published four novels in her Molly Forrester series. In addition to her writing, she has taught for Act One, an instructional program for Christian screenwriters, and for UCLA's Writer's Extension Program.

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Sr Anahyd Arabo

Sr Anahyd Arabo

Adjunct Professor of Science

Sr. Anahyd received her Bachelors of Science in General Biology in 2012 from the University of California, San Diego. She is a religious sister with the Workers of the Vineyard, a convent of the Chaldean Catholic Diocese of St. Peter the Apostle. She is currently the Diocesan Accountant and Secretary. She assists in leading retreats offered by the Diocese and works in the education and preparation of the First Communicants. Sr. Anahyd made her final profession on May 15, 2016.

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Angie Bitsko

Angie Bitsko

Adjunct Professor of Acting

Angie's theatre credits include roles performed at the Old Globe Theatre; San Diego Repertory Theatre; Coronado Playhouse; La Jolla Stage Company; and the McCallum Theatre.  She has directed/produced over forty stage productions ranging from classical Shakespeare to contemporary dramatic and musical theatre productions.  Angie is also a writer, a produced playwright, and has poetry published in several poetry publications.  She holds a double Bachelor's degree in Drama and Journalism from the University of Southern California, a Master of Fine Arts degree in Dramatic Arts from the University of San Diego/Old Globe Theatre Professional Training Program, a Master of Arts degree in English and Comparative Literature from San Diego State University.

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Colin Brady

Colin Brady

Adjunct Professor of Animation

Colin is a director, creative producer and animation supervisor who has worked at Pixar, Industrial Light and Magic, Imagi Studios, Rhythm and Hues, and Pixomondo. Colin graduated from California Institute of the Arts with a BFA in Character Animation. Colin has directed animation for Steven Spielberg, George Lucas, Ang Lee, John Lasseter and Martin Scorsese. Colin directed on such films as Everyone's Hero, Astro Boy, TMNT, and Toy Story 2. He supervised scenes for The Hunger Games, Hugo, Green Lantern and Spiderman. Colin is head of story and animation for Light Chaser Studios in Beijing working remotely from his home in Los Angeles. Married for 21 years, Colin draws much of his inspiration from his 7 children. Whether directing Pixar characters or furthering performance capture techniques, Colin’s passion is the fine-crafting of narrative, dialogue, humor and nonverbal acting that make good stories great through the art of animation.

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Marc Burch

Marc Burch

Adjunct Professor of Business and LaunchPad Mentor

Marc is a founder and VP of Business Development at ComoBlue - a software application development company for Social Networks. He helped develop ideation, social gaming and product strategy for Facebook and mobile applications. He managed the business development and partnerships with Facebook and mobile developers, ad networks and companies. He served as Entrepreneur-in-residence, subject matter expert, judge and mentor for funding grants at the Center of Commercialization of Advanced Technology for Homeland Security. He is also an angel investor and executive entrepreneur providing early-stage capital. He has over 20 years of marketing, sales, business development, strategic partnerships and executive management experience in technology companies, including Hewlett-Packard, IBM, Actra (Netscape and GE Joint Venture), and MarketFirst. While at Actra, he managed an aggressive sales channel which helped Actra grow to a $127 million market valuation before the Netscape acquisition. At MarketFirst, he helped grow the company to over 240 employees with a $450 million valuation.

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Scott Camden

Scott Camden

Professor of Theology and Humanities

Scott is a theologian and musician. He is experienced in a wide variety of production venues including theatre, liturgy, television, film, and social media. Scott continues to enhance his skills as an award-winning classical pianist, composer, director, and performer. In addition to his many years of experience in the performing arts, he has spent time working in broadcast journalism, the finance industry, and parochial education. He is the founder / owner of Camden Music Studio, an 11 year-old small business which provides commercial services and products to local emerging and established performing artists. Driven and guided by his deep passion for the Catholic faith, Scott enjoys evangelizing the Gospel message in all aspects of his life and career. Scott holds a BA in Music (Composition / Piano Performance), MBA in Film Producing, and an MA in Biblical Theology (Exegesis).

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George Castro

George Castro

Adjunct Professor of Animation

George is a Senior Cinematic Artist at High Moon Studios since 2006 and has been part of a team that has shipped three titles since then, with more on the way. He began his career in 2003 working as character animator and pre-viz artist at Sony Cinematics Solutions Group in San Diego. He worked next as a Character Finaler on the movie 'The Barnyard' at Omation Studios. He returned to Sony Computer Entertainment America (SCEA) working on pre-viz and animation. George continues to improve his professional skills in traditional and digital arts as well as filmmaking. He seeks to create short films with a positive message that can express God's will in his life and to share His message of hope and love for all.

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Derry Connolly

Derry Connolly

Professor of Business

Derry is President and a founder of JPCatholic. Prior to JPCatholic, he worked at the University of California, San Diego (UCSD), where he served on the Executive Board of CCAT - the Center for the Commercialization of Advanced Technology and headed up CCAT CEO mentoring services. He taught Applied Innovation at the Von Liebig Center for Entrepreneurism and Technology Advancement and served as the Associate Dean of Continuing Education at UCSD Extension, leading a program with 40,000 part-time adult students. He continues to teach BioBusiness at the UCSD School of Engineering

Derry spent 15 years working in industrial Research and Development with IBM and Kodak. He holds 8 US patents and has numerous technical publications. He has a Ph.D. from Cal-Tech in Pasadena, CA and an M.Sc. and B.Sc. from University College, Cork, Ireland.

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Kevin Culbertson

Kevin Culbertson

Professor and Chair of Business

Kevin is a television broadcast executive with demonstrated experience across a broad range of disciplines with significant experience in the development and execution of strategic plans, team building and personnel management, fundraising, project management, and community relations. He has co-founded a broadcast television station and managed multiple TV studios, as well as large editorial, production, operations and engineering staff. He worked as a studio director at CNN; served as a member of the White House Press Corps and travelled extensively with President Reagan during his term. Kevin has his undergraduate degree from the University of Maryland and a Masters degree from Arizona State University. He was Adjunct Faculty at Georgetown University and co-taught classes on media and its impact on foreign affairs.

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Thomas Deason

Thomas Deason

Adjunct Professor of the Business of Film

Thomas is a producer, pilot, and executive management consultant who left his position with Alaska Airlines' management team in 2005 to pursue an entertainment industry career. In addition to his work with Grammnet Productions and Hero Pictures, his credits include the documentary Revolution Of Hope as well as a number of commercials and award-winning short films like Mosca Amor, Jaded, Pie 'N' Burger and FooL4LuV.

In 2007, he founded Fool's Errand Entertainment with his wife and professional partner, Lauri. They are currently in development and pre-production on three feature films, a web series, two music videos, and a recording project to benefit the International Justice Mission.

Thom also enjoys mentoring others who share his passion for social justice and quality, thought provoking entertainment. He co-founded The Ransom Project, an initiative that unites artists and abolitionists in the fight against human trafficking; and he currently serves on the development board of a Los Angeles inner-city school. Thom received his BS degree from LeTourneau University.

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Lauri Deason

Lauri Deason

Adjunct Professor of Marketing

Lauri began her career in broadcast journalism at Fox News affiliate WSVN in Miami, Florida, and went on to work for CBS News before pursuing freelance opportunities in media. She has written and produced for radio and television, published numerous print and Internet articles, and served as writer-director for Revolution Of Hope, a 2007 documentary about the orphan crisis in Romania. Her vocation has taken her from Eastern Europe to Mexico to Southeast Asia - and, most recently, to Los Angeles where she now works as a writer and media consultant.

Lauri has also helped develop journalism and screenwriting curricula at the high school and university levels, and is a guest lecturer and panelist at universities, writers' conferences, and film festivals across North America and in Europe. She is a graduate of William Tyndale College and holds BA degrees in Journalism/Public Relations and Biblical Literature.

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Nick DiNapoli

Nick DiNapoli

Adjunct Professor of Cinematic Visual Effects

Nick is the founder and creative director of Drive Studio, located in Carlsbad, CA. Nick has almost 2 decades of experience in the motion graphics industry. Drive Studio is a design and production resource specializing in network branding, identity creation, show packages, promotion and new media outlets. With a unique emphasis in designing and directing brands for international audiences, Nick's work spans the globe from the US to Scandinavia to Asia. In 2000, with his business partner, he formed Drive Studio to offer complete 'design through production' resources for the broadcast design and production industry.

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John Duffy

John Duffy

Adjunct Professor of the Business of Film

John has been a producer of over 30 feature films, training videos for U.S. Marine Corp and a couple of reality TV shows. He started out acting in New York (in theater and film), and transitioned into producing after moving to Los Angeles. He has actively been working in the film industry for the past 19 years. Recently, he co-produced and line produced the inspirational movie 'A Sunday Horse' staring Nikki Reed from Twilight. He also line produced the following: the short film 'Mercy' directed and starring Robin Thicke, the TV movie 'The Wonder Girls' that aired on Teen Nick, 'The Ghastly Love of Johnny X' which premiered at the Cinequest Film Festival and 'Beneath the Darkness' with Dennis Quaid. He has also line produced a series of training videos for the United States Marine Corp. (USMC) and two 3D commercials for Coke. John was the co-founder of the non-profit 'Vets on Set' which was dedicated to providing work and opportunities for military veterans in the Film and TV industry.

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Tom Dunn

Tom Dunn

Professor of Film Production and Chair of Communications Media

Tom began his professional career over 20 years ago on the Paramount Studios lot working for Entertainment Tonight in the post-production department. Since then he has gone on to produce, direct, write and edit hundreds of television commercials, documentaries, sports and entertainment programs and news stories. He has worked for local and national cable television networks, independent production companies and a local broadcast affiliate. Tom is the recipient of numerous national and regional awards for television production, including 4 Telly Awards and a Cable ACE Award. Tom served for 2 years as vice-president of the Orange County Chapter of the Media Communications Association International.

Tom received his BA in Television, Radio and Film Production from California State University, Long Beach.

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Lee Eskey

Lee Eskey

Adjunct Professor and Chair of Acting

Lee has been a professional actor, director and teacher for 20 years. Theatres include The Folger Theatre, The Denver Center Theatre Company, the Kentucky and Virginia Shakespeare Festivals and The National Players, as well as The Actor's Playground, a Los Angeles theatre company which he co-founded with Rick Wasserman. In LA he has also served on the faculty of Holy Wood Acting Studio and the Elizabeth Mestnik Acting Studio.

Much of Lee's time in Hollywood has been spent as an acting coach, working with diverse talent, from comedians and magicians to series regulars on network television and in feature films. Lee incorporates Pope John Paul II's Theology of the Body (TOB) into his work with artists and he is currently completing requirements for certification from the Theology of the Body Institute. Lee has a particular interest in forming skilled actors who are ready and able to bring their craft to the service of the New Evangelization through professional careers in the performing arts.

Lee holds an MFA in Acting from the National Theatre Conservatory and a BA in Drama from The Catholic University of America.

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Shun Lee Fong

Shun Lee Fong

Adjunct Professor of Media Law

Shun Lee is the CEO and Creative Principal of Genuine Productions, LLC - a creative media production company with a focus on film, new media and music. He is also the founder and creative director for 'The Greenhouse' - a non-profit organization for training, equipping, and engaging creative artists. He practiced law for 5 years in Omaha, Nebraska, focusing on civil litigation, corporate transactions, intellectual property, and media law.

In 2003, he left his law practice and moved to L.A. to pursue acting, writing, and other creative opportunities. He has performed in a number of productions in film, theater, commercial, and print, and is a member of the Screen Actors Guild. He has spent significant time on stage and in the recording studio as a songwriter and musician, playing several instruments. He has written a number of screenplays, articles, essays, and other works and is an often-requested speaker. He taught the Mass Media Law class for the Journalism and Mass Communications Department at Creighton University.

Shun Lee holds a Juris Doctorate from the University of Iowa College of Law and a BA (summa cum laude) in Journalism and Mass Communications from Creighton University.

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Gina Fricchione

Gina Fricchione

Adjunct Professor of Acting

Gina is a veteran actor with experience in both New York City and Hollywood, working on the sets of hundreds of television and film projects. Since earning her SAG/AFTRA membership in 1984, Gina's worked with Academy Award winning directors such as Francis Ford Coppola, David Fincher, Curtis Hanson, Peter Bogdanovich, Pedro Almodovar, Woody Allen, and many others.

Her work on television shows include Desperate Housewives, Castle, Revenge, Las Vegas, Scrubs, Jimmy Kimmel Live, The OC, The Mentalist, My Name is Earl, The Neighbors, The Closer, and many more. She will also be featured in an upcoming episode of the new series "Battle Creek", starring Josh Duhamel.

Gina's work on film productions include Hitchcock, Iron Man 2, Gone Girl, A Thousand Words, Ocean's 13, Godfather III, Reign Over Me, Surfer Dude, Material Girls, Rumor Has It, First Daughter, Lucky You, and many others.

Her TV commercials include Mercedes Benz, Neutrogena, Toyota, City Cosmetics, Shark Vacuum, Murad, Hilton Hotels, Dodge Charger, Daihatsu, and several international ads.

Gina trained at The Actor's Studio, NYC, as well as The Lee Strasberg Institute, L.A.

She has 17 yrs experience teaching in the arts and entertainment industry, and looks forward to preparing JPCatholic students with industry knowledge, combined with faith based guidance.

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Max Hulburt

Max Hulburt

Professor of Animation and Chair of Animation and Gaming

Max is a JPCatholic alumnus and was one of the first students of the school’s Animation and Game Development programs. He received his MFA in Animation and VFX from the Academy of Art University in San Francisco. Max worked for CBS Interactive - GameSpot.com, creating motion graphics and animations in addition to live video and graphics production at E3 and ComicCon. Max works as a 3D artist for 'Junior Giants Foodiecats,' a series of educational, animated short films for the San Francisco Giants youth program. He specializes in 3D modeling and texturing with additional skills in rigging, lighting, animation, and rendering.

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Jerry Jackson

Jerry Jackson

Professor of Business

Jerry's 30-year career has included executive management positions at both small and large privately owned and publicly traded consulting firms. He's overseen the growth and transformation of firms involving hundreds of staff and $100s million of revenue. An engineer by education, Jerry has also pioneered the use of innovative technologies to treat water, wastewater, and hazardous wastes. His projects have been recognized as 'outstanding' by professional organizations, and he's accompanied the US Secretary of Commerce in international trade missions, and has testified before Congress on applicable legislation.

Jerry previously served as Professor of Business at JPCatholic from 2006 to 2014 before returning this year. He holds a BS, MS, and PhD in civil engineering, is a licensed professional engineer, and has been on the faculty at five universities in the United States and overseas. He is an avid runner, surfer, sky diver, and pilot.

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Robert Kirbyson

Robert Kirbyson

Adjunct Professor of Cinematography

Robert's feature film debut, Snowmen, starred Bobby Coleman, Ray Liotta and Christopher Lloyd, and was produced by Steve McEveety (Braveheart, The Passion). It received the Top Narrative Feature at the 2010 Tribeca Film Festival. In 2009, Robert wrote and directed the award-winning CTRL for NBC Universal, the first stand-alone web series produced by a major network. Recently named "Web Comedy of 2010" CTRL is based on Robert's short Ctrl Z, which won the Delta Shorts Competition at the 2008 Sundance Film Festival. In 2004, he directed The Christmas Orange, an adaptation of the award winning children's book for the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation.

Robert graduated from the University of British Columbia Film School, winning the 'Top Graduate' award, while the film he shot and produced swept the local student film festival awards. From 1997 - 2004, he served as a Cinematography instructor at UBC. He has a certificate in Television Studies from Universite St. Anne and a BFA with honors from the University of Manitoba.

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Steve Kramp

Steve Kramp

Professor and Chair of Theology and Humanities

Steve is a theologian, poet and artist. His diverse experience includes being an impassioned educator and mentor, a committed literary artist and performing musician, and a youth minister and high school teacher. Shortly after completing his MFA Steve joined the University of California, Merced, as a Lecturer in the Writing Department. He then served as adjunct Faculty and then as a Lecturer in the English Department at Franciscan University of Steubenville. Next he served the Church in Youth Ministry and high school teaching.

Steve is concluding work on two books. One, a lyrical memoir, is titled The Lion’s Mouth and details his return to faith after living for fourteen years as a bohemian artist. He is also wrapping up the second volume of a large-scale poetic work based on the Triduum and the Stations of the Cross. Titled Holy Saturday, this volume deftly combines Trinitarian forms and dramatic monologues to explore themes as diverse as urban planning, totalitarian government, and the nuptial dimension of martyrdom. He has drawn up outlines for a book of essays, currently titled A Kneeling Poetry, which aims to kick-start and galvanize a currently moribund Christian literary practice.

Steve holds an MA in Theology and Christian Ministry from Franciscan University of Steubenville; an MFA in Creative Writing from the intellectual and artistic excellence of the University of Iowa Writers’ Workshop; and a BA in English from the University of Oregon.

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Joe Mignone

Joe Mignone

Adjunct Professor of Business

Joe is a principal consultant with JFM Global Associates. He has more than 35 years of professional experience in project management, accounting, leadership, change management, organizational effectiveness, quality management systems, quality auditing, Six Sigma, performance measurements, lean enterprise methodology, ISO standards and business management. Joe’s work at Solar Turbines Inc. was instrumental in the organization receiving the Malcolm Baldrige Performance Excellence Award in 1998. Joe holds a bachelor's degree in accounting from the City University of New York. He has completed graduate work at USIU in international relations and marketing and also holds several professional certifications.

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Rob Morgenroth

Rob Morgenroth

Adjunct Professor of Visual Effects

Rob is Executive Producer/Senior Director of Business Development with Dynasty FX, Sherman Oaks, CA with VFX and animation production resources in Beijing and Shanghai. Dynasty has produced visual effects for feature films, cartoon webisodes and a number of commercials. Prior, he was the Director of Development at the Visual Effects Society.

He is active in the visual effects community, currently serving as Chairman of the Program Committee for the Previsualization Society, and has been a moderator and panelist at industry events for many years, including the HD Expo, HDFEST and CASO, in addition to leading courses in VFX production at the Art Center College of Design in Pasadena and Cal Arts in Valencia, CA. In 1990, Rob founded a boutique visual effects company, E=mc2 in Glendale, CA, where he and his team produced award-winning VFX for both television and feature films.

In 2001, Rob and his team were honored with an Emmy award for the visual effects for the ABC mini-series, 'Frank Herberts Dune'. He sold the company to a Taiwan-based company in 2004, remaining on for a year as CEO and Executive Producer, and gaining valuable experience in Chinese operations.

Morgenroth graduated West Virginia Wesleyan College with a BS in Business, Marketing and did graduate studies in business management and the psychology of sales/marketing at Arizona State University.

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Vernon Mortensen

Vernon Mortensen

Professor of Film Producing and Distribution

Vernon is a filmmaker, businessman and a veteran of the international film festival scene. His many movies and television shows have been enjoyed by audiences around the world. As a filmmaker, his wide-ranging career has included writing, directing and producing the western/thriller 'The Sorrow' starring Kirk Harris, John Savage and Michael Madsen, as well as serving as an executive producer on 'The Kid: Chamaco,' starring Martin Sheen and Michael Madsen. He currently works for the motion picture production/distribution company Rogue Arts as a film and television producer and a distribution executive.

Vernon has an MBA in Strategic Management and a Master of Professional Writing (screenwriting) from USC, where he studied under script guru Syd Field and was an Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences Fellow. He earned a BFA in Film from the world-renowned Art Center College of Design and received a BS from Excelsior College.

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Jacqueline Nicolini

Jacqueline Nicolini

Adjunct Professor of Art

Jacqueline provides instruction in Life Drawing, Portrait Drawing and Painting and Anatomy in her San Diego studio and provides instruction with life drawing and anatomy to the in-house animators at Sony Online Entertainment. She has worked as an illustrator for a product manufacturing company whose clientele included such well-known motion-picture studios as Disney, Warner Brothers and Lucas Films. There she applied her talents to designing products related to such films as The Little Mermaid, Hercules, Pocahontas, Winnie the Pooh, and the Star Wars Trilogy.

Jacqueline received a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Illustration under the direction of Dick Oden at California State University Long Beach.

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Clare Oven

Clare Oven

Adjunct Professor of Mathematics

Clare is the director of the Institutional Research Office at JPCatholic. She previously worked in the civil engineering industry.

Clare earned a BS in Mechanical Engineering from Villanova University, an M.Ed. with a Specialization in Best Practices from National University, and has also earned a California Preliminary Single Subject Teaching Credential for Mathematics and Chemistry.

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Christopher Riley

Christopher Riley

Professor of Film

Chris is one of the most authoritative figures for the official screenplay format of Hollywood. He is a screenwriter whose first film, After The Truth, an award-winning courtroom thriller written with his wife, Kathleen Riley, sparked international controversy when it was released in Germany. Other credits include 25 To Life, a dramatic thriller for Junction Entertainment and Touchstone Pictures; The Other White House, a political thriller for Sean Connery's Fountainbridge Films and Intermedia; Aces, an action-adventure romance for Paramount Pictures; and a screen adaptation of the book Actual Innocence for Mandalay Television Pictures and the Fox television network.

A veteran of the Warner Bros. script department, Riley is the author of The Hollywood Standard: The Complete and Authoritative Guide to Script Format and Style. From 2005 through 2008, he served as director of the acclaimed Act One Writing Program in Hollywood, which trains Christians for careers as writers and executives in film and TV.

Chris holds a BS in Telecommunications from Oral Roberts University and was a National Merit Scholar.

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Nate Sartain

Nate Sartain

Adjunct Professor of Game Art and Design

Nate is a 3D artist currently working on Destiny content, with 7+ years experience in the industry. He has worked on six shipped titles with such clients as Bungie/Activision, SyFy, Disney/Pixar and Cartoon Network/D3. (Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare with High Moon Studios/Activision; Defiance with Trion Worlds; Cars Mania- Maters Tall Tales, Ben 10 Ultimate Alien - Cosmic Destruction, and Ben 10 Alien Force-Vilgax Attacks, all with Papaya Studio). Nate specializes in environment and prop art with strong skills in modeling, texturing, lighting, special fx, animation and setup, using such programs as: 3ds Max, Maya, XNormal, Zbrush, CrazyBump, Quixel Suite, Substance tools, Speedtree and Photoshop. He has lots of experience with production workflow and next-gen pipeline, including physically based rendering systems. Nate has a passion for great games and loves making them even more than playing them. He is a graduate of the Art Institute.

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Nathan Scoggins

Nathan Scoggins

Adjunct Professor of Film

An award-winning filmmaker, Nathan Scoggins' list of credits include The Least of These, released in 2011 by Universal and starring Isaiah Washington (Grey's Anatomy) and screen legend Robert Loggia (Big, Independence Day), as well as the upcoming TV movie The Perfect Summer, starring Eric Roberts. He won the Doritos Crash the Super Bowl contest in 2012 and 2013 with "Sling Baby" and "Fashionista Daddy." In addition, two of his award-winning short films were released by Lionsgate on DVD in 2008. He has written and developed projects for many companies in Hollywood.

Nathan holds a BA in English and Film from Wesleyan University.

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George Simon

George Simon

Professor of Film Production

George studied for two years at Central Michigan University in the broadcasting and cinematic arts program before transferring to JPCatholic to complete his undergraduate studies. While pursuing his degree, he created the award winning short film 'Get Clean' promoting the sacrament of reconciliation. With his brother Joe (MBA 2010), he launched 'Simon Brothers Productions' - an independent production company specializing in narrative film and live-event coverage. He went on to produce content for New Evangelization Television and has worked on film sets, international documentary crews, and many commercial projects.

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Father Ankido Sipo

Father Ankido Sipo

Adjunct Professor of Theology

Fr. Ankido entered the Seminary of Mar Abba the Great in January of 2010 and began his studies of philosophy and theology at JPCatholic that Fall. He received his BS Degree in Communications Media with an emphasis in New Evangelization in 2013. He received his Master of Arts in Biblical Theology in 2015, and was ordained a priest for the Chaldean rite Catholic Church in El Cajon, CA, on April 10th, 2015. Currently, he is the Superior of the monastic order of the Sons of the Covenant.

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Michael Steffen

Michael Steffen

Adjunct Professor of Game Design

Michael is a narrative game designer, digital video producer, and educator. He is also developing an indie story-driven adventure game, which explores the link between physical and mental spaces. Michael has consulted in game design for Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment, Sony Pictures, and Online Management Systems. He has also written and produced several short films, including the award-winning 'God of Commerce.' He received his MFA in Interactive Media from the USC School of Cinematic Arts in 2006. For his thesis, he designed and produced Telmahre: a story-driven game that explored the downfall of an obsessed nobleman, through live-action cinematics and an explorable game world. He has a BA in Computer Science from UCSD.

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Julie Anne Stevens

Julie Anne Stevens

Professor of Creative Writing

Julie Anne served most recently on the English faculty at Dublin City University, where she served as the Director of the Centre for Children's Literature and Culture. From 2009-2014, she directed the Masters in Children's Literature program at St. Patrick's College, Dublin. She also initiated ‘Conversations in the Classroom’, a series of informal talks given across Humanities and Education. Dr. Stevens lectures on nineteenth and twentieth-century Irish writing, the short story, visual culture and literature, children's literature and fantasy/satire texts. Her research interests centre on Anglo-Irish literature, visual discourse in literature of the late nineteenth and early twentieth century, and children's literature by writers of adult fiction. In 2007, she published a book on Irish writing and the illustration called The Irish Scene in Somerville and Ross. In 2010, she published a collection of essays on the ghost story, A Ghostly Genre: Essays on the Ghost Story from the Middle Ages to the Twentieth Century, which she co-edited and introduced. In 2017, Somerville Press will publish her book, Two Irish Girls in Bohemia, a study of nineteenth and early twentieth-century art and literature which is based on the sketchbooks of Edith Somerville. She holds a PhD from Trinity College, Dublin.

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Eric Van Hamersveld

Eric Van Hamersveld

Adjunct Professor of 2D Animation

Eric has worked for over 30 years in the entertainment industry as an animator with Warner Bros., Walt Disney, J. Ward Productions and Hanna-Barbera studios. His credits include: "The Pink Panther"; "Road Runner"; "Speedy Gonzalez"; "George of the Jungle"; numerous TV series; and several commercials including "Capt'n Crunch" and "Star Kist-Charlie The Tuna". For the Walt Disney Company as an "Imagineer", Eric produced visual special effects for EPCOT, Disneyland, and Tokyo Disneyland theme park projects. Currently, he is an Animator/Animation Director working on children's games and direct-to-videos for Mattel Toys, Fisher-Price Toys, McGraw/Hill Publishers, Paramount Pictures, and an illustrator for several children's books. Eric has a BFA Degree in Television and Film Production from Texas Christian University.

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Father Andrew Younan

Father Andrew Younan

Professor of Philosophy and Biblical Languages

Father Andy served as the Rector of the Seminary of Mar Abba the Great, the seminary of the Chaldean Catholic Diocese of St. Peter the Apostle until 2016. He was granted the mandatum by Robert Brom, while bishop of San Diego, as an ecclesial recognition of Fr Andy's posture and commitment to teach always in communion with the Church. Fr. Andy is an avid translator of Aramaic, and is the translator/editor of the Emmanuel prayer book, which contains English translations of Chaldean liturgical prayers. He is the co-author of Introductory Chaldean and Chaldean Grammar, and the author of Perpetual Jubilee: Meditations on the Chaldean Liturgical Year.

Father Andy received MA in Philosophy and Theology in 2004 from the Dominican School of Philosophy and Theology, with honors for his thesis: 'The Mesopotamian School and Theodore of Mopsuestia.' He received his BA in Philosophy from Sacred Heart Major Seminary in Detroit in 2001.

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Nicolas McAfee

Nicolas McAfee

Lecturer of Theology

Nicolas earned his M.A. in Biblical Theology from John Paul the Great in 2017, writing his graduate thesis on grace and almsgiving in the letters of St. Paul. He has previously served as a catechist in both years of confirmation preparation for the Church of St. Timothy (Escondido, CA). His research interests include gift and patronage in antiquity, the problem of modernity, and Catholic social teaching. Nicolas is a member of the Society of Biblical Literature.

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Robert Giracello

Robert Giracello

Adjunct Professor of Music

Robert Giracello is an award winning composer, performer, and educator. He received his PhD from the University of California, Riverside where he specialized in the theatrical works of Stephen Sondheim, the compositions and writings of Arthur Farwell, and electronic music composition using ChucK music programming. As a performer and composer, Robert has appeared throughout the United States and Europe, most notably in a special audience for Pope John Paul II, at the United Nations UNESCO concert in Paris, and at a special anniversary celebration in Cologne, Germany. He has recorded six studio albums and written two novels, most notably Three Landscapes, for which he received a MACRO award. He currently serves as Director of Music and Liturgy for Church of the Resurrection in Escondido. He is the father of two adorable kids.

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Jessica Urven

Jessica Urven

Professor of Finance and Accounting

Jessica has spent the last ten years working in the Finance Department at Alcon Entertainment (The Blind Side, The Book of Eli, Blade Runner 2049), with the last three years as the company’s Director of Accounting. She first started playing with numbers in the accounting department of Enterprise Rental Company and began her Hollywood accounting career in 2006 as the Bookkeeper and Programs Coordinator of Act One, Inc., a non-profit arts and education organization.

Prior to her move to Los Angeles, Jessica spent several years on staff at Heritage Church in Illinois, coordinating and supervising all technical and creative aspects of their live drama, video, and media presentations. She also served for two years as the co-producer of the fan-favorite live show, Creative Christmas, at the iWireless Center arena in Moline.

Jessica is also an accomplished flutist with a Bachelor of Arts in Church Music from Indiana Wesleyan University.

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