CMCS Press Release – Toronto 2015

Centre for Media and Celebrity Studies - May 27


Toronto, ON (20 April, 2015) – Nigella Lawson not only “bites” but also makes us think. Her biographer Gilly Smith joins international delegates and discusses how the celebrity chef maximizes her glamorous image, sexual appeal, and earning potential on May 27, 2015 at the Centre for Media and Celebrity Studies (CMCS) inaugural conference in Toronto, Canada.

The conference titled Bridging Gaps: Higher Education, Media and Society launches an international program series, putting Toronto on the global map. CMCS director Samita Nandy says, “Canada has what Hollywood does not have – a research and production centre on fame” and includes a professional development workshop titled ‘Scholars as Critics’ on May 27 from 2:30 to 4:30 pm.  Key Speakers include Jennifer Polk, Carolyn Harris, Samita Nandy and Shannon Skinner.

Jennifer Polk is an academic and career coach for graduate students and PhDs. She earned her PhD in history from the University of Toronto in 2012 and is now a columnist for academic magazine University Affairs. See more:

Carolyn Harris is a royal historian and lecturer based in Toronto, Canada. Carolyn completed her PhD in history at Queen’s University in Kingston, Canada in May, 2012 and teaches history at the University of Toronto. She also provides royal commentary on the CTV news channel and CBC radio. Her forthcoming book “Magna Carta and Its Gifts to Canada” will be published in 2015 by Dundurn Press. See more:

Samita Nandy is the director of the Centre for Media and Celebrity Studies and writes as a cultural critic on fame. She earned her PhD in media and celebrity culture from Curtin University, Australia in 2012 and is a certified broadcast journalist. She has been featured on CBC News, CP24, Chatelaine and Flare among others. Her forthcoming book Fame in Hollywood North will be published in 2015 by WaterHill Publishing. See more: and

Shannon Skinner is the host and producer of television series, Extraordinary Women TV, now in its third season. With more than 20 years of experience in public relations, she is regular contributor to Huffington Post and has appeared in LIFE magazine, Good Morning America, Global TV, and Canadian Living among others. See more: and

CMCS international conference Bridging Gaps: Higher Education, Media and Society takes place at Oakham House (55 Gould Street) at Ryerson University in Toronto on May 27-28, 2015. Featured sponsors include Centre for Ecological, Social, and Informatics Cognitive Research (ESI.CORE), WaterHill Publishing, Nouveau iDEA arts organization, and MUKTA Advertising.

The Centre for Media and Celebrity Studies (CMCS) is an international organization that coordinates academic research and media commentaries on celebrity culture. CMCS carries a pedagogical philosophy that inspires integration of high quality research and media skills training in academic and public discourses of fame.  The centre believes in intellectual, aesthetic, and ethical values of bridging gaps in higher education and media industry.  Using the critical lens of celebrity studies, CMCS facilitates research, publications, productions, and commentaries to mobilize informed opinions in media.

For conference registration, title sponsorship and media interviews, contact or call 1-416-985-8887.

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