Professional Staff

Wayne Maikranz

M.A. Jounalism, B.S. Communications | 704-687-7135

Wayne MaikranzWayne Maikranz is a former copy editor for a daily newspaper in Indiana. In addition, he was a co-editor of a regional metropolitan magazine in Indiana and worked as a client service representative for an advertising firm. He was honored as UNC Charlotte’s 1992 Employee of the Year. In addition, Maikranz received the1993 Distinguished Magazine Adviser Award from CMA. He received a National Teaching Award in 1987 from the Poynter Institute for Media Studies. He previously served on the advisory program board for the Associated Collegiate Press Association. He co-authored The Guidebook of Magazine Fundamentals for the Associated Collegiate Press and designed The People of Route 601: Life in the Slow Lane, a book of photography by Lex Youngman.  In 2008, he was inducted into the College Media Advisers Hall of Fame.


As media adviser, Maikranz provides journalism training support and advice on legal, production and editorial content concerns. The adviser provides a support role and coordinates retreats and convention travel, oversees the office and business management functions and promotes student staff development. He also advises the Student Niner Media board.

Kelly Lusco Merges

Assistant Director, Student Media Marketing Advisor
B.A. - Mass Communication, Specialization in Public Relations | 704-687-7136

Kelly MergesSince joining the Student Niner Media staff in 2004, Merges has enjoyed her experiences motivating students in the areas of sales, marketing and promotions. She continues to work with the staff to sell and produce multimedia campaigns that help area businesses promote themselves to the ever-growing UNC Charlotte campus and surrounding community.

Merges graduated in 1996 from Nicholls State University in Thibodaux, Louisiana. She brought more than 12 years of experience in both the print and public relations industries, including serving as editor of two monthly entertainment magazines, The Grapevine andThe Navigator. Now, Merges has over 20 years of experience in the industry and enjoys sharing that knowledge and experience with her students.

The adviser works closely with the marketing department staff to develop sales strategies, client service and effective circulation and promotion of the individual media. The marketing department was recognized as the 2005 and 2007 Business and Advertising Student Staff of the Year from CNBAM. In addition, the 2005-2006 and 2007-2008 marketing directors were named Business Manager of the Year by CNBAM.

Megan Van Emmerik

Cordinator for Production and Graphic Design
B.F.A. - Art, Concentration in Graphic Design | 704-687-7138

Megan Van EmmerikVan Emmerik works with the students to produce promotional materials, advertisements and great looking designs. She is proficient in the Adobe suite design programs and shares her knowledge with the students. Van Emmerik is also the Radio Free Charlotte adviser and provides feedback on the DJ’s shows.

Van Emmerik is a graduate of UNC Charlotte (’15) and a Student Niner Media alum. While a student, Van Emmerik worked as the Creative Director and Layout Editor for the Niner Times. She was awarded the Shameka-Smith Hamilton award in 2015.

The production coordinator oversees layout and design projects for Student Niner Media, including all advertising production for student media marketing.  In addition, the production coordinator assists with training students in using desktop publishing software and design.

Laurie Cuddy

Business Manager, Student Media Marketing
B.S. - Accounting | 704-687-7137

Laurie CuddySince joining the Student Niner Media staff in 2012, Cuddy has enjoyed working with students in the Marketing department to generate advertising agreements, answer clients’ questions and garner new business.

In her position as business manager, she is responsible for all aspects of accounts receivable. From invoicing clients to working within state guidelines to collect revenue, Cuddy handles the finances for the Department of Student Niner Media.
Cuddy is a graduate of Penn State, where she received her Bachelor of Science degree in Accounting. She brings more than 15 years of experience in accounting from the private sector.

Danny Huffman

Office Manager | 704-687-7129