Welcome to my personal website! I am currently a PhD Candidate in Communication (Rhetoric and Political Culture) at the University of Maryland. Here’s a short introduction:
I am a rhetorical critic specializing in the intersections of elite sport and political culture in a U.S. context. I ground my research in the traditions of rhetorical theory, critical/cultural studies, and public address. My work contributes to the scholarly conversation in communication and critical/cultural studies and the rhetoric of sport aligned with the work that sees sport as a broader cultural form that merits serious attention from communication scholars. Similarly, my work reflects the interdisciplinary conversation of rhetoric and sport in critical theory and Physical Cultural Studies, work that engages in a “radically contextual” study of sport.
Following these scholarly threads, my past work has examined college sports as a microcosm and constitutive force of ideology, social identity, and cultural values. My dissertation explains, analyzes, and evaluates organizational rhetoric in the context of high-profile college sports in the land-grant context. The guiding question of my dissertation asks, how do interdependent discourse communities within the organization of big-time sport define the role of athletics in higher education? Specifically, I explore how these communities invoke and define the myth of the “student-athlete” through their discourse. It is important to answer these questions given the ongoing public controversies surrounding big-time college sport, especially as they implicate student-athletes.
You can read more about my research and publications here.
I have extensive teaching experiences in communication, rhetoric, and my specialty communication and sport. In all courses I teach, I aim to cultivate a lifelong appreciation of rhetoric. I begin every semester by presenting Kenneth Burke’s parlor scenario to my students, which describes an “unending conversation” taking place in a “parlor.” This scene symbolizes the broader public debates individuals may enter throughout the course of their lives. Burke insists that the conversations have no single origin or termination – an especially pertinent lesson for an undergraduate in a communication or rhetoric course. My mission is to facilitate a transformation from passivity to activity, where students grow from vessels collecting information to active agents critically contributing to important unending public conversations – the public conversations that may directly or indirectly impact their daily lives. Teaching the ancient through medieval, modern through contemporary, and postmodern or posthumanist theories of rhetoric fosters in students the communication skills necessary to become active agents in their lives. I believe that a rhetorical education can be empowering for all students, not just communication majors. When afforded the space to do so respectfully, the exchange of student ideas provides them the essential tools for both producing and critically analyzing academic and public discourse. At the end of any semester, many students articulate their enthusiasm to enter Burke’s parlor on their own accord, and I know I have done well to encourage them to participate in the unending conversations of their lives.
You can read more about my teaching here.
I have enthusiastically served and plan to continue to serve my scholarly communities. At Maryland, I founded our university’s graduate chapter of the Rhetoric Society of America and dedicated myself to fostering scholarly collaboration, mentoring undergraduate students, and providing resources to my peers through our activities. I have volunteered as a reviewer for the International Association for Communication and Sport (IACS) and various divisions of the National Communication Association (NCA), including rhetorical theory and communication and sport. I have served as the inaugural secretary for the NCA’s communication and sport division, which was a term that spanned over two years. Serving on various department and university-level committees at Maryland has reinforced the value and practice of interdisciplinary collaboration. I believe that engaging in department, disciplinary, and university service is crucial to the development of both self and community.