Adjunct professor keeps it busy

By on October 3, 2007

While checking or, students often fail to check if a potential professor is in fact an adjunct, and it could result in missing out on a truly invaluable experience.

Quinnipiac University hires many adjunct professors, and if they are anything like Laurie Scheer, they will be helping you out in more ways than one. Not only will they teach what is in the textbook, but will also give valuable insights into the real world.

Scheer started teaching in 1994. She had many jobs beforehand that contributed to the knowledge she is able to share with her students today. Scheer feels the reason she decided to teach was that she wanted to give back what she had learned and she, “Realized that I had knowledge I could share.”

Currently, Scheer teaches media communications, media history, and research methods courses at Quinnipiac. She also is currently teaching three online courses on screenwriting with She is one of the first people to teach a course on online video writing.

However, aside from teaching Scheer is currently involved in a variety of other things. She does a lot of work for the National Association of Television Program Executives (NAPTE). For them she organizes events, works at the NAPTE Boot camp, is a speaker at the NAPTE convention, is a moderator, and puts together media panels there. She is also a judge and presenter of the International Emmys. Scheer also works at the Film Television, Expo (FTX) that is about Canadian film and television issues. She is also a media consultant with a number of internet networks in the Bay area.

When Scheer graduated from Marquette University with a B.A. in Broadcasting in the late 1980’s she drove her car straight to Los Angeles. Within five days of arriving in Southern California Scheer earned a job as an assistant for ABC working on drama shows.

She worked up to a production assistant at ABC and then eventually moved to Viacom where she worked for 10 years. There she was a story analyst to the director of development for stations such as MTV, Showtime, Nickelodeon, VH1 and other Viacom productions.

From LA, Scheer moved to Chicago and got her masters degree in pop culture with an emphasis on media from DePaul University. She then started teaching at Northwestern University, Columbia College, DePaul University, and the University of Chicago.

After teaching, she went back to working in the media field, moved to New York City, and became the Vice President of Programming at Women’s Entertainment, a network that she helped to launch.

Scheer eventually traveled back to Los Angeles to write a book entitled, “Creative Careers in Hollywood” which was published in 2002 by Allworth Press.

The Library Journal describes it as, “Divided into 12 chapters, the book covers a variety of basic positions, including actor, writer, and studio executive, with additional information on ‘lot life’ and other aspects of the film world.”

Scheer also has released a DVD entitled, “How to Pitch and Sell Your Screenplay.”

However, as much fun as Scheer has had working at her other jobs, her real passion is in teaching.

The things that she has learned from her years prior to teaching and even what she is experiencing today contributes to the information she shares with her students.

“I love to combine media with teaching,” Scheer said.

Not only does she receive media feedback, but every class she teaches provides her with even more feedback and helps her with programming in the real world.

“(I) want to share and impart my knowledge so that the next generation of media professionals will be successful,” Scheer said.

Scheer has many students who have become success stories, in large part because of the knowledge she gained from the media world that she was able to share with her students.

One of her students recently won and award for the best drama pilot at the New York Television Festival. Another is the producer of major films at Universal Studios, and a third is the head editor of the television network, The CW. In addition, another former student of Scheer’s is the head of development at Sony Columbia Animation.

To Scheer, these success stories are her biggest accomplishment.

She said, “To see the actual manifestation of what I’ve taught or shared with these students… to me that’s the success I have right now.”

If Scheer is ever absent from class, it is most likely that she took a short trip back to Los Angeles.

However, for now, she will remain on the East Coast for personal reasons, and while she is here, students will continue to take advantage of what this media expert can offer to impressionable students.


About Lauren Zink