PowersTowsonPhotoElia Powers, Ph.D. is an assistant professor of journalism and new media at Towson University. MediaShift named him an innovative journalism educator for “progressive [news literacy] practices that educators can apply in their classrooms.”

He earned his doctoral degree in journalism studies from the University of Maryland’s Philip Merrill College of Journalism. His main research interests are audience engagement and the impact of journalism; youth civic engagement and news/media literacy; and media and disability. His research has been published in peer-reviewed journals such as Journalism Studies, Digital Journalism, Newspaper Research JournalJournal of Broadcasting & Electronic Media and Journal of Media Business Studies.

Read a MediaShift article about his recent study on how the group behind the Panama Papers measures impact, and check out this Huffington Post piece about his study of college students’ engagement with politics during an election year.  Listen to an interview with Newstalk 1010 in Toronto about his research on students’ addiction to media.

He has taught courses such as multimedia reporting capstone, mass communication research (data literacy focus), news writing and reporting, sports writing, journalism history, journalism ethics and media literacy.  A graduate of Northwestern University’s Medill School of Journalism, he attended and later taught at the National High School Institute (Cherubs program).

He is a contributor to MediaShift, a site that covers the intersection of media and technology. Listen to a podcast in which he discusses his article about the emerging role of engagement editors.

As a journalist for more than 15 years, he has covered media, higher education, health, business, politics, sports, the environment and the arts for publications such as The Los Angeles Times, Inside Higher Ed and The St. Louis Beacon. He created and produced podcasts at Inside Higher Ed and started a blog aimed at young readers while at the St. Louis Beacon. He holds certificates in data-driven and multimedia journalism.

Check out a video that ran with a recent behind-the-scenes piece about the award-winning Big Ten Network documentary series ‘The Journey.’


View a timeline of his career.



Teacher. Researcher. Journalist.