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Kurt Braddock Briefs Pentagon

Dr. Kurt Braddock, Ph.D. 2012, provided a briefing to the Pentagon covering his research on methods for Developing Counter-Terrorism Narratives.

“I have recently started a line of research in which I want to develop practical, actionable, theory-based guidelines for use in the field to counter violent extremism”, Braddock said. “The first paper that I wrote in this research agenda relates to the production and distribution of counter-narratives to reduce support for terrorism. It was recently accepted for publication in Studies in Conflict and Terrorism An online version of the document was posted online on November 9th, and within a few days, my co-author (Dr. John Horgan) heard from Dept. of Defense personnel about the possibility of briefing them on the paper. Given that it is my line of research and I am first author on the work, I was tapped to do a teleconference to brief individuals from all over the Department of Defense on the paper, and to respond to questions related to counter-narratives and how they might be used against groups like ISIS.”

“…the content of the paper that I presented relates to (a) how to analyze terrorist narratives to recognize and understand that ideas that underpin them, (b) how to incorporate themes into counter-narratives that challenge the themes in the terrorist narratives, and (c) how to distribute those counter-narratives to populations at risk for radicalization to counter violent extremism within those populations.”

CAS Student Marshall James Hutchison Accepted to Penn State Law

Our Spring 2015 Student Marshall James Hutchison has been accepted to Penn State Law on a $60,000 scholarship. He will also be a candidate for their joint MBA program. Way to go, James!

Jessica Kurr receives Top Student Paper Award from The American Society for the History of Rhetoric

At the National Communication Association's annual convention in Las Vegas this November, Jessica Kurr was presented with the Top Student Paper Award from The American Society for the History of Rhetoric for her paper "Skotison: The Dark Rhetorical Style of Fedspeak." Way to go, Jessica!

Dr. Rosa Eberly appears on KCRW's and PRI's "To The Point" to discuss public violence

On Wednesday our own Dr. Rosa Eberly was on KCRW's and PRI's "To The Point" with, among others, John Nichols of The Nation. The topic was public violence. It was poignant and sadly very timely, as during show's airing the news of the San Bernardino shootings broke.

You can listen to a recording of the show here:

CAS Fighting the Threat of Antibiotic Resistant Bacteria

CAS students, advisees, and professors steered a seminar on the leading threat to public health that was attended by over 250 students and over 50 local providers on Nov 17th. The seminar covered the latest social, biological, and clinical science on the emergence and spread of antibiotic-resistant bacterial infections. Over 2 million infections occur a year in the United States, causing thousands of deaths. The photograph shows two PSU undergraduate students, Kaitlin Shartle and Lydia Glick, with Dr.

Rachel Levine, the physician general of Pennsylvania. CAS faculty, such as Smith and MacGeorge, and their students are conducting health communication research to guide interventions to address this leading threat to public health. Kaitlin and Lydia have been involved in this research, interned with the Department of Health, and conducted evidence-based workshops on the topic in the community, such as the event at Bennett childcare center (

Undergraduate students interested in getting involved in health communication research related to antibiotic resistance should contact Dr. Rachel Smith (

CAS Student Carrie Rein founds non-profit organization DreamTeen: Bringing Childhood Dreams to Foster Teens

For years Penn State student Carrie Rein had been pondering a single idea. “It is honestly impossible for me to pinpoint how I came up with the idea of DreamTeen,” she said, but she knew that somehow, one day, she would take foster children to Disney World.

Foster children are often subjected to many forms of neglect and abuse in foster care, severely affecting their mental health and
development, and lessening their chances of growing into a successful adult. “I decided it was time to start a nonprofit. During this time, I was in Bryan Blankfield's CAS100 [public speaking] class. Our last speech involved discussing a problem and a solution. Before writing my speech, I told Bryan I was in the process of starting a nonprofit, and asked if I could take advantage of this last speech to practice speaking about it in front of an audience. Using everything we learned in CAS100 about writing an effective speech, I wrote my first of many speeches to spread the word about my nonprofit.”

Carrie founded DreamTeen in June 2014, and received 501c(3) status a month later. Today, she is partnered with Children’s Aid and Family Services, hoping to raise enough money to bring some of their Professional Parent Homes (staffed homes serving adolescents in foster care between the ages of 13-18) on an all-expense-paid vacation to Disney World through the program DreamOrlando. “We strive to become a life-long family to these foster youth and support them through the transition process and all other life events,” Carrie said. “I am still using the effective communication skills I learned in CAS100 to form partnerships with other businesses, speak in front of other organizations, and speaking on camera. Aside from the direct skills I learned in CAS100, the indirect confidence I gained during that semester continually helps me fight through any nervousness I feel before presenting my nonprofit in front of my peers and other crowds.”

Carrie also started the DreamTeen club at Penn State, getting other students involved in supporting foster youth. They are planning the first annual DreamTeen event in April 2016. If you would like to get involved with the DreamTeen Club or the nonprofit contact Carrie at

The Department of Communication Arts and Sciences applauds Carrie for her amazing and inspiring work!

LJ Shen and Jim Dillard selected for 2015 Distinguished Article Award

Professors LJ Shen and Jim Dillard have been selected for the 2015 Distinguished Article Award conferred by the National Communication Association’s Communication and Social Cognition Division.  Division Chair Matt McGlone said that their article in Review of Communication Research titled “Threat, fear, and persuasion: Review and critique of questions about functional form” was selected from “an unusually large set of nominees this year, all reporting exemplary scholarship.” Professors Shen and Dillard will receive their award November 21st in Las Vegas at the annual meeting of the National Communication Association.

Jeremy Engels appears on the radio program “A Public Affair” out of Madison, Wisconsin to discuss his new book “The Politics of Resentment”

From WORT 89.9 FM out of Madison, Wisconsin:

Pledge Edition: Rhetoric and violence in “Politics of Resentment”

To continue this week with our fall pledge drive, Karma Chavez talks with Jeremy Engels, author “The Politics of Resentment.” His new book looks at the relationship between rhetoric and violence by examining events in U.S. history.

Jeremy Engels is an Associate Professor of Communication Arts and Sciences at Penn State University. His research investigates the rhetorical foundations of democratic practices, and their beauty, ugliness, and perplexity.

Recent Publication by J. Michael Hogan and Jessica A. Kurr

Our own J. Michael Hogan and Jessica A. Kurr recently published a white paper on "The Future of the Basic Course in Communication." The white paper summarizes the findings of a special double session held last spring at the 106th Annual Easter Communication Association Convention, "Deliberation: Philadelphia." The Center for Democratic Deliberation (CDD) was invited by the First Vice President of ECA, Kanan Sawyer, to facilitate the event featuring more than thirty communication scholars and teachers.

The White Paper is available at

Stephen Browne wins the National Communication Association's Distinguished Scholar Award!

Stephen Browne, Professor of Communication Arts and Sciences at Penn State, has won the NCA Distinguished Scholar Award!

The NCA Distinguished Scholar Award was created in 1991 to recognize and reward NCA members for a lifetime of scholarly achievement in the study of human communication. Recipients are selected to showcase the communication profession. The award is supported by the Mark L. Knapp Distinguished Scholar Fund. Since 1992, those recognized as NCA Distinguished Scholars nominate and elect members to join this select group.


"I am of course gratified by the award," Browne said, "but it is really testimony to the superb scholars and departmental support I have benefited from throughout my career at Penn State."

Congratulations Stephen!