MS-005 croppedMegan Sweas is a writer, editor and student—of life. Reporting allows her to explore big questions and everyday challenges. She works as a freelance journalist based in Los Angeles and an editor with the USC Center for Religion and Civic Culture.

Sweas is the author of Putting Education to Work: How Cristo Rey High Schools Are Transforming Urban Education (HarperOne, 2014). She writes about social and economic justice issues and world religions for publications such as GlobalPost, Religion News Service, National Catholic Reporter and Religion Dispatches. She traveled to Italy in 2014 to report on Europe’s immigration crisis as a recipient of the International Reporting Project’s religion reporting fellowship.

As CRCC’s editor and director of communications, Sweas manages the center’s website and helps its researchers communicate their findings. She previously covered politics and social issues as an editor for U.S. Catholic magazine, where she also ran the website.

A lifelong learner, Sweas has adapted to the changing media landscape. At Free Spirit Media, where she volunteered full-time for a year after college, she learned video production well enough to teach it and HTML well enough to build a website for the organization. In managing USCatholic.org, she made the magazine’s web presence more dynamic through multimedia and social media. She led the relaunch of crcc.usc.edu, coordinating with a team of developers. She continues to consult for JD Careers Out There, a site for which she helped build an audience from scratch.

Sweas earned a master’s degree in Specialized Journalism as an Annenberg Fellow at the University of Southern California. She graduated from the Medill School of Journalism at Northwestern University.

Sweas hopes her work has as great an impact on her readers as it has on her. She remains a strong supporter of youth media. Her work on the agricultural industry has made her a more conscientious grocery shopper. She enjoys experimenting with local produce in the kitchen, but she is still a better baker than cook. She balances her love of food with playing and coaching Ultimate and working out.

She also gives back to organizations that have been influential in her life, having served on an alumni committee for Amate House and a local board of Amigos de las Americas. She is board member of Journalism and Women Symposium (JAWS) and a member of Religion Newswriters Association. She launched a JAWS regional group in Southern California and chaired the 2014 conference in Palm Springs.

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