Newhouse School Debuts New Research Journal; Students Travel to Europe to Work on WWII Documentary

Welcome to the latest edition of the Newhouse Impact research and creative activity roundup, which highlights the work of Newhouse students, faculty and staff, along with accolades and other distinctions.

A new research publication from the Newhouse School examines innovative technologies as well as trends, strategies and challenges facing the communications industry.

Printed in December and published online in January, the first issue of the Newhouse Impact Journal focuses on subjects related to the emerging realm of generative artificial intelligence. Essays and commentaries were assembled from the contributions of speakers at the Newhouse Summit, which the school launched in July 2023 as a forum to discuss and exchange ideas about trends in media and communications.

“Collectively, the essays provide a thought-provoking exploration into the possibilities, challenges and future trajectories of generative AI,” said Regina Luttrell, Newhouse’s senior associate dean who also leads research and creative activity efforts at the school.

Luttrell and Nick Bowman, an associate professor of communications, are editors of the Newhouse Impact Journal, which also features work from Jason Davis, a research professor and co-director of the Real Chemistry Emerging Insights Lab.

The publication, which is scheduled to released annually, also features essays or commentaries from faculty or researchers from other colleges and universities from across the United States and Canada.

Newhouse Impact Podcast

The latest episode of the Newhouse Impact podcast looks at a collaboration between the Newhouse School and the World War II Foundation that allows students to travel to Europe to assist a documentary film crew uncover hidden stories of World War II.  Host Chris Bolt chatted with Shaina Holmes, an assistant professor of television, radio and film, and students Jada Marie Knight and Lyss Hollenback.

Part of their conversation is below. Visit the episode page to listen to the full show.

Q: How did Newhouse got involved with the World War II Foundation?


We first became involved with the World War II Foundation in 2022, after they had been creating documentary films for PBS for 10-15 years. They had decided they wanted to start bringing college students on their production trips and Newhouse was one of the first schools they asked.

We mainly go to Europe to shoot different stories about people and situations during World War II. The one we just completed was based upon a book that focused on Americans in Europe at that time.

Q: Why did you think it was important to get involved in these trips? What does working on these documentaries offer to students? 


Often when students work as Production Assistants, it’s on such large projects that they don’t get a lot of hands-on experience. However, one of the benefits of these trips to Europe with the World War II Foundation is that they actually get to work one-on-one in small groups with the filming crew. 

Q: When it comes to technical and industry skills, what do you think you most took away in that regard?  


This may sound cliché, but I think I most took away the importance of communication. Seeing the way that (the cinematographer and director)) interacted on a day-to-day basis was very interesting. After all, if something didn’t go right for (the cinematographer) with the filming, that automatically impacted everything else. So, it was really beneficial to observe how those two navigated challenges with the weather, reservations, tickets and one group being able to enter the catacombs for a shoot while the other could not. There was a lot going on, but they handled it. 

It was also beautiful to see how they came up with ideas at the spur of the moment, like the night shoot. They did have certain things that they wanted to accomplish but were also really open to seeing more and filming more. 


I would love to be a director one day, so shadowing Tim was amazing. Being able to see how his brain works and how much he has to juggle. And learning the importance of managing everything and planning and (like Jada said) communication. There’s just so many pieces that go into making a documentary and being a director. 

Recent accolades, highlights and notes

Regina Luttrell and Carrie Welch co-authored a paper on the “Barbie” film

Newhouse faculty and doctoral students were awarded internal funding for their research projects

Best Day Ever! Behind the Expansive Efforts to Market the “Barbie” Movie

A Look Back: 2023 Faculty Awards and Accomplishments

Shaina Holmes co-authored the book “Visual Effects for Indie Filmmakers: A Guide to VFX Integration and Artist Collaboration