Ryan SchmaltzRyan Schmaltz

Director, METL

As the Lab's founding director, Ryan leads the lab's overall vision, programs, operations and external partnerships. He has been at the forefront of technology since he began his career. Ryan is a technology executive, speaker, advisor and entrepreneur.

Previously, Ryan was Executive Vice President at Blippar, one of the world's leading companies for augmented reality and computer vision. Prior to Blippar, Ryan was an early leader at Uber and led cross-functional strategic initiatives for Uber's executive leadership. He has also held roles at Microsoft, Adobe and Deloitte. 

Ryan holds a Bachelor of Science in Management Information Systems and Supply Chain Management from California State University, Chico as well as an MBA from Johns Hopkins University.


Susan RuskinSusan Ruskin

Dean, UNCSA School of Filmmaking
Executive Director, METL

Prior to becoming Dean at UNCSA in 2013, Susan Ruskin was a Production Executive and a Producer in the film industry. Susan’s primary mission at UNCSA has been to design a curriculum that teaches students every facet of the filmmaking process from concept and production through marketing and distribution.

While the undergrad film program is focused on shorter form, in 2015, Dean Ruskin created the Masters of Fine Arts Film program for Creative Producers and Screenwriters to teach students how to write or produce feature length scripts with emphasis on the crucial entrepreneurial skills necessary to make projects happen.

The Media & Emerging Technologies Lab is Dean Ruskin’s response to the new advances in technology which are generating new possibilities for storytelling, particularly in immersive.  “It’s my responsibility to anticipate the tools and techniques of tomorrow’s moving image artists for the betterment of our students, faculty and the state of North Carolina.”