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Photo of Michael Smith, MFA, Ed.D.

Michael Smith, MFA, Ed.D.

Program Director, BFA in Production
Professor, Cinematic Arts
Phone: (626) 815-6000, Ext. 5114
Fax: (626) 387-5747
Dr. Smith is a professor and a Fulbright Scholar consulting and teaching for the 2012-2013 academic year at the Red Sea Institute of Cinematic Arts, a collaboration between the Royal Film Commission of Jordan and the University of Southern California School of Cinematic Arts.

As a leader, Smith has managed people and projects including film productions, film festivals, conferences, and educational committees.

As a filmmaker, Smith has worked around the world in documentary and narrative productions, including lensing documentary episodes for ESPN, a documentary in Scotland, a whale documentary in Alaska, and a Kung Fu film in Italy. More recently, he produced the award-winning short film, Ship in a Bottle. As a cinephile, he produced the City of the Angels Film Festival and has served as the director of the CCCU Cinema Studies Conference.

As an educator, Smith designed the BFA in Cinematic Arts Production at APU and curricula at the Los Angeles Film Studies Center where he served as assistant director. He has written several successful grant proposals, including funding from the Hollywood Foreign Press Association for senior capstone projects and a grant from the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences to support internships. He has also conducted research and evaluative procedures to inform and improve practice in the realms of student recruitment, retention, curriculum, diversity, and graduation rates.

When he’s not working, Smith’s hobbies include travel, cooking, and community volunteer work. He has overseen the development of more than 750 student films and looks forward to many more.


Film production
Educational leadership
Strategic planning
Grant writing
Curriculum development
Program evaluation
Intercultural exchange
Diversity in higher education


Ed.D. – Educational Leadership, University of California, Los Angeles
MFA – Film/Video Production, University of Southern California
B.A. – English Literature, Wheaton College (IL)


  • College of Music and the Arts: School of Visual and Performing Arts
    • Theater, Film, and Television
  • College of Music and the Arts


  • Curriculum Development
  • Educational Leadership
  • Film and Video Production
  • Study Abroad

Courses Taught

TFT 317 – Cinematic Aesthetics
TFT 335 – Cinema-TV Production II
TFT 462 – Advanced Cinema Production
TFT 490 – Internship
TFT 494 – Production Capstone
TFT 498 – Directed Research

Office Location

Department of Theater, Film, and Television
Building Three, Darling Building Three, TFT Office Suite, Room 162, West Campus, West Campus

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