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What is going on in the Department of Communication

#COMWeek2017 Alumni Panel

On the final day of COMWeek, Missouri State alumni will join us for an interactive panel. Current communication students will enjoy this opportunity to learn from the experiences of recent graduates who are making an impact in the field.

Meet the alumni panelists

Adria Baebler

Adria Baebler is a 2013 graduate of Missouri State and holds degrees in organizational communication and Spanish. She spent her first year out of college teaching English in Uruguay through the Fulbright Scholarship program, followed by a project management position for a corporate travel company, then worked as a translator for a nonprofit in Guatemala. Baebler currently works as an oncology consultant for Cerner, a healthcare IT company in Kansas City, where she meets with clients to develop and manage hospital conversions to Cerner software.

Bethany Bell

As PR & Social Media Manager at the Marlin Network, Bethany Bell develops and executes PR and social media strategies for global food brands. Before joining deep in 2013, Bell was the ‘Person in Charge of Getting the Word Out’ at Askinosie Chocolate, an artisan, bean-to-bar chocolate maker in Springfield. Growing up in the coffee industry, Bell is also a strong advocate of the local food movement.

Doug Gaehle

Formerly an account manager for Osborn Barr, a communications agency specializing in agriculture located in St. Louis, Doug Gaehle is now responsible for planning and executing tradeshow presence on behalf of the United Soybean Board. With over five years’ experience in public relations, marketing and event planning strategies. He has worked on a variety of brands, including: Green County Park Board, Anchor Poppers, Harvest Splendor, Unilever, Missouri State University Department of Communication, Monsanto and United Soybean Board.

Sara McClendon

Sara McClendon graduated from Missouri State in December 2011 with a degree in public relations. Currently, McClendon is a manager at Osborn Barr, a full-service advertising agency with offices in St. Louis, Kansas City and Nashville. She works primarily on DEKALB Asgrow brands in a hybrid public relations/account service role. She values Missouri State, not only for its role in preparing her for her career, but also for the lifelong friendships and connections it fostered, which keep her growing professionally and personally.

Key details

  • When: 11:30 a.m. – 1:30 p.m., Feb. 24
  • Where: PSU Ballroom East
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#COMWeek2017 Guest Scholar: Dr. Scott A. Myers

Thursday, Feb. 23

About Dr. Myers

As an instructional communication researcher, Dr. Myers’ research focuses primarily on the role communication plays in the instructor-student relationship, both in and out of the classroom, using experimental, survey and content analytic research methods. His current research projects focus on the role communication plays in the undergraduate student-faculty advisor relationship and how students use organizational citizenship behaviors in the classroom.

Dr. Myers is also a family communication researcher with a focus on how adult siblings maintain their relationships. He is beginning a series of studies examining how adult siblings use affectionate communication as a way to maintain their relationships. Currently, he is the director-elect of the educational policies board of the National Communication Association.

Key details

  • When: 11:30 a.m. – 1:30 p.m., Feb. 23
  • Where: PSU Ballroom East
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#COMWeek2017 Guest Scholar: Dr. Jeffrey T. Child

Wednesday, Feb. 22

About Dr. Child

Dr. Child has been particularly interested in utilizing communication privacy management theory as a framework for understanding the way social media users think about the overall management of their online disclosures.

In addition, he explores how the family reflects a unique culture where unique rules, roles and communication practices emerge and ensue. His scholarship in this area examines communication about family problems, how families coordinate narratives and cover stories among members for effective functioning, family communication practices in different cultures and finally how relational cultures are developed and sustained through the establishment of rituals.

The final area of Dr. Child’s expertise in instructional communication began when he was a basic course director at NDSU and established a practice of making all curricular changes from an assessment data-based standpoint. His research in instructional communication informs effective classroom communication practices.

Key details

  • When: 11:30 a.m. – 1:30 p.m., Feb. 22
  • Where: PSU Ballroom East
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#COMWeek2017 Guest Scholar: Dr. Autumn Edwards

Tuesday, Feb. 21

About Dr. Edwards

Dr. Autumn P. Edwards is an associate professor in the School of Communication at Western Michigan University. Her scholarly interests include interpersonal communication and communication theory, in both face-to-face and computer-mediated contexts.

Her research focuses on the influence of individuals’ personal theories of communication on aspects of community life, relational health and personal wellbeing. In addition, her recent scholarship has examined the influence of online message behavior on interpersonal impressions.

Key details

  • When: 11:30 a.m. – 1:30 p.m., Feb. 21
  • Where: PSU Ballroom East
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COM Week 2017 features distinguished researchers and alumni

Communication Week is a signature event for Missouri State University’s Department of Communication. It focuses on highlighting communication teaching and research, as well as bringing together students, alumni and community members to network. This year, the week-long event themed “Make Your Missouri Statement” will take place on campus from Feb. 21-24. Dr. Shawn Wahl, Missouri […]

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#COMWeek2017 schedule

#COMWeek2017 will kick off on Feb. 21 with a theme centered around Missouri State’s new brand, Make Your Missouri Statement.

These events offer opportunities for students who are interested in communication to engage with important ideas and influential figures in the field.

Students with COMWeek posters
Megan Hayes, Tina Pham and Bryar Keyes hold marketing collateral they created for COMWeek.

During COMWeek, students get the chance to interact with leading scholars in the field, including ones who have written textbooks used in Missouri State communication courses. There will also be an interactive alumni panel and networking opportunities — events where you can build relationships with communication students, faculty and alumni.

Learn more about COMWeek from this interview with Dr. Shawn Wahl.

Megan Hayes, Kellen Yoey and Tina Pham prepping for COMWeek.

Schedule of events

Feb. 21

11:30 a.m. – 1:30 p.m., PSU Ballroom East
Guest Scholar: Dr. Autumn Edwards, Western Michigan University

Feb. 22

11:30 AM – 1:30 PM; PSU Ballroom East
Guest Scholar: Dr. Jeff Child, Kent State University

Feb. 23

11:30 a.m. – 1:30 p.m., PSU Ballroom East
Guest Scholar: Dr. Scott Myers, West Virginia University

5:30 p.m. – 8:00 p.m.
Alumni and Student-Faculty Mixer at Springfield Brewing Company

Feb. 24

COM Alumni Panel

11:30 a.m. – 1:30 p.m, PSU Ballroom East

  • Bethany Bell, PR and Social Media Manager at Marlin
  • Adria Baebler, Training and Development at Cerner
  • Doug Gaehle, Account Executive at We are Alexander
  • Sara McClendon, Public Relations Manager at Osborne Barr
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CDR’s free Conflict Workshop Series addresses common issues in workplace

Ms. Heather Blades

Ms. Heather Blades

Mark your calendar for the Center for Dispute Resolution’s fall and spring Campus Conflict Workshop series. These free workshops are offered for Missouri State faculty, staff, students and alumni. These also qualify for Master Advisor credit.

Giving and Receiving Feedback

Oct. 12

12-1 p.m.
PSU 317

Presented by Dr. Char Berquist and Ms. Heather Blades

This session will explore how to give and receive feedback in the best ways possible, and will offer tips on how to handle these tough conversations and turn an otherwise uncomfortable experience into an opportunity for growth.

Bullying in the Workplace

Dr. Carrisa Hoelscher

Dr. Carrisa Hoelscher

Nov. 15

12-1 p.m.
PSU 317

Presented by Dr. Carrisa Hoelscher and Dr. Stephen Spates

Bullying is a common phenomenon that impacts workplace and campus settings. It often goes unrecognized even though it can cause much personal stress and group conflict. This workshop will discuss workplace and campus bullying behaviors, techniques for dealing with bullying, and prevention strategies.

Personality Types in Conflict

Jan. 25

12-1 p.m.
PSU 317
Presented by Dr. Gloria Galanes

Dr. Gloria Galanes

Dr. Gloria Galanes

Although conflict is inevitable, resolving conflict is easier when you understand the impact that a person’s personality type has on their reactions and perceptions. The session investigates the implications of personality types on conflict situations.

Coaching: An Effective Tool in Conflict Management

Feb. 21

12-1 p.m.
PSU 317
Presented by Dr. Char Berquist and Ms. Heather Blades

This session will provide coaching strategies to help you assist others in conflict situations.

Using Circles to Encourage Dialogue

Dr. Char Berquist

Dr. Char Berquist

April 19

12-1 p.m.
PSU 317

Presented by Dr. Char Berquist and Ms. Heather Blades

The “circle process” is a unique format that can be used to encourage dialogue, deep listening, and connection. Learn how you can use circles in the classroom and within organizations and units to build relationships and enhance learning and collaboration.

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Five reasons to choose COAL as your college

They are the storytellers. The creators. The visualizers.

The students who make up Missouri State’s College of Arts and Letters take pride in standing out amongst the crowd and making their Missouri Statement a distinct one. How? Here are five ways COAL is making itself known at MSU.

Giving Voice will open your eyes to oppression


Giving Voice, a theatre troupe housed in the theatre and dance department, puts on an interactive performance that is inspired by Augusto Boal’s Theatre. Their goal is to give a voice to those who are oppressed, underrepresented and marginalized.

The troupe helps many groups tackle topics like gender, racial, political and religious discrimination. This is done through a series of presentations and workshops. The Giving Voice facilitator and actors work with participants to explore how to approach taboo situations in a safe environment.

Student Exhibition Center gives you space to exhibit your creativity


The Student Exhibition Center, or SEC, is a gallery festooned with student artwork and funded through the Student Activity Fee.

Think your art should be featured? All you have to do is fill out a proposal form and you have a chance to have your own artwork on display.

You can even hold a reception there (but it does cost an extra fee, so check out the SEC website for more details).

The SEC is located on Historic Walnut Street at the north end of the Missouri State University campus.

But wait — there’s more! The SEC isn’t the only Missouri State gallery looking to display student artwork. The Brick City Gallery features distinguished, as well as up-and-coming artists, in this urban oasis of creativity. Plus, admission is free and open to the public.

You can immerse yourself in TV industry with ‘Show-Me Chefs’


Imagine a television show run by college students. That’s exactly what “Show-Me Chefs” is!

The show is produced by the department of media, journalism and film as part of a class. Students produce and film the whole series — a reality competitive cooking show that highlights local food producers and chefs.

The show’s second season is about to premier on KOZL-TV, and they are already in pre-production for Season 3. On Oct. 22, the show will host a fundraising gala at Springfield’s 319 Event Center.

Untamed Tongues will empower you to use your voice


Untamed Tongues is a poetry collective dedicated to establishing a place on campus for poets and musicians to share their creative works with others, be active servants to the community and maintain high academic achievement.

The group was co-founded nearly a year ago by Taylor Vinson, an MSU junior in communication. To celebrate this organization’s first birthday, a poetry slam is being held at 7:30 Oct. 3 in Plaster Student Union, room 400. There will be three rounds with three different time limits: Free topic, no props. Everyone with an original poem is welcome to participate

Study Away will take you around the world


We encourage our students to travel the world. There are several COAL faculty-led study away opportunities, including a few listed here:

  • In summer 2016, Dr. Andy Cline, a media, journalism and film associate professor, led a group of students on a 10-day train ride to the Trans-Siberian Railway. The goal was to create a documentary film as they travelled through Moscow, Vladivostok and Lake Baikal.
  • In another summer adventure, Dr. Cameron LaBarr, choral studies director, and the MSU Chorale took an 18-day tour of South Africa. Highlights included performing at the American Embassy, hiking in the mountains and attending a safari ride.
  • Center for Dispute Resolution took a 10-day study away trip to Ireland in June 2015. The program explored the country’s historical and cultural roots of conflict and the subsequent peacemaking processes and reconciliations. This cultural experience toured students around Dublin, Belfast and Derry/Londonderry.
  • For the last several summers, art professor Gwen Walstrand has led students on a trip to Florence, Italy. The courses offered abroad range from drawing, photography and general education options. For more information about the summer 2017 Italy trip, attend one of the info sessions on Oct. 5, Oct. 19, Nov. 14 or Nov. 23, each at 7 p.m. in Brick City, building 1, room 211.
Posted in andy cline, Art + Design, Art and Design, cameron labarr, Center for Dispute Resolution, Communication, giving voice, gwen walstrand, Media Journalism & Film, Media Journalism and Film, mjf, msu chorale, Music, News, News Releases, poetry slam, SEC, show me chefs, Student Accomplishments, Student Exhibition Center, Student News, study away, Theatre and Dance, Theatre and Dance Department, tv series, untamed tongues | Comments Off on Five reasons to choose COAL as your college