Rachel Johnson

Academic Advisor

Rachel Johnson

Rachel, born and raised in Brooklyn, New York, attended NYU-Tisch Maurice Kanbar Institute for Film & Television as a Martin Luther King, Jr. Scholar. She studied directing and screenwriting and produced films that went on to screen at many film festivals and win awards including the CINE Golden Eagle Award and an African Academy Movie Award. Rachel earned her Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in Film & Television Production with University Honors. She also holds an MA in Youth Studies from the City University of New York (CUNY) focusing on positive development, programming, and practice in learning spaces.

Rachel has fifteen years of experience in education and the arts. Her professional education background includes teaching, mentoring, and supporting scholars and emerging artists within Higher-education institutions, K-12 schools, and other education-based nonprofit organizations. Rachel also founded New Ambitions, a youth development organization, where she designed curricula and directed programming for K-12 schools in New York city.

Rachel has more than ten years of experience leading in various capacities, administering programs, and building initiatives that foster engagement, positive growth, scholarship, top-tier programming, and optimal success. She utilizes her experience in education, administration, and her transferable skills as a Director and Writer for film to achieve high-impact results. 

Rachel has volunteered for six years as an NYU Focus Mentor for first-year undergraduate students who identify as first-generation college students of color. She is an Advisor to The Collective, the Tisch-wide student organization designed to empower and unite Black artists studying at Tisch. She is also a mentor for the Institute of Performing Arts Students, Faculty, and Staff of Color Mentorship Program rooted in a common passion around the intersection of race, heritage, and culture within the arts. Rachel also serves on NYU Global Awards Fulbright Review Committees. 

Outside of her work at Tisch, Rachel pursues her passion for filmmaking and is currently developing original work.


BFA, Film & Television, New York University
MA, Youth Studies, City University New York