Faculty and staff achievements

Fall 2015 edition


Professor Barbara Barnett was selected as the 2016-2017 Budig Teaching Professor of Writing. Barnett also has published “The Babe/Baby Factor: Sport, Women, and Mass Media,” a chapter in the Routledge Handbook of Sport Communication.

Dean Ann Brill (left) with Judy Locy Wright at the KU Women's Hall of Fame induction ceremony.


Dean Ann Brill (left) with Judy Locy Wright at the KU Women's Hall of Fame induction ceremony.

Dean Ann M. Brill was inducted into the University of Kansas Women’s Hall of Fame, which has honored more than 200 exemplary KU alumnae, faculty and staff women since 1970. Read the story here. Brill also was initiated as a faculty member of Phi Kappa Phi, the nation's oldest, largest and most selective all-discipline honor society.  Brill was the keynote speaker for the Phi Kappa Phi initiation ceremony Nov. 20.

Associate Professor Genelle Belmas is co-author of a project, "Star-Spangled: The Flag as Tool of Protest and Nationalism," which has been accepted for presentation at the Popular Culture Association's annual meeting, March 22-25, 2016, in Seattle. The paper's co-author is Brian Larson, assistant professor at Georgia Tech.

Kerry Benson, strategic communication track chair, was nominated by the KU Senior Class of 2016 as a finalist for the Honor for Outstanding Progressive Educator, or H.O.P.E., Award. Benson has been a finalist for the award 10 times.

Assistant Professor Peter Bobkowski received the Pioneer Award at the National High School Journalism convention.


Assistant Professor Peter Bobkowski received the Pioneer Award at the National High School Journalism convention.

Assistant Professor Peter Bobkowski was one of six educators who received the National Scholastic Press Association's Pioneer Award at the National High School Journalism convention in Orlando, Florida. The award is the NSPA's top honor for journalism educators and honors those who have gone above and beyond to advance scholastic journalism through years of dedicated service. Read the news release here.

Associate Professor Yvonnes Chen is chair-elect of the Lawrence LiveWell Tobacco-Free Living work group. The work group is currently working on advocating for the expansion of the Lawrence Clean Indoor Air ordinance to include e-cigarettes. Also, Chen and Assistant Professor Laura Martin of the University of Kansas Medical Center received a $35,000 grant from The University of Kansas Cancer Center to study how adolescent smokers respond to e-cigarette advertising.

Assistant Professor Joseph Erba conducted a study exploring the college experiences of Latinos, who represent the largest racial/ethnic minority in the United States but are not graduating from college at the same rates as their peers. Erba’s study determined that media representations of Latinos play a role in how Latino students with different levels of racial/ethnic identification navigate the college experience, believe others on campus perceive them, and how they interact with non-Latino students. Read the KU News story here.

Pam Fine, Knight Chair in News, Leadership and Community, has been elected president of the American Society of News Editors. Read her speech to the ASNE here.

Associate Professor Mugur Geana discussed enrollment in cancer clinical trials and presented preliminary results of the Accrual to Cancer Clinical Trials Project at the Midwest Cancer Alliance midyear physicians meeting Nov. 13. The study, funded by Midwest Cancer Alliance and the University of Kansas Cancer Center, aims at developing an evidence-based strategic communication campaign to increase recruitment of patients into cancer clinical trials. Assistant Professor Joseph Erba is a co-investigator on the project. Geana also met with a delegation of researchers from the University of Costa Rica to discuss his recent research project on health communication about dengue fever in the province of Limon, Costa Rica. Read the story here.

Associate Professor David Guth's one-hour documentary, “Amber Waves of Change: Hard Times on the High Plains,” aired June 28 on Kansas Public Radio. Listen here. Guth's research paper, "High Stakes in the High Plains: Attitudes of Rural Editors and Publishers in Areas Facing Depopulation," has been accepted for publication in Grassroots Editor, the quarterly journal of the International Society of Weekly Newspaper Editors (ISWNE).

Associate Professor Carol Holstead's book chapter, “Magazine Design: Defining the Visual Architecture,” has been published in the Routledge Handbook of Magazine Research. The book is the only comprehensive review of academic research on magazines. The book was released in July. Read the abstract or download the chapter here.

Associate Professor Tien-Tsung Lee, Masahiro Yamamoto of the University of Wisconsin-La Crosse, and Weina Ran of UW-La Crosse are authors of a study in which they analyzed survey data from Japan that showed two key community factors predicted whether people were likely to mistrust the media. Read the story here.  

Professor Chuck Marsh’s article, “The Strange Case of the Goddess Peitho: Classical Antecedents of Public Relations’ Ambivalence Toward Persuasion,” appeared in The Journal of Public Relations Research. He presented a paper titled “Game Theory Innovations and the Fully Functioning Society” to the International Public Relations Conference in Barcelona. Also, the Pontifical University of the Holy Cross in Rome has invited Marsh to speak on communication ethics at the 2016 International Church Communications Seminar in Rome.

Academic Advisor Dan McCarthy co-wrote the foreword to “Beyond the Blank Pages” by Samantha Bell. The textbook presents vital English composition skills while promoting student advocacy. 

Lisa McLendon, coordinator of the Bremner Editing Center, had a national audience Aug. 20 with her “Inner Life of Grammar” webinar for the Poynter Institute’s NewsU. The webinar was broadcast from KU’s Media Crossroads. It was McLendon’s third webinar for NewsU; she is also one of the instructors for the NewsU course Fundamentals of Editing. Read the KU News story here. Watch and listen to the webinar here [paywall].

Assistant Professor Jonathan Peters' academic article, “The Sovereigns of Cyberspace and State Action: The First Amendment's Application (or Lack Thereof) to Internet Content Hosts,” was accepted for publication in the William & Mary Bill of Rights Journal, the third-ranked constitutional law journal in the United States. Peters also published 10 columns for the Columbia Journalism Review about press-freedom issues and one column for Sports Illustrated about the NHL. Read the CJR columns here. Read the Sports Illustrated column here.

Associate Dean Scott Reinardy has been awarded a book contract through Routledge for “Journalism’s Lost Generation: The Undoing of U.S. Newspaper Newsrooms.” The book is an accumulation of more than a decade of research examining newspaper journalists and their newsrooms. Reinardy also was interviewed by Radio Free Europe about his study, “The New Women’s Movement: Burnout, Workload Driving Females from U.S. Newspaper Newsrooms.” The paper was presented at the International Communication Association conference in May and has been submitted for publication.

Assistant Professor Hyunjin Seo’s paper, “Network Approach to Regime Type and Global Internet Connectedness,” has been accepted for presentation to the Digital and Social Media Division at the Hawaii International Conference on System Sciences (HICSS) Jan. 5-8, 2016, in Kauai, Hawaii. The paper examines the relationship between regime type, country access to the internet at both domestic and global levels, and economic development via a longitudinal network analysis of economic, population and internet data from 2002-2011.  Also, Seo’s manuscript, “Network Approach to Internet Bandwidth Distributions,” has been accepted for publication in Computational Social Networks.

Associate Professor Max Utsler (from left), with Kansas City journalists Dave Helling, Christa Dubill and John Holt (BSJ 1981).


Associate Professor Max Utsler (from left), with Kansas City journalists Dave Helling, Christa Dubill and John Holt (BSJ 1981).

Associate Professor Max Utsler moderated a panel Sept. 23 on “The Changing Role of the Journalist.” The panel was part of the Olathe Chamber of Commerce 2015 Business Lunch Series. Panelists included Christa Dubill of KSHB, Channel 41; John Holt of WDAF, Channel 4; and Dave Helling of The Kansas City Star. Dubill and Holt are both KU graduates. Utsler also wrote a story for MLB.com about former Kansas City Royals players teaching throwing and fielding skills as part of an Major League Baseball and U.S. Conference of Mayors' initiative called Play Ball KC. Read the story here.


Middle-school students participated in the Duke TIP workshop.


Middle-school students participated in the Duke TIP workshop.

Associate Professor Doug Ward led a two-day workshop on digital storytelling for 14 middle school students in the Duke TIP program. Chandler Boese, a J-School student, assisted Ward with the workshop. Watch a video of the workshop here. Also, Ward was a guest on the NPR program “AirTalk with Larry Mantle,” which airs on KPCC in Los Angeles. He spoke during a segment on the high price of textbooks and a California State University-Fullerton professor's refusal to use a department-assigned book.


Assistant Professor Hyunjin Seo (left) and Associate Professor Genelle Belmas (right) at the Summit on Navigating Digital Futures.


Assistant Professor Hyunjin Seo (left) and Associate Professor Genelle Belmas (right) at the Summit on Navigating Digital Futures.

Assistant Professor Hong Tien Vu (middle) and Assistant Professor Peter Bobkowski (right) at the Summit on Navigating Digital Futures.


Assistant Professor Hong Tien Vu (middle) and Assistant Professor Peter Bobkowski (right) at the Summit on Navigating Digital Futures.

KU's Summit on Navigating Digital Futures, a symposium encouraging research collaborations in digital-related areas, was organized by faculty from the William Allen White School of Journalism and Mass Communications, the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences, and the School of the Arts. Associate Professor Genelle Belmas was on the planning committee for the Sept. 18 symposium, which encouraged faculty to share ongoing research and make interdisciplinary connections within the KU community that could lead to collaboration, innovation, and grant funding.