Madeleine Shelley

Current Employer: WGBH, Boston's PBS Station

When I first got to Pitt, I was planning on studying education and becoming an elementary school teacher. However, when I started taking classes in the Children’s Literature program, I ended up changing the entire course of my academic trajectory.

While taking Dr. Bickford’s Children and Media class, I became inspired to go into broadcast media after I learned that Pittsburgh was one of the centers of early children’s television, since the iconic Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood was produced here. Visitors from Fred Rogers Productions came and spoke to our class, which eventually led to me pursuing an internship with their production team, the creators of Daniel Tiger’s Neighborhood!

I changed my major to Applied Developmental Psychology and completed certificates in Children’s Literature and Digital Media Studies. Through this combination of studies, I learned that I could merge my interests in educational psychology and children’s television and work in the field of educational media!

Since graduating in the spring, I have started work at WGBH, Boston’s PBS station, as an administrative assistant in the children’s programming department. I work with incredibly talented people who created the iconic shows I grew up with, like Arthur, ZOOM, and Between the Lions, and are on the forefront of new shows for PBS, like Pinkalicious and Molly of Denali. While part of my job deals with the practical business end of running a children’s department, I am also deeply involved in production, where I get to participate in meetings dealing with our shows’ scripts, designs, and animation!

I’m thrilled to be at my dream job working behind the scenes on projects I care deeply about, and I owe the inspiration and skills I needed to get here to the Children’s Literature department!