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Former and Current Students on the Job Market

Dr. Lauren R. Camacci

Ph.D., Penn State University, Fall 2017
M.A., Penn State University, Spring 2014

Rhetorical Criticism; Critical Masculinities; Popular Culture Studies; Presidential Rhetoric

Lauren Camacci is a rhetorical critic and critical masculinities scholar with a particular interest in popular culture and the U.S. presidency. Her research interrogates how hegemonic masculinity is reflected in and shapes the U.S. presidency and U.S. popular culture; her work often studies at the intersections of the two. Dr. Camacci's dissertation examined the presidential rhetoric of Richard Nixon through three case studies, contending that one ought to consider Nixon's rhetoric as metonymic of mainstream white masculinity of his time and as responsible for creating a vocabulary for maintaining white, male dominance in a rapidly changing U.S. socio-political context. Dr. Camacci is also a rigorous and regular contributor to the growing interdisciplinary field of Harry Potter Studies, where most recently her work was published in Inside the World of Harry Potter (2018).

Dr. Camacci is also an active teacher and participates in service to the field. She has taught over twenty sections of public speaking and helped revamp the "Persuasion and Propaganda" course, having now taught the class three times. She has served as the President of the CAS Department’s Graduate Student Forum, and as a reviewer for the Public Address, and Feminist & Women's Studies, and Critical & Cultural Studies Divisions of the National Communication Association. Dr. Camacci also served as Dr. Michele Kennerly's 2015-2016 Assistant Director of the Basic Course. During her tenure as Assistant Director, she facilitated and improved the Semi-Annual Public Speaking Contest, increasing its publicity, working with ITS to create a webpage for the Contest, and moving the Contest to a larger venue, in addition to creating a “transition” packet for future Assistants.


Kasey A. Foley

Ph.D., Penn State University, Expected May 2020
M.A., John Carroll University, 2016
B.S., John Carroll University, 2014

Health communication; Interpersonal communication; Persuasion and Support; Advice

Kasey Foley is a communication scientist whose research focuses on interpersonal communication in health contexts, with an emphasis on strategic messaging to educate, motivate, and support public engagement in health issues. Much of her work examines providers’ treatment advice, patient reception of such advice, and how to improve advice processes and outcomes. Kasey’s dissertation examines the impact of primary care advising (i.e., argumentation, sequencing, and delivery) on emerging adult patient evaluations and behaviors. Her work has been published or accepted in academic outlets including the Journal of Language and Social Psychology, Medical Science Educator, and Media Psychology.

The aim of Kasey's work is to assist health providers in their efforts to effectively counsel their patients, and she pursues this work with an interdisciplinary, team-based approach. Kasey has contributed to the design, management, and research products of multiple large-scale grants from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and Merck & Company, Inc., each aimed at addressing strategies for improving antibiotic stewardship and thereby reducing rates of antibiotic-resistant infections nationally. In addition to her work on antibiotic stewardship, Kasey has coordinated multiple studies testing the efficacy and feasibility of medical scribe interventions in outpatient pediatric and adult primary care.

Kasey was the first communication scientist to receive the Translational Science Fellowship Program (2018), offered in collaboration by Penn State Clinical and Translation Science Institute and Penn State College of Medicine. She has also received the Superior Teaching and Research Award (2019) and the Research and Grant Support Office Dissertation Award (2019) from the Penn State College of Liberal Arts.

Kasey serves as the Principal Investigator Liaison and Project Coordinator for the Student Health Research Initiative funded by Penn State’s Huck Institutes for the Life Sciences and the Social Science Research Institute. She is also assisting in the development of a new, team-taught NIH-funded graduate course called “Communication in the Life Sciences” which integrates faculty from genetics, veterinary and biomedical sciences to disseminate science communication theory to life science researchers. Kasey has served as President of the CAS Department’s Graduate Student Forum and Graduate Student Representative for a CAS Department and Huck Institutes for Life Sciences co-hire search committee. She has taught courses on Interpersonal Communication, Communication Theory, and Health Advocacy.


Dr. Jeremy David Johnson

f Ph.D., Penn State University, Spring 2018
M.A., Penn State University, Summer 2014

Digital Rhetoric; Rhetorical Theory & Criticism; Argumentation;
Rhetoric of Science & Technology

Jeremy David Johnson is a digital rhetorician whose research focuses on algorithms and networked civic engagement. Employing a mixture of textual criticism, rhetorical ethnography, and ecological tracing, he theorizes movement and change in networked rhetorics. His in-progress manuscript Algorithmic Architects investigates the role of algorithms in shaping networked rhetorics. Working from ancient Greek rhetoric—in the development of the term  kosmos—to information theory and rhetorical conceptions of agency, the project contends that algorithms are world-makers, crafting networked spaces based on the desires and biases of human programmers and users. His work has appeared in the journal  Argumentation & Advocacy as well as the edited volumes  Ancient Rhetorics and Digital Networks and  Theorizing Digital Rhetoric, with chapters forthcoming in  Networking Argumentation and Information: Keywords. Jeremy’s research has been supported by the Penn State University Graduate Fellowship (2012-2013), Center for Democratic Deliberation Dissertation Fellowship (2016-2017), and Center for Humanities and Information Predoctoral Fellowship (2017-2018).

In the classroom, Jeremy has taught each of Penn State’s varieties of Public Speaking (including online sections), as well as Persuasion & Propaganda and Argumentation. Jeremy has administered or coached the Speech & Debate Society in various capacities over the past seven years. He has held a variety of service positions, including as the graduate representative on Penn State’s faculty committee, and has reviewed for the Journal of Contemporary Rhetoric and the Critical/Cultural Studies division of the National Communication Association. Jeremy has been honored with CAS’s Carroll C. Arnold Award for Scholarly Excellence, the CDD’s Nancy and Joseph Birkle Student Engagement Award, and the Michael Calvin McGee Outstanding Graduate Student Paper Award from the 2017 Alta Argumentation Conference.


Youllee Kim

Ph.D., Communication Arts and Sciences, Pennsylvania State University, Expected 2020 
M.A. Sungkyunkwan University, 2015
B.A. Sungkyunkwan University, 2013

Health communication, Social influence, Persuasion, Community-based health interventions

Youllee Kim studies health communication with an emphasis on the social processes involved in information dissemination and behavior change. She joins with scholars who emphasize social determinants of health and collective perspectives to wellbeing, and is passionate about designing theory-driven health interventions that can improve health and wellbeing of vulnerable communities across the globe. Her research has appeared in Health Communication, Journal of Health Communication, Computers in Human Behavior, and Media Psychology.

Youllee's dissertation aims to understand how persuasive messages motivate collaborative efforts to solve community health issues. Through an experimental study that was conducted in the context of reducing lead contamination in Pennsylvania, she examines how message choices and community features facilitate communication with neighbors to seek for a better future. After completing the dissertation project, she plans to continue examining socially-situated communication phenomena with analyses that can address interdependence of the data such as spatial analysis and multilevel modeling.

In addition to research, Youllee has been active in teaching and service. She has taught courses on Social Influence, Communication Theory, and Effective Speech. She works to inspire growth in students by helping them apply what they have learned in the class to creatively solve questions, openly share knowledge with others, and actively contribute to the community. She has served as the Community Relations Chair for the CAS department’s Graduate Student Forum.


Kelly Marin

Ph.D., Penn State University, Summer 2020
M.A., University of Colorado Denver, Winter 2015

Rhetorical Theory & Criticism; Security/Surveillance Studies; Media Studies.

Kellie Marin is a rhetorical critic and theorist interested in how citizens are encouraged to participate in national security initiatives. Inspired by affect theory and embodied practices, her research examines how rhetoric enlists individuals to be civically engaged in democracy through various technological platforms. Kellie’s dissertation, specifically, explores anonymity as a rhetorical tool to potentially foster more collective political engagement despite its often negative reputation for circulating hate and fear. In post-9/11 culture where national security becomes a justification for broad-sweeping policies, her work is integral to understanding how dominant security practices manifest themselves in contemporary culture and how citizens can meaningfully engage, critique, and resist them. Kellie’s work has appeared in Communication and Critical/Cultural Studies, Rhetoric Society Quarterly, and is forthcoming in the special issue of “Ubiquitously Surveilled Bodies” in Screen Bodies: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Experience, Perception, and Display. Her research has been supported by the Center for Humanities and Information Predoctoral Fellowship (2019-2020).

In addition to her research, Kellie is an active teacher and scholar within the academic community. She has taught various Public Speaking courses both at Penn State and University of Colorado Denver. Along with these courses, she taught Introduction to Media Studies and Fundamentals of Communication at UCD and Persuasion & Propaganda at Penn State. Kellie has held a variety of service positions including serving on the editorial board for Secrecy and Society, reviewing for the Rhetorical and Communication Theory division, Public Address Division, and the Critical and Cultural Studies Division of the National Communication Association. As a scholar who believes research should bridge the gap between the academy and public scholarship, Kellie also has been invited to present her work at the Combating Terrorism Center as West Point. Additionally, she was nominated and selected to attend the 64 th annual National Security Seminar at the U.S. Army War College; an event that brings together diverse professionals to discuss the latest national security issues with officers in the U.S. international militaries.


Xi Tian

Ph.D., Penn State University, anticipated Spring 2019
M.S., Texas Christian University, Spring 2015
B.A., University of Missouri, Columbia, Spring 2013

Interpersonal Communication; Supportive Communication; Psychological and Physical Well-being

Xi Tian is a communication scientist specializing in interpersonal communication. Her research examines social support and well-being in the face of non-normative stressors, such as bereavement. Her recent work considers communication factors and social resources that promote resilience in different health contexts, including coping with miscarriage and managing the progression of a genetic disease (Alpha-1 antitrypsin deficiency). Her dissertation explores the role of narrative supportive communication in reducing resistance to social support and facilitating coping with the death of a parent. She uses an experimental design to manipulate narrative and person-centered messages in two studies; one is an online, between subjects experiment, and the other one is a laboratory interaction study. Her work has appeared in Communication Studies, Journal of Language and Social Psychology, and Death Studies.

In addition to her research, Ms. Tian has an active teaching and service profile. She has taught Effective Speech, Communication Theory, Communication Research Methods, Interpersonal Communication, and a Senior-level course on Family Communication and Research. She has served as the Community Relations Chair for the CAS Department's Graduate Student Forum, as the Communication Research Lab Coordinator for the CAS Department, and as a reviewer for the Journal of Social and Personal Relationships and Communication Quarterly.


Dr. Keren Wang

Ph.D., Penn State University, Summer 2018
Master of International Affairs, Penn State University, Spring 2013

Rhetorical Theory and Criticism; Political and Legal Communication; Transnational Human Rights Discourse

Keren Wang is a rhetorical theorist and political communication scholar. His published academic works cover topics such as transnational rhetorics, social change, rhetorics of law, human rights discourse, and citizenship practices. His research addresses the question of how collective memories shape contemporary discourses of unity and division at both local and global levels. More information about his research and work can be found at his personal website: http://sites.psu.edu/kerenw/.