Zach Sands, PhD




PhD, American Culture Studies (Film, Media and Culture/American Public Policy), Bowling Green State University, Bowling Green, OH: 2017

Dissertation: “Film Comedy and the American Dream,” chair: Dr Timothy Messer-Kruse, committee: Dr Lesa Lockford and Dr Jeffrey Brown, graduate representative: Dena Eber, MFA (successfully defended Dec. 9, 2016)

MA, English (Film and Literature), Northern Illinois University, Dekalb, IL: 2009

BA, Filmmaking (Screenwriting and Directing), Columbia College, Chicago, IL: 2003

AA, English, Grand Rapids Community College, Grand Rapids, MI: 1998

Teaching Experience:

Full Time Faculty, Arts and Sciences Department
Lamar Community College, Lamar, CO, 2022-

   Composition I (6 sections)
   Composition II (2 sections)
   Film Art (2 sections)
   Introduction to Literature (4 sections)
   Introduction to Theatre (3 sections)
   Music Appreciation (1 section)
   Ancient Civilizations (2 section)

Instructor, English Department
Northwest State Community College, Archbold, OH, 2018-2020

   Composition I (3 sections, online and traditional)
   Composition II (9 sections)
   Success Center/Writing Lab

Instructor, Lifelong Learning Program
Lourdes University, Sylvania, OH, 2017

    Charlie Chaplin: Art, Comedy and Politics (1 section, prepped but cancelled)
    The Post-War Boom: 1950s American Cinema (1 section) 

Instructor/Graduate Assistant, Department of Theatre and Film
Bowling Green State University, Bowling Green, OH, 2012-2016

     Introduction to Film (8 sections)
     History of Film (7 sections)
     American Film Comedy (1 section, online)

Instructor, English Department
College of Micronesia - National Campus, Palikir, Pohnpei, Federated States of Micronesia, 2011-2012

     Expository Writing I (4 sections)
     Expository Writing II (2 sections)
     Advanced Reading (2 sections)

Instructor, English Department
Grand Rapids Community College, Grand Rapids, MI, 2011

     Composition I (1 section)
     Composition II (1 section)

Educational Advising Center, Chisinau, Moldova, 2009-2010

     Conversational English Workshop (2 sections)

Instructor/Graduate Assistant, English Department
Northern Illinois University, Dekalb, IL, 2007-2009

     Rhetoric and Composition I (6 sections)
     Rhetoric and Composition II (2 sections)

Instructor, Film and Video
Grand Rapids Community Media Center, Grand Rapids, MI, 2006-2007

     Beginning Screenwriting (2 sections)
     Advanced Screenwriting (1 section)

Teaching Assistant, Cinema Art and Science
Columbia College, Chicago, IL, 2001-2002

     Moving Image Production I (1 section) 
     Image Design for Cinema (1 section)

Publications and Interviews:

Film Comedy and the American Dream, 2017

New Books Network: "New Books in American Studies," podcast interview with Diana DePasquale, discussing my recent peer-reviewed monograph, 2018

"Five People History Credits With 'Firsts' (Who Weren't First),", 23 Feb. 2017 (original version with a link to the publication can be found here)

     * Links to other online publications and additional writing samples can be found here.

Conference Presentations:

Austin Film Festival and Writers Conference
Pitch Competition Participant: Snow Birds
     Austin, TX: 2018

“Revenge in Modern Times Shall Not Be Justified: Charlie Chaplin and the Production Code,” Popular Culture Association/American Culture Association National Conference 
     Seattle, WA: 2016

“It’s the End of the World as We Know It… And I Feel Fine: Contemporary Film Comedy and the American Dream,” presenter, Midwest Popular Culture Association/American Culture Association Conference 
      Cincinnati, OH: 2015

“Music/Comedy/Art,” presenter, Popular Culture Association/American Culture Association National Conference 
     Chicago, IL: 2014

“More Than Meets the Eye: Neoconservative Rhetoric in the Transformers Franchise,” presenter, Battlegrounds Conference 
     Bowling Green, OH: 2012

“Using Alternate Reality Games as Teaching/Learning Tools: A Case Study,” panelist, Battlegrounds Conference 
     Bowling Green, OH: 2012

“Short Film and Roundtable Discussion: Send in the Clowns,” co-presenter and screenwriter, Battlegrounds Conference 
     Bowling Green, OH: 2012

“Re-Imagining Reality: The Ontological Discourse of Modernist Media,” presenter, Midwest Conference on Literature, Language and Media
     Dekalb, IL: 2009

Awards and Achievements:

Cannes Screenwriting Competition, Finalist: Snow Birds - Feature-Length Screenplay, 2019

Austin Film Festival Screenwriting Competition, Second Round Finalist (Top 20%): Subzero - Feature-Length Screenplay, 2018

Scriptapalooza Screenwriting Competition, Quarterfinalist: Subzero - Feature-Length Screenplay, 2018

Nicholl Fellowship, Top 15%: Subzero - Feature-Length Screenplay, 2018 

Bowling Green State University, Full Tuition Waiver/Teaching Assistantship, 2012-2016

Fulbright Grant, Documentary Film/Research, Republic of Moldova, 2009-2010

Towers Literary Journal, NIU Press, First Place/Publication: Epitaph - Short Fiction, 2008

Towers Literary Journal, NIU Press, Honorable Mention/Publication: House of Mirrors - Poetry, 2008

Northern Illinois University, Full Tuition Waiver/Teaching Assistantship, 2007-2009

Columbia College Alumni Written Image Award, First Place: Erosion - Feature Length Screenplay, 2006

Columbia College Big Screen Competition, Finalist: Basket Case - 16mm Silent Film, 2002

Professional Experience (Non-Academic):

[for well-known international film festival/screenwriting competition] 
Online: 2021

Composer, Performing Musician and Recording Artist (guitar, vocals, piano, percussion, bass, baritone guitar, ukelele, mandolin, banjo)
Grand Rapids, MI; Chicago, IL; Los Angeles, CA; Chisinau, Moldova; Palikir, Pohnpei; Bowling Green, OH: 1998-present

Stand-Up Comedian
Multiple venues, OH: 2014-2016, 2024

Proposal Writer 
Steelcase, Grand Rapids, MI: 2010-2014

Documentary Filmmaker: “Borderland: Moldova” (Producer, Director, Cinematographer)
Chisinau, Moldova: 2009-2010

Documentary Filmmaker: “World Famous” (Producer, Director, Cinematographer, Co-editor, Composer)
Jacksonville, OR: 2004-2006

Screenplay Coverage Writer 
Los Angeles, CA: 2003-2004

Production Assistant: “Monk”
Hollywood, CA: 2003

Script Reader/Intern, The Radmin Company
Beverly Hills, CA: 2002-2003

Additional Skills:

Writing, 35mm and digital photography, videography, linear and non-linear editing (Final Cut Pro and Adobe Premiere), 16mm film production, live sound mixing, lighting design, sound recording, production and mastering (ProTools, Logic, Sonar, Garageband, etc.), darkroom techniques, computer maintenance and repair (software and hardware, PC and Mac), graphic design, electrical work, music performance and composition, acting, directing, and promoting cultural literacy.


Popular Culture Association (PCA)
Midwest Popular Culture Association (MPCA)
America Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers (ASCAP)
Writers Guild of America (WGA), Independent Writers Caucus  

* Click here to see my creative CV.