Meet the 2017-18 Honors Cohort
Vesal Stoakley is a SAC major and a native of Chicago, home to the School of the Art Institute of Chicago's Siskel Film Center, where his love for international film and documentary began as a Jack Kent Cooke Foundation Scholar. Vesal spent last year as a director and assistant editor on the direct cinema feature documentary on Michigan’s famed stadium, The Big House, and was featured in the Japanese doc series NONFIX on major television network Fuji TV. His ongoing interests include social justice, equity, Japanese culture and the development of new media communications. He does his best writing at home or on set beneath the cooling shade of his illustrious Japanese Sandogasa.
His honors thesis screenplay Shelter In Place focuses on social and domestic violence on the South Side of Chicago, PTSD, and the corollaries and oppositions between mainstream and underground economic survival. Shelter In Place is set in 2009, in the wake of the election of President Obama and the rise of the iPhone. The story centers around the historic neighborhood of Bronzeville, the “Harlem of the Midwest” in Obama’s adopted hometown of Chicago.
Vesal's SAC Faculty Advisors are Jim Burnstein (primary) and Markus Nornes (secondary)
Kelsey Fox is a senior SAC major and Anthropology minor. Last summer Kelsey had the opportunity to PA at Billions (a show helmed by a Michigan alum) in New York. As noted by the man at Walgreens who scans in Kelsey’s acid reflux medicine, Kelsey is in ComCo, the oldest improv comedy troupe on campus. Kelsey also serves as the VP of External Relations for UAC, so if you want to externally relate, you know who to ask!
For her honors thesis, Kelsey is grateful for the opportunity to explore and celebrate queerness in a comedy pilot about being chewed up, digested, and excreted by your dreams, and then realizing that maybe they weren’t the right dreams in the first place.
Kelsey's SAC Faculty Advisors are Oliver Thornton (primary) and Candace Moore (secondary)