Staff members enroll in master's program to expand career goals

Boris Sapozhnikov, left, and Stephanie Berman are full-time RIT employees pursuing an MS degree in Media Art and Technology.

By Rebekah Greenberg, graduate assistant for RIT’s Media Arts and Technology program

During my first couple months in RIT’s Media Arts and Technology (MAAT) MS program, I have grown interested in learning about my classmates’ backgrounds.

The MAAT program currently has two part-time students, Stephanie Berman and Boris Sapozhnikov, who work on RIT’s campus and decided to pursue a master’s degree. I had the opportunity to sit down with each of them for a conversation about their motivation to attend graduate school and enroll in the MAAT program. 

Question: What is your full-time job?

Sapozhnikov: University Videographer for Marketing and Communications

Berman: Sales Supervisor for RIT Catering

Question: How long has it been since you earned your undergraduate degree?

Sapozhnikov: I graduated from St. John Fisher in 2009 with an undergraduate degree in Communications/ Journalism.  

Berman: I graduated from SUNY Brockport in 2019 with an undergraduate degree in Hospitality Tourism and Management.

Question: Why did you decide to come back to school?

Sapozhnikov: I have always wanted to get a master’s degree and RIT is very into professional development.

Berman: I wanted to continue working toward higher education. 

Question: What made you decide to choose the Media Arts and Technology program out of all the graduate degrees offered at RIT?

Sapozhnikov: The program is broad and well-rounded. I do not want to be shooting for the rest of my life, so this program gives me the chance to explore other options. I considered getting my master’s in film, but that may not be helpful if I decide to explore another field within the media realm. 

Berman: Originally I was going to continue working toward a hospitality and tourism management master's degree. I was enrolled in classes, but my heart was not in it and I went back through the MAAT curriculum and became excited. I have always been a visual person and enjoy being able to see how to further my skills in visual media. 

Question: How do you think that this program will help with your future career goals?

Sapozhnikov: It gives me the chance to be able to change careers if I wish to. Also, these days media professionals are expected to know a little about every aspect of media. This program touches on everything from marketing to production to understanding trends, managing workflows, etc. Even in my current role as just a plain ol’ videographer, I often find myself having to make decisions regarding these topics.  

Berman: It helped me fill in the gaps of the qualifications of my dream jobs.

Question: How has the work and school balance been going?

Sapozhnikov: It has been going well. A couple of times I had to step back to get some homework done. Work has been a bit tough since it is unpredictable but it has been nice to keep in touch with professors to make sure I’m on track.

Berman: It is going well. I have been struggling a bit with the technical, hands-on portion of the Media Foundations class. Work has been very accommodating with my class schedule.

I am glad that I was able to sit down and talk with my classmates to learn more about their experience balancing work and academics. Even though we come from such different disciplines, we all chose this major for similar reasons. I can’t wait to see what the coming months have in store for us.

About the Author

Rebekah Greenberg graduated from RIT with a BS in Photographic Sciences in spring 2021 and is graduate assistant (GA) in the Media Arts and Technology MS program. While finishing up her undergraduate degree, she wanted to pursue a master’s degree to help her with a career that combines art, leadership and media. Greenberg chose the MS in Media Arts and Technology program because it presents her the chance to explore business and media applications. She is from Nashville, Tenn. 

Recommended News