Broadcasting and cinematic arts faculty appreciated for stories, inspiring students

BCA faculty member Mark Poindexter poses in his office for a photo on Nov. 1 in Moore Hall.

Mark Poindexter has been employed as a faculty member within Central Michigan University's department of broadcast and cinematic arts since 1987. In his 31 years of teaching, he said he's learned, as well.

“A journalist needs to know a lot. Certainly more than an average knowledge of history, geography, sociology, psychology -- they are all really critical areas," he said. 

One of Poindexter's current students, Jackson sophomore Victoria Teachout, has learned how the media can affect those topics, as well. 

Teachout is currently in Poindexter’s BCA 210: Survey of the Mass Media course. She said Poindexter has helped her realize how mass media can influence society as a whole.

Though Poindexter is faculty for the department of broadcast and cinematic arts, he has extensive journalism experience.  He was an editor at a daily newspaper, Advertiser-News, in Lexington, Missouri from 1974-75.  

“It was a really intense experience," he said. "I did pretty much everything and it was a really small staff.”  

Two people were responsible for news coverage and another person mainly focused on weddings.  As for “hard news,” Poindexter said he was was the only one who covered it full time -- meaning he occasionally had to work 14 to 20 hour days.

“It’s been incredible to learn about how even just one person standing up can make others come to a realization and join in," Teachout said. "It becomes a wave and I think it’s really important and fascinating.”

Poindexter hasn't just been an effective teacher, however. He has influenced the lives of his students in different ways. According to Teachout, the professor is one of the reasons as to why she is interested in learning Spanish, because Poindexter speaks five languages. He also influenced her interest in broadcast and cinematic arts and she’s even considering going into journalism.

Davison freshman Bailey Talaska is also one of Dr. Poindexter’s BCA 210 students and said he has influenced the way she thinks when it comes to viewing films, TV shows and listening to the radio. 

“I look at things with a more critical eye and think more in depth rather than just watching something surface level and not digging deeper," she said. “The biggest thing I’ll take away from his class would be the importance of media and how many different aspects media actually encompasses and how important it is not only in politics, society, and socializing.”

Talaska said that outside learning from Poindexter, she also enjoys hearing about who he is as a person.

Poindexter will occasionally share stories stories with students regarding his life experiences. Stories include, but are not limited to: his work as a Fulbright Lecturer at Institut Supérieur de Journalisme in Rabat, Morocco in 1990, his work at CMU in the Office of International Affairs from 2008-2011 and his position as the director of broadcasting for North Dakota State University while he was in graduate school.

“He’s such a cool person and lives such an amazing life," she said. "It’s very interesting to hear him talk about his life and what he’s been through and has done.”