Ph.D. Communication Studies (emphasis in Rhetoric), University of Kansas (2011)
M.A. Communication Studies (emphasis in Political Communication), University of Kansas (2007)
B.A. Applied Communication and Theater, Creighton University (2002)
It is a genuine pleasure to join the Winona State family. As a new faculty member, I am impressed with the strong spirit of community the defines WSU and the kind supportive learning environment that has been created for both students and faculty. After spending the last 5 years as a roving adjunct teaching at a variety of institutions in my home state of California, I am happy to have found a home here in Minnesota. I am certain this California girl will even get used to winter. When I am teaching I am likely to be found walking my dog, "Nutmeg” around Lake Winona, baking, or crafting.
I am passionate about teaching and I believe that my primary job as an instructor is to give students the tools they need to be critical thinkers and productive members of society. I am a proponent of active learning and use multiple methods to encourage interaction and discussion on issues present in the course curriculum. I draw from current events to demonstrate the relevance of concepts ranging from classical rhetorical theory to modern argumentation. I am committed to creating a learning environment that is both engaging and rigorous. I devise lesson plans and assignments that are designed to both challenge and empower students. It is my hope that when a student completes a class with me s/he leave with a greater understanding of the power of communication as tool for both the heart and the mind, and with conviction that the student can use that power to understand the world and to make it a better place.
As a scholar, I am primarily interested in examining the relationship of myth and narrative in the formation of the arguments of social movements. My dissertation explored the role of ritual in the Roman Catholic Womanpriest movement. I have published works looking at the connection between popular press and religion as well works derived from my dissertation. I am active in both the regional and national conferences, where I regularly present. I have served as chair and program planner for several divisions of the Central States Communication Association and am currently vice-chair of the Freedom of Expression and Legal Communication division for the Western States Communication Association.
Courses Taught at Winona State
CMST 191: Introduction to Public Speaking
CMST 192: Introduction to Speech Communication
Courses Taught at Other Institutions
Introduction to Human Communication
Critical Thinking and Small Group Communication
Business and Professional Communication
Introduction to Rhetoric and Social Influence
Introduction to Health Communication