Building the future at the intersections of spirituality, media-technology, and
Clarissa Joan Middleton is an interactive media designer and the Founder and Chief Creative Officer of The Being Academy, a Christian-based media technology company extending the impact of faith into the everyday life experiences of the believer. As a follower of Jesus Christ, an artist, and a business woman, Clarissa's mission is to build a better future at the intersections of spirituality, media technology, and social enterprise. She envisions a future that expands the capacity of the faithful to commune with God daily and experience life on Earth as it is in Heaven.
In the Fall of 2019, Clarissa’s interactive sanctuary experience, available through The Being Academy soft launched at the 2019 USC Games Expo. The wellness app was also displayed at the 2019 Missiology Lectures Conference: “Techno-Sapiens in a Networked Era: Becoming Digital Neighbors” hosted by Fuller Theological Seminary. The Being Academy's products and services for mental clarity, spiritual growth, and transformational wellness practices give unlimited access to The Gospel of Jesus Christ like you've never experienced it before.
This includes the leverage of XR/VR, AI, and Web3 interaction design as resources for teaching, preaching, and healing.
Mrs. Middleton is a 2022 - 2023 USC Dornsife Center for Religion and Civic Culture Reimagine Church Cohort Fellow. Her research “Cognitive Science, Belief, and Interactive Media as a Distribution Platform for Experiences that Enhance Human Development” is published by the USC Digital Libraries for public viewing. Clarissa’s work in virtual reality, non-linear storytelling, SAAS applications, digital publishing, and massive open online courses has been supported and featured by the USC Office of Religious Life, the USC Creative Media and Behavioral Health Center, The Max De Pree Center for Leadership, IntraVarsity Christian Fellowship, the USC Interactive Media and Games Division, and the IndieCade Games Conference 2019 at Santa Monica College.
As a Mellody Hobson Scholar, Clarissa's graduate studies were graciously supported by the George Lucas Family Foundation Endowed Student Support Fund for Diversity. From 2017 - 2018, Clarissa also served as a scholar-in-residence at the USC Media Institute for Social Change. Prior to her career in media, She worked as a senior financial analyst as AXA Equitable and a strategic business consultant for Impact America Fund. In 2019, she also served as a visiting scholar at the USC Creative Media and Behavioral Health Center under the direction of Marientina Gotsis. In 2020, she was a featured guest on The Theology of Work's podcast, "Making It Work" highlighting her professional journey from Finance to Media Arts.
Clarissa is a talented writer whose portfolio can be appreciated on Moguldom Media’s digital publication MadameNoire, a lifestyle publication catering to 9 million African American women monthly.
Clarissa served as Content and Communications Manager of The Max Depree Center for Leadership at Fuller Seminary from 2019 - 2020.
Her work as a content contributor and thought leader on Christian leadership in the marketplace can be explored here.
Clarissa lives in Newport Beach, California with her husband, Theodore, and their three children Genesis, Viva, and Theo III. She received her B.S in Finance, Cum Laude, from The Tobin College of Business at St. John’s University in 2009, and her MFA in Interactive Media from the USC School of Cinematic Arts in 2019. Fight On!