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    Doctoral Research Symposium

    Dr. Sei-Hill Kim presents Joon Kim the Bryce Rucker Research award

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    Doctoral Research Symposium

    Dr. Sei-Hill Kim presents Kelli Boling with the Graduate Student Excellence in Teaching Award.

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    Doctoral Research Symposium

    Graduate students pose for group photo with Dr. Sei-Hill Kim and Camea Cato (far right).

Teaching and research awards headline doctoral symposium

Posted April 30, 2918


The School of Journalism and Mass Communications held its annual Doctoral Research Symposium on April 26. In its fourth year, the event is an opportunity for the academic community to learn more about doctoral students in the program and to recognize and celebrate the success of graduate research.

Dr. Sei-Hill Kim, associate director for graduate studies and research, told the assembly that a strong doctoral program is one of the best indicators of the quality and profile of any academic unit. 

"Our doctoral students have demonstrated excellence in research, having a large number of papers published in scholarly journals and in presenting their research to national and international conferences," he said. 

Two students, Kelli Boling and Joon Kim, were honored with the school's top awards.

Boling, a second-year doctoral student, was awarded the Graduate Student Excellence in Teaching Award for her work with undergraduate students in a public relations writing course. Every student in the class gave her the highest score on her faculty evaluations.

She was lauded by them for her obvious enjoyment of teaching, for a rigorous but fair schedule, and for the lively class discussion and case studies.

A third-year doctoral student, Kim was awarded the Bryce Rucker Research Award. The award is supported by the SJMC graduate program and is given in memory of Bryce Rucker, a former graduate director known for his excellence in research.

Kim was selected for excellence in both quality and quantity of his research. In 2017, he received two top-paper awards at AEJMC and had four journal articles published, with four under review.  He also presented eight conference papers.

Boling and Kim were two of five doctoral students who presented their most recent research at the symposium.  Many of the projects were funded through the SJMC graduate student research grant program.

Symposium presenters and their research:

Kelli S. Boling - "Lost in Translation: The Disturbing Decision to Limit Access to Audio Court Files for Podcasters." Won a Top Paper Award at the AEJMC Southeast Colloquium.

Nandini Bhalla - "Examining Cultural Impacts on Consumers’ Green CSR Perceptions." Won the Peter Debreceny Corporate Communication Award from the International Public Relations Research Conference.

Daniel Haun - "Let’s Face It: Building Brand Engagement on Instagram through Faces." Won his poster session at Discover USC.

Joon Kim - "What Shapes Environmental Responsibility Perceptions? Measuring Collectivistic Orientations as a Predictor of Situational Motivations and Communicative Action." 

Matt Stilwell - "A Case Study of the NCAA vs. Student-Athletes’ Social Media Rights: The Donald De La Haye Case." Paper accepted to the 2018 Collegiate Sport Research Institute Conference.