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Past Research Scholars

Media Ethics Initiative Research Scholars (Fall 2018)

SemmyOluwasemilore Adeoluwa, also known as Semi, is a senior at the University of Texas at Austin majoring in Corporate Communication along with a minor in Sociology. She plans to use this experience as a Media Ethics Initiative Research Scholar to help develop both her critical writing skills and her ability to evaluate the differing points of view of all the participants in a situation. Furthermore, she hopes this internship imparts more knowledge on the constantly developing dilemmas concerning communication ethics, indispensable knowledge that would aid her in her future career in communications.


ColinheadshotColin Frick is a junior at the University of Texas at Austin pursuing a major in Computer Science with a minor in Business Administration. Colin has always been intrigued by interesting ethical dilemmas, especially those concerning new technologies like social media. He became interested in researching and writing on media ethics topics after taking Dr. Scott Stroud’s Digital Ethics course. As a Media Ethics Initiative Research Scholar, he is excited to have the opportunity to think critically about difficult issues that our society is facing and will be facing in the future.


KaitlynHeadshotKaitlyn Pena is a senior Public Relations major at the University of Texas at Austin. She became interested in digital ethics after taking Dr. Scott Stroud’s Digital Ethics course. She looks forward to writing case studies on emerging online ethical issues and reading about new issues in media. She is particularly interested in the ethical issues surrounding children’s online usage.


Alex P.Alex Purcell is a senior at the University of Texas at Austin majoring in Communication Studies with a minor in Rhetoric & Writing. After she began working at the Center for Media Engagement, she became interested in the role of ethics in online journalism and politics. She is also fascinated by the ethics of video game culture and digital entertainment because she claims to be a pop culture connoisseur. She hopes that the MEI Research Scholar internship will add to her understanding of media ethics in our everyday lives. Alex also assists the Media Ethics Initiative with event planning and administrative tasks.


MichaelheadshotMichael Sanchez, a third-year Plan II major, pursues the study of Design Strategies with UT’s new School of Design and Creative Technologies. He brings the design principles he learns to his other work, from analyzing the Cybersyn command room of 1970s Chile to developing communications strategy for Apricity Magazine. Michael attended a lecture his freshman year that let him see the importance of citizen journalism. Since then, he’s realized the ethical questions journalists consider also should be considered by everyone using social media. He looks forward to researching the ethics of social media and other topics for the Media Ethics Initiative this semester.


hollandheadshot_nHolland Smith is a senior at the University of Texas at Austin majoring in Political Communication and minoring in Government. Holland’s interests in politics and broadcast journalism are closely related to the issues of media ethics, and she looks forward to exploring the intersection between the two over the course of the semester. As a Media Ethics Initiative Research Scholar, she is excited to analyze challenging and relevant topics and applying her findings to her own media use.


weisenthal-headshot-e1543419523953.jpegRachel Weisenthal is a senior at the University of Texas at Austin majoring in Human Relations with a focus on the entertainment industry. With the ultimate goal of working in the music business, Rachel took any and every class available to her regarding the role of mass media and brand development on interpersonal communication and American culture. She spent the fall of 2017 participating in the UT in Los Angeles program, working full time for credit and taking industry-specific classes at night. Having always been fascinated by the role ethics plays in media, both digital and traditional, Rachel is excited to explore these issues through her work with the Media Ethics Initiative.


Justin_Pehoski_PhotoJustin Pehoski is a Research Associate assisting with editing and administrative responsibilities. He is pursuing a graduate degree in Communication Studies at the University of Texas at Austin. His research interests include media ethics, pragmatism and rhetoric, public discourse, and philosophy of communication. He holds B.A. degrees in Psychology and Journalism from California State University, Chico. For two years he served as assistant managing editor of the Paradise Post which twice won the California Newspaper Publishers Association first-place award for general excellence.


Media Ethics Initiative Research Scholars (Spring 2018)

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James Jackson Hayden is a third year student at the University of Texas at Austin majoring in Communication Studies and Government. He plans to attend law school after completing his undergraduate studies. Jackson is the president of his fraternity and conducts marketing operations for an Austin startup called Loftsmart. As a Media Ethics Initiative Research Scholar, he would like to examine the ever-changing technological aspects of communication ethics and how they might apply to the legal field. Of particular interest for Jackson are the challenges posed by anonymity and online speech for media ethics research.


headshot-e1518298105242.jpgJason Head is currently a senior in the Department of Radio-Television-Film in the Moody College of Communication. His interest in media ethics stems from the growing importance of an information technologies and the power of media producers to have an impact on the expression and dissemination of ideas. As a Media Ethics Initiative Research Scholar, he hopes to take a closer look at the ethical dilemmas that surround media production in order to build a stronger background for his own work as a content creator. He is also interested in exploring different critical lenses for thinking about the effects of new and old media.


AD0D043C-D04D-469E-B635-E6F9A564A5BE - CopyAnna Rose Isbell is sophomore Communication Studies major in UT Austin’s Moody College of Communication. In addition to her studies in communication, she is pursuing a certificate in UT Austin’s Bridging Disciplines Program in “Ethics and Leadership in Law, Politics, and Government.” She is excited to learn more about how these topics are intertwined with media ethics over the coming semester. Anna Rose plans to attend law school after completing her studies at UT Austin, and she is excited about writing case studies as a Media Ethics Initiative Research Scholar because it will further develop her analytical and writing skills.


headshotMorgan Malouf is a senior at the University of Texas at Austin majoring in Rhetoric and Writing, along with a minor in Communication Studies. Morgan is very interested in media ethics because she intends to pursue a law degree after her studies conclude at UT Austin. She finds reading about difficult ethical issues in media practices and writing case studies to be challenging but fun, and she’s excited to learn more about modern communication technologies before she starts law school. Morgan hopes to use this internship as a way to learn more about the ethical issues in communication and to hear from researchers about the contemporary challenges of media use.


baileyBailey Sebastian is a third year Human Development & Family Sciences and Philosophy double-major with a minor in Communication Studies at the University of Texas at Austin. Bailey has always enjoyed discussing ethical issues so the Media Ethics Initiative Research Scholar internship really appealed to her when she was selecting courses for the spring semester. She looks forward to writing case studies on overlooked topics and technological challenges in media and communication ethics during her internship.


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Sabrina Stoffels is a senior Human Relations major and Spanish minor at the University of Texas at Austin. She became particularly interested in media ethics after taking Dr. Scott Stroud’s Communication Ethics course. Sabrina looks forward to the opportunity provided by the Research Scholar internship to conduct research and write case studies on important topics in media ethics. When she’s not studying, Sabrina serves as the Social Media Publicity Officer for “Campus Events + Entertainment” and is working toward her certification as a conflict mediator. She also enjoys going to theater, dance, and comedy performances around Austin.


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Haley Turner is a Psychology major with a minor in Communication Studies at the University of Texas at Austin. After taking the CMS 322E: Communication Ethics course at UT Austin, she found the topic of media ethics to be very compelling. Haley has always been interested in hearing all the different viewpoints and approaches that can be taken concerning ethical situations, so she is excited to explore more of these types of issues in media use during her Research Scholar internship with the Media Ethics Initiative. She hopes to use this internship to challenge herself to learn more about this important subfield of ethics.


Current Media Ethics Initiative Research Scholars

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