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College of Information and Communications

Library and Information Science

Current Doctoral Students

Following is a list of current School of Library and Information Science doctoral students, along with in many cases a brief summary of their educational background, work experiences, research interests, and teaching activities. 

Esra Abdoh

Esra Abdoh is an international student from Saudi Arabia. She earned her undergraduate degree in Computer Information Systems from Taibah University (Medina, Saudi Arabia), and an M.S in Information Technology from Southeastern Louisiana University (Louisiana, USA).

She interested to explore theoretical perspectives such as the impact of the work environment, types of information needs, and external influences such as culture and the impact of barriers. She has a year of student teaching experience in the School of Information Science in Taibah University in Saudi Arabia, and has earned a scholarship to fund a PhD. This experience gives her the opportunity to understand the nature of work in universities.

She is very motivated and enthusiastic to follow her career in Library and Information Science Research and to publish academic papers in as many highly-ranked journals as possible. Her experience as a teaching assistant has equipped her with skills to present and explain difficult principles for students and to socialize with them.

Jason Alston

Jason holds a B.A. in English from UNC-Wilmington and an MLS from North Carolina Central University. He was a reporter for the Henderson Daily Dispatch (NC), diversity resident librarian at UNC-Greensboro, and adult services librarian at Forsyth County Public Library (Winston-Salem, NC), before joining the doctoral program. His research interests include accreditation and curriculum issues, diversity, the digital divide, the positioning of libraries with respect to ‘hate’ groups, and library/mass media relationships. He has taught in the areas of information policy and ethics, management, public library systems, and management.

Celeste Â-Re

Celeste holds bachelor's degrees in psychology and physiology (Michigan State) as well as a master's in library and information science (Long Island University). She has served as a cultural worker in a variety of capacities: director of operations for the Virginia Arts Festival, a multi-city, cultural tourism event; technical director for Urban Bush Women, a community engagement, performance ensemble; production manager for EVIDENCE, a dance company integrating Africana diasporic corporeality with historiography. She has also held a variety of positions in the information field: library assistant, St. John’s Riverside Hospital Cochran School of Nursing (Yonkers, NY); video archives assistant, US Tennis Association; digital assistant, Digital Collections (USC); and library technician, National Audio-Visual Conservation Center. Her research interest focuses around digital curation, research justice, community informatics, and critical information literacy. She would like to explore transdisciplinary approaches to utilizing information and communications technology for asset mapping and preservation in communities displaced by gentrification.

She has lectured in the preservation planning/administration, online information services, and digital information infrastructure areas. 

Barbera S. Bischoff

Bobbie has earned an AGS in history from Brazosport College (TX), a bachelor's in interdisciplinary studies from the USC-Lancaster, and an MLIS from USC-Columbia. She has extensive experience as a teacher-librarian in Charleston County and has also worked as a mechanical engineering technician in the Nuclear Power Industry and as aquatics director at Leroy Springs Recreation Complex. Her research interests are at the intersection of archives (as a memory institution), management of the record, the cultural pursuit of knowledge to facilitate memory, and the transmission of memory within the material culture. In addition to her work as an aquatics instructor, she developed and taught numerous professional development courses in Charleston County School District, and was an adjunct instructor at Charleston Southern University, where she developed and taught the first web-based technology course.

Heather Braum

Heather holds a B.A. in political science (summa cum laude) from Oklahoma Baptist University and a M.L.S. from Emporia State University. Before joining the doctoral program, she worked for the Northeast Kansas Library System (Lawrence, Kan.) for many years, in the areas of technology support, cataloging, data management, interlibrary library loan, advocacy, and continuing education, including managing the NExpress Consortia Catalog for three years, an open source (Koha) ILS service used by 50 public and school library locations in the Northeast Kansas region. Her research interests include rural library impact, library advocacy, rural librarian education, open source software (OSS) usage in libraries, and open access to information in the legislative process. 

Constance M. Caddell

Constance earned a B.A. in history from Tuskegee University, a MBA in marketing from Colorado Technical University, and a MLS in archives and records management from North Carolina Central University. She has held internships with the Museum of Durham History, Durham County Library Archives (North Carolina Collection), and North Carolina Central University’s Archives. She received continuing education in the archives at the University of North Carolina in Chapel Hill. Her research interests include (1) advocating the value of libraries, archives, and museums to society (2) exploring the interconnection of libraries, archives, and museums and (3) researching the various methods of information behavior amongst the users of libraries, archives, and museums.

Sarah Chizari

Sara holds a bachelor's of science in IT engineering from Shiraz University of Technology (Iran), and an M.S. in information management from Sheffield University (UK). She served as an IT consultant and user experience leader at Hamkaran Company (Iran), instructional designer for the National Design Academy (UK), user experience researcher and designer for the Walker Institute at USC-Columbia, and user experience designer for the Aspire II project also at USC-Columbia. Her teaching experience includes the following courses: User-centered Design and Information Architecture, Information Architecture for Information Professionals, Introduction to Information Technology, Introduction to Library and Information Science, Digital Libraries, and Information and Society (as a guest lecturer). Her research interests focus on user experience, human-information interaction, and cross-cultural studies of information behavior.

April Dawkins

April holds a B.A. in history from Meredith College and an MLS from North Carolina Central University. She has experience in teaching a variety of high school social studies classes and has been a high school librarian. Her research interests focus on school librarianship and include reading habits, information seeking behaviors, and information literacy of young adults. She is also interested in the education and training of school librarians. Her current research revolves around materials selection policies and librarian self-censorship. She has taught Introduction to Information Literacy and Young Adult Materials.

Zachary Frazier

Zachary earned a B.A. in political science from Western Washington University and an MLIS from the University of South Carolina. His research studies how information is used in the creative process and focuses on new media, software design, and the web. In addition to his research, Zachary is also passionate about bringing user experience testing to libraries. He is the co-creator of Disaster Box, a technology developed for the 2014 ASIS&T student design competition, and a medalist at the 2016 IASlam.

Elizabeth Hartnett

Liz earned a B.S. in education (University of Missouri-Columbia) and MLIS (USC) degrees. She has served as library media specialist in the Richmond County Schools, and evening librarian at Augusta Technical College (both in Augusta, Georgia). Her research interests involve the changing role of the school libraries, particularly with regard to their impact on student learning, and their potential for improving learning by providing space for collaborative and experimental work. In particular, she is studying the benefits of ‘makerspace’ in libraries and other cultural institutions, and their connection to the development of critical skills and attitudes.  She has taught in the children’s materials area. 

Laura Haverkamp

Laura is in her 17th year as a high school Media Specialist at Dreher High School in Columbia, SC. She previously worked as an English teacher at C.A. Johnson High School in Columbia, and at John Jay High School in Brooklyn, N.Y. She earned a B.A. in English and Communication from Tulane University in New Orleans, an M.Ed. in Secondary English from George Mason University in Virginia, and an M.L.I.S. from USC-Columbia in 1999. Laura earned National Board Certification as a school librarian in 2003, and a renewal in 2013.

Laura also worked 7 years as a school based USC instructor for EDUC 402P, guiding early student teacher internships.  She admits to some level of subversion as she encouraged many student teachers to consider school librarianship. She would like to shift focus to teacher-librarian development. Laura’s research interests include the impact of one-to-one initiatives on student recreational reading, the impact of digitizing school libraries on student reading, and how those topics relate to student achievement.  


Cantrell Johnson

Cantrell holds a B.A. in communication (Central Connecticut State University) as well as master's degrees in counseling (Central Connecticut State University) and library science (Southern Connecticut State University). She has served in various capacities in library, higher education, and mental health settings.  Her teaching experiences have included library skills instruction and college success courses. Her research interests focus on issues relating to student user experiences in academic libraries. 

Anmol Kalsi

Anmol holds a B.A. in history from the University of Essex (UK), an M.A. in Contemporary History from the University of Bristol (UK), and an MSc in Information Management from the University of Sheffield (UK). He was a graduate trainee for Royal Holloway, University of London, and a senior research associate for the Macquarie Group in London, before joining the doctoral program. His research interests center around the nature of discourse in the media, and the role of the mass media in shaping the parameters of debate on issues such as the ‘war on terror,’ state surveillance, and civil liberties. He has taught in the areas of knowledge management, business information sources, information and society, and history and philosophy of the mass media.

Ramona La Roche

Ramona holds a BFA in photography and creative arts therapy from the School of Visual Arts in New York City.  She earned a MEd in Divergent Learning from Columbia College, SC. A published author, she has served as a K-12 arts educator in Georgetown and Charleston County School Districts, health educator, and arts therapist in a variety of settings in New York and the Carolinas. Her research focuses on cultural heritage of the Gullah community in the South Carolina Low Country and its historical connections to Barbados, West Indies. Other descriptors of her applied research interests include related cultural retentions, arts and artisans, genealogy, critical archival work (oral and family history), cemetery preservation, curriculum development, and the technological divide. View CV (pdf).

Karen Miller

Karen earned a B.A. in English (Furman), MBA (Furman/Clemson), JD (USC), and MLIS (USC) degrees. She had an extensive career in data processing and technology infrastructure management before joining the doctoral program. Her research interests include valuation of cultural heritage institutions, automated analysis of large data sets, digital libraries, digital information infrastructure, and preservation. She has taught in the digital information infrastructure, knowledge management, preservation planning/administration, digital libraries, information literacy and technology, and public library areas.

Porchia Moore


Wendy Moore

Wendy Moore holds a bachelor’s in English from Francis Marion University, a master’s in counseling from Webster University, and an MLIS from the University of South Carolina. She is currently the Cataloging Coordinator in the Technical Services Department at James A. Rogers Library at Francis Marion University. Her research interests focus on the curation, preservation, digitization and the archiving of information and how culture may play a role in information seeking and use. Her interests also lie in the study of genealogy.

George Shaw

George earned his B.S. in business administration (Charleston Southern University) and MSM in management of information systems (North Carolina Agricultural and Technical University) degrees. Most recently he has been working for the USC School of Library and Information Science as a Student Services Program Coordinator. His research interests involve information systems and technology and information seeking behavior, particularly with respect to health information. He has taught the undergraduate research methods and information use and literacy classes. His outside activities include service as a mentor with Big Brothers Big Sisters.


Margaret Sullivan


Simon Tarr


Stanislav Trembach

Beyond his undergraduate work in Russia, Stan holds a M.A. in history from Clemson University and an MSLS from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill (UNC-CH). He was Carolina Academic Library Fellow at UNC-CH, Library Fellow at Texas A&M University, and Instructional Services Librarian at Mercer University, before joining the doctoral program. His research interests relate to the role of emerging technologies and social media in the preservation of human memory and cultural identity, the history of information science, the comparative history of information management institutions, social inclusion, and cultural informatics. He has taught in the management, user-centered information architecture, and collection development/acquisitions area. 

Travis L. Wagner

Travis holds a B.A. In History from Augusta State University (GA) and an MLIS from the University of South Carolina (USC). He also earned a Graduate Certificate in Women’s and Gender Studies at USC and is still a teaching assistant and lecturer within that department. He is a cataloger and processing intern at the University of South Carolina’s Moving Image Research Collections and also works as a consultant to multiple Columbia-based community archives, specifically honing in on preserving and digitizing fragile audio-visual materials. His research interests relate to the role that language-based access plays concerning content creation and distribution within moving image archives, giving specific consideration for how this affects context and interpretation of visual information.

Deborah Yoho

Deborah earned a B.A. in education, MAT, and Ed.S degrees, all from the University of South Carolina. She has been a middle and high school teacher and principal as well as director of Turning Pages Adult Literacy Council (Columbia, SC) before entering the doctoral program. Her research interests lie in the areas of public libraries and marginalized populations, the digital divide, information overload, and adult literacy. Her teaching experience has ranged from sex education, to special education, adult literacy, most recently information policy and ethics.

Md Hassan Zamir

Hassan holds bachelor's and master's degrees in information science from the University of Dhaka in Bangladesh. He has worked at the British Council Library, where he held a prestigious internship, and as an IT officer for Pathmark Associated Limited, both in Dhaka. His current research involves the study of social movements utilizing social media as evidence. He has taught courses in user centered information architecture, information storage and retrieval, information organization and retrieval, and communications and information transfer.