I have done my very best to be a contributing member of the intellectual and cultural life of Arcadia University through service to my department, the university, and my discipline. I genuinely enjoy university service, and I have since I first served on departmental faculty committees as a graduate student. I enjoy governance, I enjoy advising, I enjoy committees and procedure and petitions for policy. My colleagues in the department even joke about it.
I value the privilege I have, as a faculty member, to participate in the collective decision-making processes of the institution as a whole. My dad worked for an airline for 35 years, from loading baggage to scheduling flight crews. My mom has worked as a dietician for hospitals, food banks, nursing homes and public health agencies for just as long. The airline never asked my dad for approval on an administrative hire—they just took away his pension when they declared bankruptcy. No hospital or nursing home ever asked my mom for her opinion on how their budgets should be allocated. They just tell her “do more with less.” But I work in conditions where I get some say in how things work, and I recognize that as a rare privilege and as a serious responsibility. I feel fortunate to be able to make a substantive contribution to the institutions in which I work, and the culture of this campus.
The primary site of my service to Arcadia has, naturally, been within my own department. My arrival at Arcadia was coincident with the establishment of the Department of Media and Communication, and I have been delighted with the opportunity to shape our new departmental identity in a variety of ways.
- I advise 30 undergraduate students, which is a considerable responsibility but also allows me to work closely with students to chart their way through our major.
- Since 2014, I have served as the undergraduate program director in the department. In this position I oversee departmental advising, meet with prospective students, approve declarations of majors and minors, and assist my chair as needed.
- I have been given the freedom to redefine some of the core courses in our major, which will update the skills and experiences our majors will take with them after they graduate. In 2011, I composed a petition to designate our department’s CM213 as a “Research Writing” course, and the success of that petition has given our majors more flexibility in their scheduling and more direct preparation for the kinds of research they will do in their capstone projects.
- I participated in my department’s self-study in 2014-2015 year, helping to craft both the vision statement for the department’s print communication track, and helping to write the response to the external reviewer’s response.
After my first year, in which I was exempted from university service, I have worked along with my colleagues to participate in shared governance, help define new university initiatives, and recognize student work.
- I have regularly served on the University Writing Awards committee, helping to increase submissions and establish evaluation criteria for the Maimon, LeClair, and Belcher awards.
- Since 2012 I have been on the digital repository / scholarly communication advising group.
- In AY 2013-2014 I served as faculty secretary, taking and filing minutes from full-faculty and faculty council meetings.
- From 2011 to 2014, I was an active member of the Junior Faculty Advocacy group here on campus, volunteering to serve as a facilitator in 2013.
- I’m on the advisory board for the undergraduate honors journal, The Compass.
- In 2011, I conducted a nationwide survey of campus media practices and institutions, interviewing student media supervisors, professors, and student media workers at dozens of schools and reviewing the structure of hundreds of student media outlets.
- With the knowledge that came from this research, I was able to assist a group of students in the founding of Loco Magazine, a campus multimedia publication, in the Fall of 2011. Loco is now preparing for its 20th issue, and has tens of thousands of unique visitors every year.
- Twice a semester, I lead an open house info session for prospective Media and Communication students.
DISCIPLINARY SERVICE and OUTREACH
In the last few years, I have had the opportunity to extend my service beyond the Arcadia campus, both locally and internationally. These efforts have not only helped me to establish myself in my community and in my academic discipline, but they also make the work of the university visible to people not currently on campus.
- In 2012, I built a mobile conference program for the Society of Cinema and Media Studies conference with the Guidebook app (you can see the program here, using the access code 8c5fyqxv). The mobile app allowed conference attendees to schedule their day, navigate to the correct conference room, and take notes on sessions, all in the same mobile interface.
- This work led to my being invited to join the SCMS Information Technology Committee, where I have helped to broaden the use of a mobile conference app. The new mobile program (powered by Sched) allows presenters, attendees, and vendors to search the program, share abstracts, notifies them when seats in the panel will be scarce, and see who else is in the audience. The IT Committee has also worked to livestream some panels to the public, and use social media to highlight elements of the conference for those who cannot attend.
- More locally, I was a part of the Philadelphia Cinema and Media Seminar hosted at Temple University. This gave me the opportunity to engage in academic exchange with cinema and media scholars in my particular field and in our geographical region (the Philadelphia CMS invites guest lecturers and host events for media scholars in the metro area).
- I’m also a regular participant in The Humanities and Technology Camp (THATCamp) in Philadelphia, a gathering of tech workers, archivists, historians, librarians and students looking for new ways to use technology in education, the arts, and civic life. This year I will also be attending PodCamp for the first time.