Our Story

Matador has redefined travel media with an award-winning, multilingual editorial and educational platform that reaches a global monthly audience of more than 10 million. Since 2009, thousands of writers, photographers, and filmmakers have graduated from MatadorU programs, with students winning prestigious awards, getting paid assignments worldwide, and going on to successful careers in travel media. Our community of editors and guest faculty, along with major brand and destination partners, collectively forms a one of a kind travel media ecosystem, with editors proactively engaging students around projects and publishing opportunities.

Meet the MatadorU Faculty

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Carlo Alcos Director of MatadorU

Carlo Alcos (Director of MatadorU)

Carlo is a Managing Editor at Matador and Director of MatadorU. He began freelancing with Matador in 2008 and has been an editor since 2009. His work has also appeared in Business Insider, CNN Travel, Asian Traveler, and Huffington Post TV, as well as on a novel where he landed a cover photo. In his other life he performs (guitar, mandolin, bass, vocals) with First After the Fire, an acoustic group, and loves yoga, rock climbing, hiking, and nature. He lives in Nelson, BC.

David Seth Miller Director of Curricula

David Seth Miller (Director of Curricula)

Two-time recipient of the Lowell Thomas Award, David Miller is Matador's Senior Editor and Director of Curricula. Since 2007 he has helped Matador achieve exponential growth, adding nearly 200 million new users in the past two years. In 2015 he authored his first book--a collection of meditations and exercises for writers called 23 PROMPTS.  Miller has presented at Tumblr,  Hostelling International, the Public Relations Society of America, and the Association of Writers and Writing Programs. He lives with his wife and two young children in Asheville, North Carolina.

Scott Sporleder Director of Filmmaking

Scott Sporleder (Director of Filmmaking)

Scott is a professional photographer and filmmaker who found his passion for photography and travel documentation while living in China nearly 10 years ago. Since then he has gone on to win various photography awards as well as having his work published in The New York Times, Mashable, NPR.org, The New Yorker, The Daily Guardian, Islands Magazine, and numerous other publications. Over the past two years Scott has traveled from Tasmania to the Canadian Arctic and from the Namibian desert to the Fjords of Norway for Matador Network, where he is the Creative Director. You can check out his photos at sporlederart.com or follow his adventures on Instagram @SpoArt.

Kate Siobhan Mulligan Lead Photography Faculty

Kate Siobhan Mulligan (Lead Photography Faculty)

Kate Siobhan Mulligan is a travel photographer and freelancer based out of Vancouver, Canada. Besides co-creating the photography curriculum at MatadorU, she is a published author, photo-educator, mentor, and public speaker, and is currently sponsored by Sony Canada. She specializes in Travel Portraiture and Storytelling. Kate runs the philanthropic organization The Giving Lens, leading teams of photographers on international adventures around the world, combining photo-education workshops with humanitarian and documentary work. She also holds a BFA in Creative Writing. Kate quit her "real" job as a youth worker in 2011 to pursue a full-time awesome life, which, aside from travel, includes 16 hour work days, strong coffee, an obese cat, and one fairly excellent husband.

Mary Sojourner Writing Faculty

Mary Sojourner (Writing Faculty)

Mary is a writer with seven nationally published books (the latest coming out in August 2014 from Torrey House Press) and has been mentoring writers since 1990 at writing conferences, universities, colleges, and for private students. She wrote her first novel when she was 46, fought her first environmental battle that same year, ran her first river when she was 51, started rock climbing when she was 55, was awarded Distinguished Writer in Residence at Arizona State University in 2007, and likes to solo hike and camp as often as she can. She works with her student's fiction, creative non-fiction, novels, and poetry with respect and a fierce eye for quality. Mary's students tell her that working with her takes them down a wild path to their real stories. She teaches that the deepest stories originate in place.

Emma Thieme Writing Faculty

Emma Thieme (Writing Faculty)

Emma is a Matador Network contributing editor and MatadorU writing faculty member. She holds a degree in journalism with a focus in women’s studies. Emma comes from Maine, a place of wide-open spaces, yet she’s become a master of living in small boxes, including a 27-foot sailboat in the Caribbean, an off-the-grid cabin in rural Maine, and a rented closet-sized room in a men’s halfway house. She enjoys driving long distances through nothing and looking mysterious in dim-lit dive bars. She’s also a yoga teacher, an amateur motorcyclist, and a leather worker.

Cathy Brown Writing Faculty

Cathy Brown (Writing Faculty)

Cathy is a full-time travel writer and editor specializing in Latin America. She currently lives in the Andes of Patagonia with her three kids, covering luxury travel for Luxury Latin America, adventure and family travel for Matador Network and the Adventure Travel Trade Association, and writing guidebooks for Fodor's and World Travel Guide. In addition, she has edited Escape From America and Culture Trip. Cathy works closely with the tourism boards of Mexico, Argentina, Chile, Peru and Ecuador, and collaborates with LAN airlines. Her current passions include surfing, shamanism, old-school Polaroid photography, mountain climbing, natural construction and organic gardening.

Blaze Nowara Filmmaking Faculty

Blaze Nowara (Filmmaking Faculty)

Blaze is a documentary filmmaker whose work has dealt with a variety of issues ranging from peacemaking among civil war refugees in North Sumatra, immigrant victims of domestic violence in the USA, to alternatives to violence within a medium security prison in Dublin. In addition, he is a facilitator of conflict resolution workshops, most recently in Kathmandu. Blaze's work has been presented at conferences worldwide and film festivals nationwide.

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  • FUNDAMENTALS OF TRAVEL WRITING

    Learn:
    • how to craft a travel story
    • to become versatile with different story forms
    • how to develop your personal brand and following
    • how to pitch editors and collaborate with other writers
    • much more
  • FUNDAMENTALS OF TRAVEL PHOTOGRAPHY

    Learn:
    • how to unlock the power of your camera
    • exposure, composition, and lighting
    • organizing and editing techniques
    • how to compile your portfolio and publish it online
    • much more
  • FILMMAKING

    Learn:
    • different framing techniques
    • how to capture better audio
    • how to edit your travel films
    • how to build your brand and find work
    • much more
  • ADVANCED TRAVEL WRITING

    Learn:
    • how to write on controversial topics
    • best practices when you're on assignment
    • pacing, structure, and transitions for longform / feature stories
    • how to thrive as a travel writer in the digital age
    • much more
  • ADVANCED TRAVEL PHOTOGRAPHY

    Learn:
    • how to tell a story through photo essays
    • advanced post-processing techniques
    • how to develop your brand and market yourself
    • how to pitch editors and publish your work
    • much more
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