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Associate Professor of Communication
Academic/professional background: Mr. Whalen received his B.A. in Communication from Santa Clara University (1989) and his MFA in Film and TV Directing (1994) at UCLA. Prior to returning to Santa Clara to teach, he spent 10 years living in Los Angeles as a working television writer, producer and director.
Teaching areas/responsibilities: Professor Whalen teaches in the film and television production sequence, which includes both introductory and advanced courses as well as a Screenwriting class. He also offers courses in the history of the Hollywood Film and Television Industry.
Research interests: Professor Whalen’s television experience includes writing, producing and directing for such hit series as Fox Television’s “COPS,” and A&E’s “BIOGRAPHY.” He has also produced series’
for The Discovery Channel, NBC, and The Learning Channel (TLC) including “THE CURSE OF THE GODDESS PELE” for the A&E series Ancient Mysteries;
“SKYSCRAPERS” for the TLC Series Super Structures of the World, and various episodes of “SIGHTINGS” for Paramount Television.
Mr. Whalen has also produced multiple award winning independent documentary films. Recent releases include “FRESH Women,” which was an official selection at the 2008 Santa Cruz Film Festival; “A Christmas in Tent City,” which premiered at the 2009 Cinequest Film Festival and “A Question of Habit” that screened at the 2011 Queens World Film Festival in New York City. Currently, Professor Whalen is in the process of completing “Gringos at the Gate” a feature-length documentary that explores US/Mexican relations and national identity through the intense rivalry of the two nations’ soccer teams.
Duties at SCU: In addition to his teaching responsibilities, Professor Whalen assists with the year-end SCU Film Festival: a two-day event showcasing student work from the previous year. He also manages the annual student Entertainment Industry shadowing program in Los Angeles.