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Students

MTS students in the job market this year

Eleanor Burgess
eburgess@u.northwestern.edu
Eleanor R. Burgess is a 5th year PhD candidate in the Media, Technology, and Society program. As a Fulbright scholar she earned her MSc in Technology Entrepreneurship from University College London. She received her BA in Communication Studies from Northwestern University with a minor in Global Health Studies. Her research investigates how technologies influence human health. She explores the needs of individuals, families, and healthcare providers to first deeply understand these contexts and then create human-centered solutions to help people reach their health-related goals. She has designed together with firefighters, healthcare providers, and patients. Working in the PITCH Lab she researches and collaborates with care managers and individuals managing depression to design digital mental health interventions that can support collaboration and connection to manage day-to-day mental health.

Mike DeVito
devitom@u.northwestern.edu
Mike DeVito is a doctoral candidate in Media, Technology, and Society and a Cognitive Science specialist. They currently work out of the Social Media Lab. Mike’s HCI-based research centers around how users adapt to the new challenges that ever-evolving, complex, algorithmically driven technology introduce to social and informational processes. Their current research in this area includes explorations of how social media users employ folk theories of algorithmic feeds to guide their behavior and determine self-presentation strategy, how queer populations balance disclosure and stigmatization in online spaces that induce new challenges related to audience management, and how the values of platforms and the values of marginalized communities diverge and cause intracommunity conflict. They currently publish work on these topics in top-tier HCI venues such as the ACM CHI and CSCW conferences.

Jabari Evans
jabarievans2020@u.northwestern.edu
Jabari Evans is a PhD candidate in the School of Communication Studies at Northwestern University and a research fellow at the Northwestern Center of Media and Human Development. His research focuses on the subcultures that urban youth and young adults of color develop and inhabit to understand their social environments, emotional development and professional aspirations. He explores strategies these youth use for self-expression especially regarding digital media. His most recent work is examining the cultural production and social media habits of youth musicians in the DIY Hip-Hop micro-scene of Chicago. His forthcoming dissertation project, which centers on a Hip-Hop Education program in Chicago Public Schools, has been recognized for awards by the International Communication Association and has been covered by the Chicago Reader, Chicago Tribune, Rolling Out Magazine, Ebony Magazine and Chicago Crain’s Business. He is also a 2019 selection for Microsoft Research New England’s Social Media Collective PhD Internship.

Lindsay Larson
Lindsay Larson is a PhD student in the Media, Technology, and Society program, working in Leslie DeChurch’s ATLAS Lab. Her research explores team performance and leadership emergence in teams and organizational systems, with a focus on leading teams in the digital age. Lindsay holds a BS in Psychology with a minor in Business Administration from the University of Florida.

MTS students

Rob Abhari
Rod Abhari is a Ph.D. student broadly interested in understanding the social and material conditions that enable the spread of scientific (mis)information. At Northwestern, he is working with Dr. Agnes Horvat to develop an article filtering tool which can track the online diffusion of scientific research and detect questionable research. Through this, he aims to both improve the accuracy of scientific reporting and combat the spread of science-based populism. He holds an M.A. in Communications from the University of Wisconsin – Madison and an M.A. in Science and Technology studies (STS) from the University of Maastricht in the Netherlands.

Mohammad Behroozian
Mohammad Behroozian is passionate about studying educational media for wartime. He has studied political science at the American University of Afghanistan and earned his master’s degree in television producing at Boston University on a Fulbright scholarship. Mohammad has nearly a decade of experience in media and communications work.

John J. Brooks
John J. Brooks is a doctoral student in the Media, Technology, and Society program at Northwestern University, working at the Center of Media Psychology and Social Influence (COM-PSI) under Dr. Nathan Walter. His research primarily pertains to communication in the contexts of health and politics—specifically, the use of entertainment-education to promote prosocial outcomes, the persuasive power of narratives, and the influence of mass media exposure on attitudes and behaviors. In addition to his research, John is an experienced teaching assistant and was accepted to the Searle Center’s Teaching Certificate Program. Previously, John completed a B.A. in Theatre/Gender Studies, an M.S. in Health Communication, and received an M.A. in Media, Technology, and Society, all from Northwestern.

Aaron D. Campbell
Aaron D. Campbell is a Ph.D. student in the Media, Technology, and Society program and researcher in the Science of Networks in Communities (SONIC) Lab. Before Northwestern, Aaron held client-facing positions at industry-leading companies where he advised and redesigned organizations looking to adopt emerging software and robotic solutions. Aaron researches how social architecture — the conscious design of physical and digital communication environments — impacts social behavior, relationship development, and collective performance. Aaron is particularly interested in finding new ways to design, monitor, and evaluate effective socio-technical systems, especially those involving immersive and artificially intelligent technologies and during times of high uncertainty. Aaron holds Communication M.A. and B.A. degrees from the University of Illinois — Urbana-Champaign and Aquinas College, respectively.

Kaitlyn Childs
Kaitlyn Childs is a Ph.D. candidate in the Media, Technology, and Society program, working in Professor Michelle Shumate’s NNSI Lab. Her research focuses on interorganizational network orchestration, nonprofit performance evaluation, and perceptions of corporate-nonprofit partnerships. She is the Network Evaluation Specialist at the Chicago Literacy Alliance (CLA), where she quantifies the impact of CLA programming on literacy outcomes in Chicago. She holds an M.A. in Communication and a B.A. in Liberal Arts and Sciences from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.

Christopher Dobmeier
dobmeier@u.northwestern.edu
Chris Dobmeier is a first-year PhD student in the Media, Technology, and Society program at Northwestern University, working in the Center Of Media Psychology and Social Influence (COM-PSI) with Dr. Nathan Walter. Chris is interested in strategies by which persuasive messages are designed, conveyed, and evaluated, especially in health contexts. He holds a B.A. and M.A. in Communication from the SUNY University at Buffalo.

Julia Fernandez
j-fernandez@u.northwestern.edu
Julia Fernandez is a PhD student in the Media, Technology and Society program working in Dr. Jeremy Birnholtz’s Social Media Lab. Her research focuses on how users navigate complex sociotechnical ecosystems in order to express themselves and make social connections. She is also conducting research regarding popular perceptions of algorithmic systems. Prior to Northwestern, Julia was a Junior Fellow at the National Digital Information Infrastructure and Preservation Program (NDIIPP) in the Library of Congress’ Office of Strategic Initiatives, working with Dr. Trevor Owens. She received her BA in American Studies from Smith College with a focus in Media and Digital Culture.

Floor Fiers
floorfiers@u.northwestern.edu
Floor Fiers is a PhD student in the MTS program who works together with Dr. Aaron Shaw as part of the Community Data Science Collective. She is interested in the field of digital inequality and discrimination, particularly in the realm of online labor markets. Originally from the Netherlands, Floor first came to the United States in 2013 to attend the United World College (Montezuma, NM). In 2019, she graduated summa cum laude with a BA in Sociology from St. Lawrence University (Canton, NY).

Jeremy Foote
jdfoote@u.northwestern.edu
Jeremy Foote is a PhD candidate who works with Aaron Shaw as part of the Community Data Science Collective. His research focuses on understanding collaboration systems, and in particular on understanding how new collaborations get started. He uses computational social science and data science methods to address questions like, “What patterns of communication predict productive, long-lasting communities?” and, “How do people decide which collaborative projects to contribute to?”

Hannah Getachew-Smith
h.badal@u.northwestern.edu
Hannah Getachew-Smith is a PhD candidate in the Media, Technology, and Society program and a Northwestern Presidential Fellow. She works with Dr. Courtney Scherr in the Health Communication Interaction Design Lab to develop interventions to facilitate difficult conversations in health. Hannah’s research interests focus on the evaluation of digital health interventions to promote healthy behaviors and address health disparities. Trained in public health, she holds a Master of Public Health from Emory University’s Rollins School of Public Health and is a Certified Health Education Specialist (CHES). Prior to returning to Northwestern, she worked at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) conducting research to develop and evaluate national HIV prevention campaigns.

Adam Goodkind
Adam Goodkind is a PhD student in the Media, Technology, and Society program, working out of the CollabLab and Inclusive Technology Lab. He studies linguistic markers of collaboration and convergence in conversations, and how these can be utilized to improve communication. By extracting deep linguistic structure and patterns of production, he strives to uncover previously unseen signals in conversation. Adam received an MA in Computational Linguistics from the CUNY Graduate Center, and a BA from Columbia University.

Valerie Gruest
Valerie Gruest is a PhD student in the Media, Technology and Society doctoral program. Her passion for team-centered research stems from her experiences as an Olympic swimmer, as she represented her home country of Guatemala at the 2016 Rio Olympic Games. She is working with Dr. Leslie DeChurch in the Advancing Teams, Leaders and Systems (ATLAS) Lab to uncover truths about teams and understand how they can collectively lead themselves. She has researched shared leadership as a dynamic approach to team collaboration, focusing on how shared leadership and decentralizing team processes hinder or enhance team performance. She’s currently studying how autonomous space crews can make effective decisions beyond reaching a consensus. Valerie holds a BA in Communication Studies with a double major in Art, Theory & Practice from Northwestern University. In addition to her involvement in academic research, Valerie is a multidisciplinary artist exploring issues of race, gender, labor and trauma through visual, time-based and installation art. Most recently, she was inducted into Northwestern’s Pi Theta chapter of Lambda Pi Eta (LPH), the official honor society of the National Communication Association (NCA), and received the Madeleine Robinson Memorial Award for her active involvement in community service.

Nick Hagar
nicholashagar2018@u.northwestern.edu
Nick Hagar is a PhD student working with Dr. Nick Diakopoulos in the Computational Journalism Lab. His research examines the business of news, with a focus on the labor of journalists. His current project uses computational methods to examine the link between freelancer career trajectories and news content. Nick holds a BS in Journalism from Northwestern University

Sohyeon Hwang
Sohyeon Hwang is a PhD student in the Media, Technology, and Society Program at Northwestern University and a National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellow. She works with Dr. Aaron Shaw in the Community Data Science Collective, with a primary focus on quantitatively and computationally investigating the complexity of governance in diverse large-scale online communities.

Phoebe Jean-Pierre
Phoebe Jean-Pierre is a JD/PhD candidate in the Media, Technology, and Society program and the Northwestern Pritzker School of Law. Her research centers on health communication, both in how we talk about health and some of the legal questions involved. Currently, her research focuses on immigration and where this intersects with the healthcare system. Beyond this, Phoebe is interested in the immigration court system, portrayal of immigrants in the media, healthcare laws, disclosure of medical error, racial disparities in medicine, doctor-patient confidentiality, and ethical and legal issues in health communication. Phoebe holds a BA in Communication and World History from the University of Pennsylvania.

Kerstin Kalke
Kerstin Kalke is a Ph.D. Candidate in the Media, Technology, and Society program working in Dr. Courtney Scherr’s Health Communication Interaction Design Lab. Kerstin’s research focuses on developing communication strategies to facilitate health decision making under high degrees of uncertainty and risk. She is particularly interested in understanding how emotions and affective forecasting affect people’s decision-making processes. Previous projects were situated in the contexts of cardiac and cancer genetics, colon cancer screening, and breast cancer. Kerstin holds a BA in English/American and German Studies from the Julius-Maximilians Universitaet in Wuerzburg, Germany, and a MA in Communication from the University of New Mexico.

Yena Lee
Yena Lee is a first-year Ph.D. student in the Media, Technology and Society program. She was born in Korea and grew up in Brazil. She received her B.A. in Media Studies from the University of California, Berkeley. Her undergraduate thesis on feminist K-pop fans’ connective action on Twitter was accepted by NCA and the Console-ing Passions Conference. She hopes to expand her research on feminist activism by studying collective mobilization online using a critical lens to examine social, political, and cultural connections and disconnections that technologies create.

Breniel Lemley
Breniel Lemley is a third-year Ph.D. student in the in the Media, Technology, and Society program and a National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellow. She conducts research in the Center on Media and Human Development with Dr. Ellen Wartella. Her current work involves learning how science media and its use can help support young children’s science learning. Prior to attending Northwestern, Lemley worked in the Education Division of SRI International as an Education Research Associate. There, she supported projects funded by the Institute of Educational Sciences, U.S. Department of Education, National Science Foundation, George Lucas Education Foundation, and the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. She holds a BA in Psychology with a minor in Music from the University of San Francisco.

Maya Lennon
Maya Lennon is a PhD student in the Media, Technology and Society program and a National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellow.  She holds a BS in Cognitive Science from Brown University. She conducts research with Dr. Ellen Wartella in the Center on Media and Human Development.  Her research focuses on how young children collaborate with their peers or adults while using different types of technology.

Reyhaneh Maktoufi
Reyhaneh Maktoufi is a PhD candidate in Media, Technology, and Society at Northwestern University. Her research focuses on science communication, curiosity, and public engagement with scientists. She works at the Nonprofit Network and Social Impact Lab where she studies nonprofit mergers and attitudes toward nonprofit-corporation partnerships. Her working background is mainly in audience outreach in nonprofits, mostly in the field of health. Rey currently enjoys working with different nonprofits such as the Adler Planetarium as a communication workshop facilitator and the Communicating Science Conference ComSciCon – Chicago as an organizer. She also engages in science outreach through writing blog-posts and making science comics.

Mora Matassi
Mora Matassi is a third-year Ph.D. student in Media, Technology and Society at Northwestern University. She holds an M.A. in Media, Technology, and Society (Northwestern University), an Ed.M. in Technology, Innovation, and Education (Harvard University), and a B.A. in Communication (Universidad de San Andrés). She is interested in the intersection between digital culture and computer-mediated communication. She is coordinator at the Center for Latinx Digital Media (Northwestern University); in the past, she was research assistant at MIT and coordinator at the Center for the Study of Media and Society in Argentina. Her papers have appeared in New Media & SocietyJournal of Computer-Mediated Communication, and El Profesional de la Información. She is currently working on the book manuscript Social Media Studies: Comparative Perspectives (joint with Pablo Boczkowski). Mora contributes to CNN Radio Argentina and has co-produced/hosted a podcast with Revista Anfibia about self-tracking technologies. She was awarded with a Fulbright – Ministry of Education scholarship.

Joshua-Paul Miles
Joshua-Paul Miles is a third-year Ph.D. student in the Media, Technology, and Society program studying with Dr. Michelle Shumate. He is a research assistant in the Network for Nonprofit and Social Impact Lab. Joshua-Paul investigates interorganizational networks across organizational domains. Specifically, he aims to understand how interorganizational network dynamics can better address interconnected and complex problem spaces. Some of these contexts include nonprofit-corporate partnerships, equity-focused coalitions, and systems of care. He hopes to help lead organizations to successful cross-sector outcomes that benefit various stakeholders through methods grounded in robust and multilevel research analyses. He received his M.A. in Media, Technology, and Society from Northwestern University. Prior to Northwestern, Joshua-Paul earned his B.A. in Corporate Communication and Spanish for the Business Professions with a minor in Human Resources from Marquette University.

Ivory Mills
imills@u.northwestern.edu
Ivory Mills is a Law & Science Fellow and dual degree candidate pursuing a PhD in Media, Technology, and Society and a JD at Northwestern Law. With interests in both theory and practice, she investigates international information and communication technology (ICT) market organization and regulation from organizational and interorganizational perspectives. Interdisciplinary in nature, her work draws upon the technological, economic, legal, and social implications of corporate, civil society, and regulatory institutions in the international system, highlighting the challenges ICTs pose for law and policymaking. Her dissertation research explores the international ICT governance network of standard setting organizations (a form of modern transnational private regulation) and international investment treaties (a form of traditional international law), and looks for potential conflicts, such as security, intellectual property, and economic development.

Annika Pinch
Annika Pinch is a PhD student in the Media, Technology, and Society program. She holds a BA in Psychology from Cornell University where her undergraduate honors thesis was a qualitative study on the economic, educational, and social impacts of the social media tax in Kampala, Uganda. She has also done research on how cultural workers’ anticipate and respond to the challenges that algorithmic systems pose on their respective platforms. In general, she is very interested in digital inequalities and how marginalized communities use technology. She is currently studying how those who have been incarcerated experience technology after being released from prison and how they manage their online identities.

Sanjana Ramesh
Sanjana Ramesh is a PhD Candidate (ABD) in the Media, Technology, and Society program working with Dr. Courtney Scherr in the Health Communication Interaction Design Lab. Sanjana holds an MPH in Health Communication and Social Marketing and has several years of experience in the nonprofit healthcare sector. Broadly, Sanjana’s research agenda centers on designing health communication and behavior change interventions to improve patient-centered care. She is particularly interested in designing more targeted behavioral interventions to support women in navigating and managing their health below the belt (I.,e, gynecological, reproductive & pelvic health). Sanjana is currently involved with Renalis, a femtech startup creating digital solutions for pelvic health. She is also a 200 hour certified yoga instructor at Studio Three, a local boutique fitness studio.

Thomas Rousse
Thomas H. Rousse studies the intersection of law and technology, with a focus on intellectual property and online communities, as a joint J.D./Ph.D. student. He currently serves as the Senior Online Editor of Northwestern University Law Review. He holds an MSc. in Media, Technology and Games Analysis from the IT University of Copenhagen and graduated from Northwestern’s American Studies program in 2010. His advisor is Aaron Shaw.

Callie Sartain
carolynsartain2025@u.northwestern.edu
Callie Sartain is a first-year PhD student in the Media, Technology & Society (MTS) program working with Dr. Courtney Scherr in the Health Communication Interaction Design Lab. Originally from Georgia, Callie is a graduate of Mercer University (BA, Communication Studies) and Wake Forest University (MA, Communication). Broadly, her research interests include narrative health persuasion, informed decision-making, and the growing prevalence of medical myth-making in online social communities. She is particularly interested in developing intervention strategies, rooted in behavioral health theories, that aim to mitigate uncertainty and promote positive health behaviors.

Camille Saucier
Camille Saucier is a Ph.D. student in Media, Technology and Society working at the Center Of Media Psychology and Social Influence (COM-PSI) under Dr. Nathan Walter. She holds a BA and MA from the University of Southern California in Psychology and Communication Management respectively, and previously worked as a research specialist with the Norman Lear Center’s Media Impact Project. Her research interests include public opinion formation, attitude change, and decision-making, specifically around science communication. She is particularly interested in the discourse surrounding environmental issues like climate change, and how these messages can be adapted to be more persuasive.

Anne-Marie Singh
annemarie@u.northwestern.edu
Anne-Marie Singh is a Ph.D. candidate in the Media, Technology, and Society Program at Northwestern University and is working at the Network for Nonprofit and Social Impact under Dr. Michelle Shumate’s advisorship. She has several years of experience working in environmental nonprofits as a communicator and as a science journalist in public media. Her research interests include organizational communication and cross-sector partnerships in the nonprofit sector. Anne-Marie has a M.S. degree in Science Journalism from Boston University and a B.A. in English Literature from Delhi University, India.

Facundo Suenzo
Facundo Suenzo is a first-year PhD student in the Media, Technology and Society program working with professor Pablo Boczkowski. He is interested in sociology of culture, media reception and technology use. He was born and raised in Argentina where he earned his B.A in Communication from the Universidad de San Andrés (UdeSA). Before joining Northwestern, Facundo was coordinator at the Center for Media and Society (MESO) in Argentina between 2018-2020.

Sapna Suresh
Sapna Suresh is a first-year doctoral student in the School of Communication at Northwestern University. She works alongside Dr. Nathan Walter in the Center of Media Psychology and Social Influence to evaluate the effectiveness of strategic messaging and methods to correct misinformation. Sapna’s research interests center around information gathering, attitude and preference formation, and leveraging knowledge of these areas to facilitate positive decision-making and soci-behavioral outcomes. She is interested questions such as, “How do we compel the American citizenry to prioritize climate change action their day-to-day actions and voting behavior?” and, “How can we encourage truthful, fact-based discourse in online spaces?” Sapna holds a BA from Rice University in environmental engineering and policy studies.

Kyosuke Tanaka
Kyosuke Tanaka is a Ph.D. candidate in the Media, Technology, and Society program, working in Noshir Contractor’s SONIC research group. He is interested in people’s awareness of their social networks that could impact their task performance and more importantly, group coordination. His recent projects explore the factors that explain the errors we make in accurately assessing and mobilizing network ties among individuals in our social network. Kyosuke holds a Master of Social Research (Advanced) from Australian National University, a B.A. in Business and Commerce from Keio University, and certification from the International Business Profession program at Bellevue College.

Daniel Trielli
Daniel Trielli is researching how news reaches the public in our algorithmically-defined information world, and how computational journalism can be applied to investigate complex issues. He has a master’s degree in Journalism from the University of Maryland, where he studied the way in which search engines mediated political information during the 2016 United States elections. Before coming to the U.S., Daniel worked as a journalist for over a decade in his native Brazil.

Kalia Vogelman-Natan
Kalia Vogelman-Natan is a PhD student in the Media, Technology, and Society program working in the Center on Media and Human Development with Ellen Wartella. Her research interests focus on mobile communication and the role of media in the lives of families, specifically the impacts mobile ubiquity has on children, adolescents, and parenting. She holds a BA in International Relations with a minor in English Literature & Linguistics, and an MA in Communication from the Hebrew University of Jerusalem.

Ashley Walker
Ashley Marie Walker is a PhD candidate in the Media, Technology. & Society program at Northwestern University. Her work looks at the ways online social spaces impact group dynamics and intracommunity conflict, ecological perspectives on sociotechnical systems, and how epistemic injustices influence coordination and collaboration practices for response to long-term, systemic crises. She works with Madhu Reddy in the PITCH Lab, and her dissertation work looks at how the invisible labor that brings people, information, and technology into working configurations can exclude crucial stakeholders in responding to the rise in maternal mortality in the US.

Jasmine (Yutong) Wu
Jasmine (Yutong) Wu is a first-year Ph.D. student in Media, Technology, and Society program working in Noshir Contractor’s Science of Networks in Communities (SONIC) lab. Her research interests include social network analysis, teamwork, and intergroup bias. She applies computational tools to understand team processes in research and industrial settings to further improve management and team performance. She graduated from Cornell University with a B.S. in Information Science and Communication. There, her research focused on gender difference in immersive virtual environments and co-authorship networks.

Erique Zhang
Erique Zhang (they/them) is a PhD student in the Media, Technology, and Society. Drawing on feminist, queer, trans, and critical race theory, Erique’s research focuses on the aesthetic practices, media representation, and cultural production of transgender people and queer and trans people of color. Their current work uses a combination of YouTube video data and interview data to interrogate constructions of beauty among trans women and femmes. Erique’s work has been published in Studies in Costume & Performance, Fashion Studies Journal, International Journal of Communication, and the forthcoming SAGE Encyclopedia of Trans Studies. Erique is affiliated with the Center for Critical Race and Digital Studies. They hold a BFA in studio art and an MA in costume studies, both from New York University.

Renwen (Alice) Zhang
Renwen (Alice) Zhang is a PhD candidate in the Media, Technology, and Society program. She works with Madhu Reddy in the PITCH Lab and is also affiliated with the Center for Behavioral Intervention Technologies (CBITs). Her research focuses on the effects of digital technology on individuals’ well-being and social relations. She uses mixed methods to examine how individuals use social media and mobile technology to communicate with others and enhance well-being, with a particular interest in self-disclosure, online privacy, and mental health. Alice’s work has appeared in top peer-reviewed journals, such as Information, Communication, & Society and Computers in Human Behavior.