about me

headshot of Kelly Fincham

I am the programme director for the BA Global Media   at University of Galway in Ireland where we are helping equip students with the media and technology expertise they need to navigate a rapidly changing digital communications landscape.  I teach modules ranging from media literacy to technology and media to data in the undergraduate and graduate programmes.

A former journalist, I am an expert on Western news organisations’ social media policies through my PhD work which focused on the impact of social media on journalism and am now using that work to explore social media usage in the context of “dark participation” and creating workshops and seminars around best practice for women working in journalism, academia and politics. 

I made a mid-career switch from journalism to academia in 20o8 in New York when I joined Hofstra University as a part-time lecturer. I eventually joined full-time and was awarded tenure in 2015.  At Hofstra I  helped redesign the journalism programme at BA and MA level to include new modules/courses in social media, data journalism and multi-platform storytelling.  I also founded their award-winning student news site, Long Island Report which was the fore-runner of the Long Island Advocate. In 2020 and 2018 I helped launch and run the award-winning election night broadcast Hofstra Votes Live

An accidental Irish emigrant I had only planned on staying 12 months in New York when I arrived in September 2000 on a year’s career break from the Irish Independent. Due back in Dublin in September 2001 I ended up staying on in NY to become the founding editor of IrishCentral. com, the industry-leading U.S.-based Irish web site. During my time in NY I helped non-profits such as the Rory Staunton Foundation, the Irish Lobby for Immigration Reform and the Irish charity GOAL, build out their social and digital strategies.

Prior to switching to digital in 2000, and then academia in 2008, I worked at international newspaper titles including the Australian Financial Review (Fairfax) and Sydney Telegraph (News International) in Sydney; the Sunday Independent, Irish Independent and Evening Herald in Ireland and the Irish Voice newspaper and Irish America magazine in New York and I’ve written about the changes in the media industry and media education for  Poynter and Education Shift.