Two success stories — Centennial Journalism grads make good

Skills you learn in journalism school can take you to places you probably hadn’t expected.

Graduate Mike Crisolago sent a lovely email last week to tell us he is working full time (with benefits!)  at Hostopia managing their photography and imaging needs, using skills he learned in photojournalism class.

Mike Crisolago (l), Michelle Nash, Meghan Housely at Centennial College.

A versatile student (that’s him on the left during orientation at Centennial with Michelle Nash and Meghan Housley) with a background in theatre, Mike’s piece about 20 books every tween and teen should read, was mentioned in the  New Yorker. Now that story he wrote, while on internship with Canadian Family, has been nominated for the Canadian Online  Publishing Awards.

His story is category 8 in the finalists. The award is announced October 20th. 
Go Mike!

In his spare time, Mike is freelancing for Canadian Family, and Quill and Quire, making slideshows, plus maintaining his own personal portfolio page, and he is doing his thing one year out of j-school.

Mike writes:

I just wanted to write to let you all know because none of the above would ever have come to pass without the education, guidance and support of the Centennial staff. So a huge THANK YOU to all of you! All the best for this school year! I hope the students at the school now appreciate the opportunities that are about to open to them.

Another email came this week from graduate Stephen Humphrey.

Stephen Humphrey


Sarah Peebles

Stephen graduated two years ago,  also from the Centennial post-graduate journalism program. A poet, writer and radio host, Stephen is now producing photography work and videos about bees– not honey bees but solitary bees and wasps. Some of this work is being done in collaboration with a Toronto performance artist Sarah Peebles, who is making music using the sounds of bees and wasps. He’s been watching and learning about bees at the Toronto Zoo as well as in the artist’s studio, and Steve was a writer in residence at Guelph.

He also got stung in the face while photographing a beehive this summer!


Sarah Peebles’ bee recording computer


 He writes:   I’m stretching what you taught me as far as I can right now. Thanks for opening my mind to possibilities. 
Check out his work at:


Leafcutter bee (Megachile relativa) builds a brood cell August 14, 2010:
Leafcutter bee (Megachile relativa) cleans house:
Preening Agepostemon bee: the sequel:
A tale of two resin bees in Toronto July 18, 2010:
Solitary bee June 17, 2010:



You guys made my week!

1 thought on “Two success stories — Centennial Journalism grads make good”

  1. Hello all.

    Thanks to Ellin for her kind words, but let me clarify a couple of things.

    First of all, I'm not lecturing at Guelph University. That institution is home to some of the world's leading bee experts. They don't need me to lecture. I'm still eagerly learning from them.

    Professor Emeritus Dr. Peter Kevan (also scientific director of the national pollinator study network Canpolin) very generously made me WRITER-in-residence.

    This is a rather rare privilege, since most writers-in-residence are based in English departments. I only know of one other person who was author-in-residence at a science department, so I'm a little proud.

    Also, let me point out that I don't work for the Toronto Zoo proper.

    They have very generously allowed composer and multimedia artist to install a couple of her brilliant 'audio bee booths' at the Toronto Zoo so the public can observe solitary bees.

    Most of the videos Ellin was kind enough to post were macro videos of bees who moved into this observer-friendly habitat.

    Also, while I believe in the importance of showing people that there are many bee species in the world such as leafcutter bees, mason bees, stingless bees and bumblebees, I'm also partial to honeybees, even after I was stung in the face, as Ellin mentioned, photographing their hive.

    Jim Babbage always said get close to the subject…

    I wanted to make the distinction because solitary bees very seldom sting. They don't make honey, so they're not that aggressive to strangers. Who's going to steal a thimble-sized nest made of leaves. Solitary bees ignore people.

    Observers visit the audio bee booth all the time and nobody gets stung.

    Meanwhile, only an aspiring nature photographer with a death wish would approach a honeybee hive without beekeeping gear.

    You know what they say: a picture's worth a thousand stings.


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