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In The News

Summer 2019

Kristen Farris
Kristen Farris

Welcoming New Faculty

The Department of Communication studies is pleased to introduce three new faculty members to the Texas State community.
 

Dr. Kristen Farris will begin a position as an Assistant Professor in the Department of Communication Studies. Dr. Farris completed her PhD in Communication Studies at the University of Texas-Austin in May 2017, MA from Texas State University in 2009, and BA from Stephen F. Austin State University in 2006. Currently a Senior Lecturer and Basic Course Director for the Department of Communication Studies, Dr. Farris trains and supervises approximately 30 graduate assistants each semester in the department’s award-winning General Education Core course, Fundamentals of Human Communication. Kristen’s instructional communication expertise focuses upon techniques for assessing student's learning and communication skill development, teacher/student interpersonal relationships, and students’ transition to college. Recent publications appear in the Journal of Family CommunicationHigher Education, and the Basic Communication Course Annual as well as chapters in the Oxford Research Encyclopedia of Communication and the Handbook of Instructional Communication

Manu Pokharel
Manu Pokharel

Dr. Manusheela Pokharel will join as an Assistant Professor in the department. Dr. Pokharel completed her Bachelor of Science in Nursing from Purwanchal University in Nepal and an M.A. in Health Promotion & Education from the University of Utah. She recently completed her Ph.D. in Communication with an emphasis in health communication at the University of Utah. Prior to attending graduate school, she developed her clinical knowledge and experience working as a Registered Nurse, both as a Nursing Instructor at the ANPC College of Health Sciences and as a Field Officer for the non-governmental organization, Youth for World Nepal (YWN). Her primary research program investigates the persuasive impact of visual message features on knowledge, attitudes, and behavior in the context of cancer prevention and control. Dr. Pokharel’s published research appears in Addiction Research & TheoryJournal of Dermatological ScienceJournal of Health Communication, and Risk Analysis.

Jasmine Austin
Jasmine Austin

Ms. Jasmine Austin will join the department in the spring of 2020 as an Assistant Professor. Ms. Austin completed her B.A. at the University of Mary Hardin Baylor and her M.A. at the University of Wyoming. She is currently a doctoral candidate at the University of Oklahoma and will complete her Ph.D. in fall of 2019. Her research focuses upon organizational socialization and interethnic communication, with a particular interest in the socialization experiences of historically underserved and systematically marginalized communities. Ms. Austin’s published research appears in Counselor Self-Care, Health Communication, and Prejudice, Stigma, Privilege, and Oppression: A Behavioral Health Handbook.

Steven Beebe
Steven Beebe

Faculty Accolades

 

Steven Beebe discovered an unpublished, unknown manuscript from C.S. Lewis while conducting research over the summer. What appeared to be two unrelated entries constitute a 14-line poem in classic sonnet form reflects Lewis' belief that because of one's faith a person sees the world differently. A Lewis handwriting expert estimated the poem was written between 1934–1939. Steven recently signed a contract for his book, C.S. Lewis and the Craft of Communication, scheduled for publication in 2020.

Ann Burnette
Ann Burnette

Ann Burnette was selected as a recipient of the 2019 Everette Swinney Faculty Senate Excellence in Teaching Award. This award is given annually by the faculty senate in honor of former senator and longtime senate chair Dr. Everette Swinney. She and Wayne Kraemer presented the paper “Representing or Hispandering?: Beto O’Rourke, political identity, and identification” to the Alta Conference on Argumentation in Alta, Utah.

Michael Burns
Michael Burns

Michael Burns accompanied 40 undergraduate students, 4 graduate students, and 4 other faculty from the College of Fine Arts and Communication to London and Paris for a study abroad in May. The undergraduate students took COMM 1310: Fundamentals of Human Communication course, while the graduate students enrolled in an instructional communication seminar course. Michael presented two mock-lectures for the Bobcat Preview note taking sessions, speaking to 800 freshmen about technology's impact on relationships and also provided them with advice for a successful freshmen year. He was also a keynote speaker at the Ecosystems conference in Fargo, North Dakota. He spoke with faculty and staff running entrepreneur programs and centers from around the country about CoSearch and the value of interdisciplinary research in community development.

Stephanie Dailey
Stephanie Dailey

Stephanie Dailey manuscript “Personal-organizational processes in workplace health promotion: Understanding wellness program participation in China” was published in the International Journal of Communication. She also published “An examination of psychosocial factors associated with malicious online trolling behaviors” in Personality and Individual Differences. Stephanie also shared some of her social media research on the Super Awesome Science Show, an award-winning Canadian podcast. 

Elizabeth Eger and Bentley
Elizabeth Eger and Bentley

Elizabeth Eger as featured by Austin Pets Alive! in their video about their volunteer dog walking program. For the past year, Dr. Eger has volunteered with APA! the country's largest no-kill animal shelter, at both locations supporting rescue dogs. 

Kristen Farris accompanied 40 undergraduate students, 4 graduate students, and 4 other faculty from the College of Fine Arts and Communication to London and Paris for a study abroad in May. The undergraduate students took COMM 1310: Fundamentals of Human Communication course, while the graduate students enrolled in an instructional communication seminar course. 

She recently had “Nursing assistant perceptions of their role in the resident experience” accepted for publication in Nursing and Health Sciences.

Rebekah Fox
Rebekah Fox

Rebekah Fox was the recipient of the Presidential Award for Excellence in Service, recognizing her superior service to the University, profession, and the community. She also had “Nursing assistant perceptions of their role in the resident experience” accepted for publication in Nursing and Health Sciences.

Maureen Keeley
Maureen Keeley

Maureen Keeley published a book chapter entitled “Mothers and daughters end of life communication” in Constructing Motherhood and Daughterhood: Communicating Across Generations with M.A. alums Mark Generous and Lauren Lee. She recently submitted a chapter co-authored with M.A. alum Hannah Jones entitled “Families interacting in the health care context” for the book Health Communication Theory. She published an article entitled “Final conversations” in the Macmillan Encyclopedia of Intimate and Family Relationships: An Interdisciplinary Approach. Maureen recently had “A Critical Book Review of Health and Illness in Close Relationships” accepted for publication in the journal Health Communication. She also had “Conversations about death with those who experience it the most” accepted for publication in Qualitative Research Reports in Communication. The article was co-authored with M.A. alum Trevor Kauer.

Wayne Kraemer and Ann Burnette

Wayne Kraemer and Ann Burnette presented the paper “Representing or Hispandering?: Beto O’Rourke, political identity, and identification” to the Alta Conference on Argumentation in Alta, Utah.

Phil Salem

Philip Salem published the second edition of his book, Human Communication Technology.

Melinda Villagran
Melinda Villagran

Melinda Villagran was a finalist selected to present a “Big Idea” proposal to upper administration and external guests. Her presentation focused on the need for the establishment of a permanent Center for Translational Health Research and Innovation. Her proposal, entitled “Creating a Healthy Future U,” was ultimately one of those chosen for the next comprehensive fundraising campaign. 

Student Accolades

Undergraduate student Brandi Mitchell presented a paper "Fighting for a New Free World" on engaged organizing to end human trafficking at the Aspen Engaged Conference in July 2019. Brandi developed her paper with mentorship from Dr. Elizabeth K. Eger after taking COMM 3319: Organizational Communication.

 

Graduate student and BA alumnus, Luke Dye was selected as a panel reviewer for the upcoming conference of the National Communication Association to be held in Baltimore, MD.