About Communications

Do you have creative talents you’re looking to expand? Explore our Communications pathway, focusing on skills in areas such as Audio/Visual Production, Cinematography, Broadcasting, and/or Performance Arts.

If you are a returning student, apply online at mcusd2.org/enroll-LIFT. If you are new to LIFT, welcome! Please start the application process by speaking to your high school guidance counselor.

Available Certifications/Dual Credit Opportunities in Communications:

  • NOCTI Certification

  • Adobe Premiere Pro-Certification

Choose your Area of Emphasis (AOE)

Meet the Facilitators

I am excited to be bringing 25 years of teaching experience to LIFT. I am a National Board Certified Teacher with a Master’s Degree in Educational Administration from Eastern Illinois University. I coached high school soccer at the JV/Varsity levels for 18 years both in Mattoon and in Tolono, IL. For the last 2 years, I have served as the Instructional Technology Coach at Williams Elementary. It was in this role that I discovered a love for helping students in grades K-5 become involved in all aspects of creating a daily student news broadcast. I am very excited about kicking off this new journey in the field of Communications at LIFT. I am passionate about helping students find their creative voices as writers, filmmakers, and broadcasters.

Shad Huddleston  

   Communications Facilitator

I am excited to welcome students to the Communications Pathway at LIFT. I have a wide range of experience in video production, sound engineering, live/digital music arrangement, vocal/instrumental performance, and public speaking. I am thrilled to facilitate a program where students are encouraged to explore their interests and maximize their talents in the communications field. I hold a B.M. in Music Education from The School of Music at Millikin University with Summa Cum Laude distinction as an Illinois Golden Apple Scholar. I am the Sound Designer/Engineer at The Little Theatre on the Square in Sullivan, where I also serve as the Music Director of Theatre for Young Audiences. A proud Mattoon native and a graduate of Mattoon High School, I am the Vocal Music Educator and Director of the Greenwave Singers. In my free time, I enjoy traveling to music/theatre events in Chicago and New York while spending time with friends and family.

Zach Smith  

   Communications Facilitator

Student Success Stories & Outcomes

97% of LIFT high school graduates are enrolling in postsecondary education, advanced training, military, apprenticeships, or employed in the year following graduation.

260 Certifications & Credentials earned in just one year. LIFT students gain technical skills, earn industry credentials, and earn college credits.

137 occurrences of students participating in active leadership opportunities. LIFT students develop as leaders within their chosen fields.

305 service projects were completed in the 2022-23 school year. LIFT students make an impact in our school & throughout the region.

Meet Caleb, Communications Student at LIFT

Meet Caleb, a 2022-2023 Communications student from Mattoon. While taking classes at LIFT, he played a major role in developing video content for the center. He has since graduated and received a scholarship to Eastern Illinois University to pursue a degree in Communications there.

Apply Today