We write this letter to represent, partially and imperfectly, the voices of communication graduate students across the country. We dream of joining your departments, earning tenure, becoming distinguished scholars (lowercase) in our own right. We sit in your classrooms, toil in tiny offices, and perform incredible amounts of labor for our schools. We subscribe to CRTNET, and we are watching how this conversation unfolds.
We are of course a varied group, and have incredibly different experiences—some of us are situated in such a way that becoming an NCA Distinguished Scholar seems possible. The majority of them look like us. We are white. We are perhaps wealthy. We are mostly male. We are probably straight, cisgender, able-bodied. The current academic system was designed for our success.
Others of us face a more difficult road—in attending college, in attaining a graduate degree, in landing a tenure-track position, in earning tenure, and yes, in being recognized for the brilliance and humanity we bring to the Communication discipline.
No matter where we sit, we recognize the existing inequitability in the selection of Distinguished Scholars (and beyond). This process does not reflect our values or adequately represent the scholars we know and look up to. We are not only proud to stand alongside our colleagues calling for change, but we refuse to accept that the status quo has brought us true success. What those in power have enjoyed is a fraction of the flourishing we know we can create when everyone has the chance to be their full selves and thus, do their best learning, teaching, and scholarship.
We stand alongside the diverse voices in the field calling for change, and we join them. The future of the discipline demands it.
In solidarity,M.A./M.S., PhD, and recent graduate students of the communication discipline
Responses as of July 1, 2019 at 2:00pm MST
Emily N. Beach, M.A. (primary author)Courtney Meissner (SDSU)Danielle Biss, San Diego Sate UniversityEvelyn Puga, San Diego State UniversityYasaman SadeghiMolly Flores, San Diego State UniversityKara Sutton, San Diego State UniversityMatt Donovan (PhD graduate, Arizona State)Sarah Tellesen, San Diego State UniversitySophia TownRobert J. Razzante, Arizona State UniversityKory Riemensperger, Ph.D. student, University of PittsburghAna Terminel Iberri, PhD Student Arizona State UniversityHannah R. Long, doctoral candidate, University of New MexicoArthi S Chandrasekaran - Graduate Student - Michigan State UniversityErin V. Zamora, Doctoral Candidate, ASUCorey Reutlinger, Ph.D. Student., Arizona State UniversityAshley P. Jones, Georgia State UniversityJessica S. Rauchberg, Ph.D. Student, McMaster UniversityJessica Johnson, PhD, University of DenverKyle P. Colglazier, Ph.D. Student, Texas A&M UniversityAndrew Boge, Doctoral Student, University of IowaElizabeth M. Jenkins, PhD Student, Ohio UniversityCarson S. Kay, Ph.D. Candidate, Ohio UniversityCaleb Green, University of DenverDaniel M. Chick, PhD. Student, University of KansasBrandon McCasland, Ph.D. Student, University of IowaWill R. Silberman, PhD Student, University of KentuckyBenjamin W. Mann, Ph.D. Candidate, University of UtahSarah Austin, Ph.D. Candidate, Texas Tech UniversityEthan Hunter, Louisiana State UniversitySarah Gonzalez Noveiri, University of DenverNatalie Garcia, M.A., Louisiana State UniversityJennifer Woody Collins, PhD Student, Ohio UniversityMichelle Flood, Doctoral Student, University of IowaCassidy D. Ellis, Doctoral Student, The University of New MexicoHailey Otis, PhD Student, Colorado State UniversityRobert D. Hall, University of Nebraska-LincolnAbigail Reed, Ph.D. Candidate, Florida State UniversityCaleb McKinley-Portee, PhD Student, Southern Illinois University CarbondaleSophia Maier, Ph.D. student, Penn State UniversityShelby Swafford, Doctoral Student, Southern Illinois UniversityChristopher Garcia, PhD Student, Florida State UniversityRitika Popli, Doctoral Student, Ohio UniversityCara Marta Messina, Northeastern UniversityDanette M. Pugh-Patton, Doctoral Candidate, Southern Illinois University CarbondaleKristiana L. Báez, Doctoral student, The University of IowaKara StJonn Gonzales, University of New MexicoSophie Jones, PhD Student, University of New MexicoChristopher Wernecke, Ph.D. Student, Georgia State UniversityJohn Cena, PhD student, Penn State UniversityNick Sellers, PhD Candidate, Florida State UniversityBerkley Conner, Doctoral Student, University of IowaEmilee Shearer, PhD student, Arizona State UniversityJanice Hersey, PhD student, University of New MexicoVipulya Chari, PhD Student, University of Wisconsin-MadisonMahealani Yoshida (San Diego State University)Katrina Marks, PhD Student, University of North Carolina at Chapel HillNathaniel Rogers, San Diego State UniversityMax Plumpton, PhD Student, University of North Carolina at Chapel HillEmma Gabriele, Doctoral Student, University of IowaEm Kohl, M.A., James Madison University/Bridgewater CollegeNaomi Q. P. Tan, Doctoral Candidate, The Ohio State UniversityErin Drouin, Ph.D. student, the Ohio State UniversityStetler L. Brown, San Diego State UniversityYue Li, Ph.D student, The Ohio State UniversityKelly Merrill Jr., Ph.D. Student, The Ohio State UniversityKatrina Webber (University of Connecticut)Otis Duncan, MA student, Southern Illinois University CarbondaleMicki Burdick, PhD Student, The University of IowaRyan Bince, Northwestern UniversityRobin Bisha, Texas Lutheran UniversityMicah Huff, MA Student, Eastern Michigan UniversityJ.D. Swerzenski, PhD Student, University of Massachusetts-AmherstJordin Clark, PhD student, Colorado State UniversityKara Rader, PhD candidate, The Ohio State UniversityKelsey Abele, Doctoral Candidate, Arizona State UniversityAvi McClelland-Cohen, PhD Candidate, UC Santa BarbaraKevin Do, University of California, Santa BarbaraJaclyn Olson, PhD Student, University of North Carolina at Chapel HillSteven Kalani Farias, Doctoral Candidate, Southern Illinois University, CarbondaleAllison N. BLUMLING, PhD Student, University of UtahCamille Endacott, Doctoral Student, University of California Santa BarbaraKelley F. Macek, Ph.D. Student, Ohio UniversityDr. Alexander Sink, Senior Analyst, National Research GroupI recognize the existing inequatibility of *the nomination process* as well as the selection process of the DS award. -Nancy A. Heise MA Candidate, Texas State UniversityMichael Tristano Jr., PhD candidate, Arizona State UniversitySpencer B. Nicholls, Doctoral Candidate, Universiity of California Santa BarbaraJyleesa Hampton, PhD Student, School of Public Administration & Affairs, University of KansasBrittany Knutson, Graduate Student, University of Minnesota-Twin CitiesStephenson Brooks Whitestone, PhD Candidate, UC Santa BarbaraTaylor Joh son, Ph.D. student, University of UtahTrevor Arnold, M.A., Villanova UniversityJoshua Morrison, University of Minnesota-Twin CitiesJohn Marc Cuellar, Ohio UniversityPia De Los Reyes, San Diego State UniversityJ. Nan Wilkenfeld, Ph.D. student, UC Santa Barbara