Stay tuned for upcoming events taking place during the Fall 2024 Semester!


Radio Jaguar Launch and Annual Fall Conversation on Equity and Inclusion in the Media: Radio Edit (11/2/23)


Join us for an afternoon of music and conversation!


Launch of Radio Jaguar, GovState’s student-run radio station
Time: 12:30 p.m.
Location: Hall of Governors

Reception, moderated panel discussion, and audience Q&A on Equity and Inclusion in Radio
Time: 4 p.m.
Location: Engbretson Hall

Moderated by Dr. Cherise Stone-Thompson with special guest panelists Ayana Contreras, Content Director for Vocalo Radio Chicago, Anna DeShawn, founder of E3 Radio, and SashaAnn Simons, host of Reset on WBEZ Chicago.


Dr. Cherise Joy Stone-Thompson

Cherise Stone-Thompson

Dr. Cherise Joy Stone-Thompson who goes by the moniker – Joy Storm – is a multi-talented singer-songwriter, actress, activist, and educator. In addition to her passion for music, Dr. StoneThompson teaches college composition and literature classes. She is a three-time graduate of Governors State University, with a Master of Arts in English, MBA, and a doctorate in Interdisciplinary Leadership. In July 2022, she released her debut album, A Tempest a Piece of Joy. Dr. Cherise Joy Stone-Thompson and her husband, author Lance D. Thompson, Jr. (Poetic Justice) founded CMI Radio, an internet-based radio station. CMI Radio believes in giving all artists, particularly marginalized independent artists, a platform to be heard worldwide.


Ayana Contreras

Ayana Contreras

Ayana Contreras is a cultural historian, memory worker, radio DJ, and archivist. An avid collector with over 8000 vintage vinyl records, she hosts the Reclaimed Soul program on WBEZ and Vocalo Radio in Chicago. She is also a columnist for DownBeat magazine, and her writings have been published in The New York Times, Chicago Review, Oxford American, and Bandcamp Daily among other publications. Her book on Post-Civil Rights Era cultural history, titled Energy Never Dies: Afro-Optimism and Creativity in Chicago, was published in December 2021 through the University of Illinois Press.

Anna DeShawn

Anna DeShawn

Anna, pronouns anything respectful, is a multi-award and Ambie award-winning podcast producer and host. She is also a Chicago-born social entrepreneur who builds streaming platforms that center & celebrate BIPOC & QTPOC creatives. Media has always been her passion and in 2009 she turned that passion into a reality when she founded E3 Radio, an online radio station playing Queer music & reporting on Queer news with an intersectional lens. She expanded her media reach when she co-founded The Qube, a podcast production company and curated platform to discover the best music & podcasts by BIPOC & QTPOC creatives. Most recently, Anna was announced as part of the Chicago LGBT Hall of Fame 2023 induction cohort. Anna is determined to ride media into its next era by utilizing digital media streams to tell the stories and play the music that deserves to be heard. Learn more about her work here.

Sasha-Ann Simons

Sasha-Ann Simons

Sasha-Ann Simons is an award-winning journalist and the host of WBEZ's Reset. She comes to Chicago from Washington's NPR station WAMU where she was a program host, regularly behind the mic on newscasts and talk shows. Sasha-Ann was also a national reporter, focused on issues of race, identity, and economic mobility. Her accolades include an Edward R. Murrow award and a radio feature award from the National Association of Black Journalists. In 2022, she received a Peter Lisagor award for health and science reporting from the Chicago Headline Club. Sasha-Ann has a bachelor's degree in journalism from Toronto Metropolitan University and studied film and television production at American University.

First Voice Grand Slam (4/20/23)


Date: April 20, 2023
Time: 6 p.m.
Location: E-Lounge

Cheer on our six finalists as they tell their stories about a time when the mask came off. They’ll be competing for cash prizes.

First Voice Story Slam: When the Wheels Came Off (4/11/23)


At this annual storytelling competition, all GovState students are invited to tell a live 5-minute story based on a theme and earn a chance to compete for cash prizes in the Grand Slam event. Finalists receive professional coaching to hone their stories in between events. This year’s theme is When the Wheels Came Off. Special guest host: Shannon Cason. Everyone is invited to cheer on our storytellers.

March 28 Story Slam at 1:00 pm in the Hall of Governors

April 11 Grand Slam at 6:00 pm in E Lounge

First Voice Story Slam (4/6/23)


Date: April 6, 2023
Time: 1 p.m.
Location: Lakeside Lounge
Theme: When the Mask Came Off

Share your story or come to listen.

All GovState students are invited to share a story on the theme for the day or come to cheer on your favorite storytellers at this storytelling competition. Six finalists will move on to the Grand Slam on April 20 to compete for cash prizes. For questions or more information, contact Kerri Morris or Novia Pagone at communitymedia@govst.edu.

Special guest host to be announced soon.

Media Research Institute Fellowship Program
Information Session (02/13/23)


The academic year-long Fellowship Program aims to stimulate research projects that through incorporating media foster democratic engagement, increase civic awareness, and amplify the diverse voices of our region, leading to publication or broadcast. See the ​Full Call for Proposals. Proposals due: March 1st at 11:59pm CST
Information Session Presented by Dr. Rebecca Siefert, Former MRI Fellow
Tuesday, February 13th, at 1:00-2:30pm in the CN room (C3310)
To participate remotely, please email Rebecca Siefert for the link.

A Conversation About Democracy and Inclusion in the Media (9/22/22)


This panel discussion, moderated by Jelena Radovic-Fanta, celebrated the official launch of the Center for Community Media on September 22, 2022. We were joined by the following special guests:

Moustafa Bayoumi
Author of How Does It Feel To Be a Problem?: Being Young and Arab in America

Oswaldo Zavala
Author of Drug Cartels Do Not Exist: Narcotrafficking and Culture in the US and Mexico