Activities and Achievements of Students, Alumni and Faculty
2019 – 2020
Communication Senior Arisa Tanai received a Top Paper Award in the 10th annual James C. McCroskey and Virgina P. Richmond Undergraduate Scholars Conference during the 111th annual conference of the Eastern Communication Association (ECA). Her study is entitled, “Female Fashion: A Form of Empowerment and Exploitation.”
Arisa’s study examines how women, particularly those in a professional work setting, use professional-looking attires to express their social identity. She examines the historical development and alterations of women’s workplace presence and their work attires, conducting a survey and in-depth interviews on college students who seek professional employment, and textual analyses on clothing advertisements. Arisa employs a feminist theoretical framework and theoretical debates to understand ideology (e.g., Luis Althusser). Arisa produced this study in COMN 368 Research in Media and Cultural Studies during Fall ’19 with Dr. Atsushi Tajima. Arisa is an international student from Japan. (Photo of Arisa Tanai / Photo by Atsushi Tajima)
Communication Senior Gabriella Dignitti received a Top Paper Award in the 10th annual James C. McCroskey and Virgina P. Richmond Undergraduate Scholars Conference during the 111th annual conference of the Eastern Communication Association (ECA). Her study is entitled, “Female Figure Skating: A Unique Communicative Arena against Hegemonic Masculine Sport World.”
While the male component is much more popular than the women’s for most sports, figure skating is a very unique sport where the women’s component has much greater popularity than men's. By employing theoretical lenses of recent feminism and cultural studies, Gabriella explains this unique nature and the reasons behind it. She further argues that figure skaters—both female and male skaters—communicate deeper athletic, cultural, and ideological messages beyond conventional gender stereotyping. Gabriella, who is also a national-level competitive figure skater, produced this study in COMN 368 Research in Media and Cultural Studies during Fall ’19 with Dr. Atsushi Tajima. (Photo of Gabriella Dignitti / Photo by Atsushi Tajima)
2018 – 2019
In April, 16 student projects from the Communication department were accepted into the 2019 ECA Conference in Providence, Rhode Island , April 10–14, . Among those sixteen, Noah Coates received Top Undergraduate Paper for his work, "Cultivation Theory: A Lens for Modern Nationalism and Social Disunity." Congratulations to all who attended, only 65% of applicants were accepted!
(Photo of 2019 Geneseo ECA group, back from left to right: Daniel Leo, Noah Coates (Top Paper Award winner, Kaci Snyder, Sara Reppenhagen, Anna Gilbert, Gabrielle Owen, and Harrison Harmon; front from left to right: Jamie-Lynn Irwin, Priscilla Thomas, Kathleen Rock; Stephanie Roney, Rachel Renders, Iris Benz, and Emily LaRocca) (Photo by Atsushi Tajima)
2017 – 2018
Communication Senior Hana Mokonuma received the Top Paper Award in the 8th annual James C. McCroskey and Virgina P. Richmond Undergraduate Scholars Conference during the 109th annual conference of the Eastern Communication Association (ECA) and the Lambda Pi Eta Top Paper Award from National Communication Association (NCA). Her study is entitled, “Performing Love through Facebook Relationship Presentation.” By employing a theoretical lens from Erving Goffman's classic work Presentation of Self in Everyday Life (1956), Hana conducted surveys and in-depth interviews to explore the ways in which ordinary people narrate and "craft self" as a means to communicate through social media. Hana produced this study in COMN 368 Research in Media and Cultural Studies with Dr. Atsushi Tajima. (Photo of Hana Mokonuma / Photo by Keith Walters '11 )
A total of 14 Geneseo Communication students presented their research (a total of 12 projects) in the 8th annual James C. McCroskey and Virgina P. Richmond Undergraduate Scholars Conference during the109th annual conference of the Eastern Communication Association (ECA) in Pittsburgh, PA, April 25–29, 2018.
(Photo of 2018 Geneseo ECA group; back from left to right: Nanami Kagawa, Callista Fiegl, Erin Shaginaw, Anni-Ming Larson, Kiera Hoenig, Hana Mokonuma (Top Paper Award winner), and Frank Weber; front from left to right: Michelle Soria, Mary Monsees, and Meghan Murphy; circle; Gabrielle Owen / Photo by Atsushi Tajima)
Sarah Jane Phillips ’18 was selected for the honor of Senior Orator at the afternoon commencement ceremony on May 12, 2018. Members of the Class of 2018 were invited to compete for the distinction of Senior Orator in a multi-stage process. Sarah Jane shared reflections on the Geneseo experience with her graduating class. (Photo of Sarah Jane Phillips / Photo by Atsushi Tajima)
Link to recorded commencement ceremony
Communication junior Erik Buckingham received the 2018 Kyrwood Summer Research Fellowship for original research on the 2016 Oscar-winning film, Get Out, under the advisement of Dr. Lee Pierce. The study, entitled “Black Women Be Knowing: Tears, Consciousness & Affect in Get Out,” elegantly investigates the roles of visual framing, black femininity, and the tear in the context of the film to argue for a cinematic rendering of black double consciousness in late neoliberal (white) America.
Erik's research was selected for presentation at the SUNY East Conference in April 2018 at Monroe Community College and has been accepted for publication in the 2018 issue of SUNY Geneseo's The Proceedings of GREAT Day (forthcoming). The project is currently undergoing revisions for submission to Critical Studies in Media Communication, a leading journal in the fields of communication and media studies. (Photo of Erik Buckingham and Dr. Lee Pierce / Photo by Atsushi Tajima)
Leandra Griffith ’16, a double major in English and Communication, has won a 2018–19 U.S. Student Fulbright English Teaching Assistant (ETA) award for Belgium. In News, Geneseo's web publication, Leandra says, “There is a strong desire in me to teach in Belgium where Dutch, French, and German are held as official national languages. I hope to gain in-depth experience with Belgium’s multicultural population while sharing my experiences with diversity from an American perspective.”
Miranda Fiero, Broadcast Director, WGSU and a senior Communication major, presented “Remote Broadcasts and Making Them Better Roundtable” at the 2017 CBI National Student Electronic Media Convention in San Antonio, TX on November 2–4, 2017. Remote broadcasts can be a great way to brand your station and get the community to be an active participant. The roundtable discussion focused on ways to start remote broadcasts at schools as well as you to improve current remotes.
Congratulations to Communication major, Laura Piazza who was recognized by SUNY Chancellor, Kristina M. Johnson for outstanding academic excellence and athletic achievement with the SUNY Chancellor’s Scholar-Athlete Award. Great job Laura!
2016 – 2017
Communication Alumna Chelsea Butkowski and Dr. Atsushi Tajima published a peer-reviewed journal article in Feminist Media Studies titled, “A Critical Examination of Visualized Femininity: Selective Inheritance and Intensification of Gender Posing from Historical Painting to Contemporary Advertising” (2017). Grounded on Erving Goffman’s Gender Advertisements (1976/79), the study comparatively examines classic European paintings and contemporary advertisements and argues the role of hyper-ritualization in constructing our notion of luxury. Chelsea initially started this study in COMN 368 Research in Media and Cultural Studies with Dr. Atsushi Tajima. (Photo of Chelsea Butkowski)
Communication Senior Corinne Shanahan received a Top Paper Award in the 2017 annual conference of the Eastern Communication Association. Her study is entitled, “Double-speak, Double-eat: Misleading Food Advertisements and Their Influence on Obesity in America.” By employing a theoretical lens of doublespeak (Lutz, 1989), Corinne conducts a critical rhetorical analysis on food advertisements. Corinne argues that food advertisements emphasizing health claims are often structurally misleading, which could cause adverse effect on consumer’s health. Corinne produced this study in COMN 353 Advertising as Social Communication with Dr. Atsushi Tajima. (Photo of Corinne Shanahan)
Communication Senior Riagan McMahon received Third Place in the Competitive Undergraduate Poster Session at the 2017 annual conference of the Eastern Communication Association. Her study is entitled, “‘Sports Cuties’ Sell: The Impact Diet- and Fitness-Oriented Advertising Has on Body Dissatisfaction and Anxiety Symptom Development among Women.” By analyzing body images and discourses in Shape Magazine, Riagan argues the fitness-appraisal nature of Shape provides unique and rather powerful narratives compared to other magazines for women. Riagan produced this study in COMN 353 Advertising as Social Communication with Dr. Atsushi Tajima. (Photo of Riagan McMahon)
Dr. Meredith Marko Harrigan was awarded the Roemer Summer Research Fellowship for her project titled “Motherhood and the Mother-Daughter Relationship.” This project involves two collaborations with Geneseo alumnae, including an investigation of daughters’ discursive constructions of their working mothers (with Seungji Yang, ’16) and an exploration of virtual and non-virtual disclosure patterns between mothers and daughters during emerging adulthood (with Megan Meadows, ’16). (Photo of Megan Meadows)
Dr. Meredith Marko Harrigan, along with Communication Alumnae, Alexandra Priore, Emily Wagner, and Katelyn Palka published a peer-reviewed journal article in the Journal of Family Communication titled “Preventing Face Loss in Donor-Assisted Families” (2017). The article describes parents’ experiences with face threats and how they attempt to prevent them using facework. This project began as a directed study (COMN 399) with Dr. Meredith Marko Harrigan. (Photo of Emily Wagner, ’14)
Geneseo Communication Department won a Top School Award at the 7th annual James C. McCroskey and Virginia P. Richmond Undergraduate Scholars Conference at the 108th annual conference of the Eastern Communication Association (ECA) in Boston, MA, March 29–April 2, 2017. Since ECA’s undergraduate conference started in 2011, a total of 78 original research projects by Geneseo Communication students have been accepted and presented, making Geneseo the largest presence in the conference.
Photo of 2016 Geneseo ECA participants: left top to bottom: Meghan Murphy, Riagan McMahon, and Corinne Shanahan; right top to bottom: Noah Pfeiffer, Nicole Heney, Olivia MacDonald, Kristen Paterno, Megan Tomaszewski, and Callista Fiegl / Photo by Atsushi Tajima)
Communication major Candace Pedraza has been recognized by the New York Press Association with a second-place award for a story about the Livingston County Suicide Task Force. Published by the Livingston County News, the article was written as the final project for Prof. Michael Saffran’s COMN 107: Foundations of Media Writing. Many of the competing entries came from large metropolitan dailies, such as papers from New York City and Buffalo. (Photo of Candace Pedraza)
Communication Alumna Kate Dunn received a 2017 Fullbright Scholarship. She is a Geneseo alumna, majoring in Communication and Environmental Studies (Class of 2015). She currently works as an editorial assistant for the Empire State Development Corporation and has written for numerous environmental/conservation organizations. She had a study abroad experience in the Netherlands in 2014 and is now looking forward to her experience in Malaysia. (Photo of Kate Dunn)
2015 – 2016
Dr. Meredith Marko Harrigan received the 2015–16 SUNY Chancellor’s Award for Teaching Excellence. This award is a system-level honor conferred to acknowledge and provide system-wide recognition and distinction for consistently superior professional achievement in teaching excellence. The receipt of this award makes Dr. Harrigan a role model in the SUNY system. (Photo of Dr. Meredith Marko Harrigan)
Geneseo Communication Department won a Top School Award at the 6th annual James C. McCroskey and Virginia P. Richmond Undergraduate Scholars Conference at the annual meeting of the 107th Eastern Communication Association (ECA) in Baltimore, MD, March 30–April 3, 2016 (tied with Penn State Schuykill). Two Geneseo students won a Top Paper Award, and one student won the Top Poster Award.
(Photo of 2016 Geneseo ECA participants; back from left to right: Alex Schuhart, Douglas Parks, Joseph Potischman, Gina Suriano, Allyson Pereyra, and Katherine Zaslavsky; front from left to right: Nicole Heney (Top Paper Award winner), Leandra Griffith (Top Poster Award winner), Anna Bertoldini, Kala Wilkins, Chi Phuc Khanh Huynh (Top Paper Award winner), Anna Fong, and Jade Brown; circle: Megan Meadows / Photo by Atsushi Tajima)
Communication major Chi Huynh received a Top Paper Award at the 2016 Eastern Communication Association annual conference. Her paper is entitled, “Out of Sight, Out of Communication? Private Disclosure in Proximal and Long-Distance Relationships.” With interview data, Chi explores how college students communicatively manage private information in long-distance and proximally-close relationships and highlights the role of updating and filtering in long-distance relationships. Chi produced this study in COMN 345 Theories of Interpersonal Communication with Dr. Meredith Marko Harrigan. (Photo of Chi Huynh)
Communication major Catherine Jones and Dr. Atsushi Tajima published a peer-reviewed journal article titled, “The Caucasianization of Jesus: Hollywood Transforming Christianity into a Racially Hierarchical Discourse” in The Journal of Religion and Popular Culture (2015; University of Toronto Press). Catherine originally started this project during her sophomore year in COMN 362 International Mass Communication with Dr. Atsushi Tajima. (Photo of Catherine Jones)
Communication major Nicole Heney received a Top Paper Award at the 2016 Eastern Communication Association annual conference. Her paper is entitled, “Making Meaning of Distance: Contradictions in Long-Distance Romantic Relationships.” With interview data, Nicole describes how partners communicatively manage the contradictory discourses of presence-absence and similarity-difference through a variety of methods. In doing so, she highlights the complexity of long-distance relationships. Nicole produced this study in COMN 345 Theories of Interpersonal Communication with Dr. Meredith Marko Harrigan. (Photo of Nicole Heney)
Communication major Leandra Griffith received the Top Poster Award at the 2016 Eastern Communication Association annual conference. Her work is entitled, “Can Given Names Give Empowerment? The Effects of Non-Conventional Names on Women.” While female names generally have more variations in both names themselves and spelling than male names, Leandra explores the reasons for this cultural practice by conducting surveys on both young women and their parents. Leandra produced this study in COMN 368 Research in Media and Cultural Studies with Dr. Atsushi Tajima. (Photo of Leandra Griffith)
WGSU was a finalist for two awards in the College Broadcasters Inc. 2016 National Student Production Awards competition. Work by students McKenna Miller (Best Public Service Announcement — Audio category, for a PSA for SUNY Geneseo's Office of Financial Aid) and Ian Thomas (News Reporting — Audio category, for a news story about campus environmental activism) was recognized at CBI's national Student Electronic Media Convention, Oct. 20–22, 2017 in Philadelphia.
2014 – 2015
Communication Senior Josephine Lukito and Dr. Atsushi Tajima published a peer-reviewed journal article in Newspaper Research Journal entitled, “Two National Newspapers Cover Recession Distinctively” (2014). This study analyzes The New York Times' and USA Today's coverage of the 2008 recession and proposes a new perspective to media framing research. This project began as a directed study (COMN 399) with Dr. Atsushi Tajima. (Photo of Josephine Lukito)
Geneseo Communication Department won the Top School Award (highest number of paper accepted from a single school) at the 5th annual James C. McCroskey and Virginia P. Richmond Undergraduate Scholars Conference at the annual meeting of the 106th Eastern Communication Association (ECA) in Philadelphia, PA, April 22–26, 2015. Two Geneseo students won a Top Paper Award, including the Top Paper Award.
Photo of 2015 Geneseo ECA participants: back from left to right: Dr. Atsushi Tajima, Kelsey McGrail, Samantha Brown, Jennifer O'Neil, Janelle Marxhausen, Cassandra Nicol, and Dr. Andrew Herman; front from left to right: Bethany Martone, Emily Tenenbaum, Jennie Conway (Top Paper Award winner), Taylor Quaranta, Chelsea Butkowski (Top Paper Award winner), and Dr. Meredith Marko Harrigan; circle: JiYeon Im / Photo by Keith Walters '11)
Communication major Chelsea Butkowski received the 2015 Richard Roark Award (co-awarded with Meghan Kearns). The Richard Roark Award is the highest-level college-wide award that recognizes the only one student in each graduating class. While the award values, ". . . books with which, he thought, every person could access the accumulated knowledge of all previous civilizations," Chelsea served as the President for Heard@Geneseo, a publication project which captures and records the rich history of the Geneseo community. Chelsea also served as the Editor-in-Chief for The Lamron during the 2014–15 academic year.
Chelsea also received the 2015 SUNY Chancellor's Award for Student Excellence. The Award honors students of the SUNY system for integrating their academic excellence with other aspects of their lives, such as campus involvement, leadership roles, and/or community service. Four students this year received this award.
Jennie Conway, a senior Communication major, received a Top Paper Award from the Eastern Communication Association. Her study is entitled, "The Future Looks Bleak?: Negotiation and Reimagination of Gender Roles in YA Dystopian Novels." Jennie closely examined the Divergent and The Hunger Games series by employing a critical gender discourse analysis. Jennie produced this study in COMN 368 Research in Media and Cultural Studies with Dr. Atsushi Tajima. (Photo of Jennie Conway)
Chelsea Butkowski, a senior Communication major, received the Top Paper Award from the Eastern Communication Association. Her study is entitled, "Veiled Subordination: The Transmission of Gender Posing from Fine Art to Modern Advertising." The study involved comparative analysis of historical fine arts and contemporary advertisements. Chelsea produced this study in COMN 368 Research in Media and Cultural Studies with Dr. Atsushi Tajima. (Photo of Chelsea Butkowski)
2013 – 2014
Canisius hockey twosome displays teamwork that saves lives.
Adjunct professor Nate Lull signed up to be a marrow donor, thanks to Canisius hockey player Chris Rumble, and his donation may save a life.
Professor Michael Saffran is quoted about the Rochester media's local news scene.
Professor Michael Saffran, who is also the Faculty Advisor for WGSU-FM, had an article published in celebration of College Radio Day (October 1) and the continued evolution of radio.
Brian and Casey McCormack are brothers who partnered up for three separate radio talk shows and also run commentary on SUNY Geneseo's Ice Knights hockey games.
Geneseo News and Events
To access the following stories, follow the link to the Lamron's website and conduct a search for the article there.
WGSU, Geneseo's campus radio station, is celebrating its fiftieth anniversary this year. It was founded February 18, 1963, and celebrations of the anniversary will continue throughout the year.
Dr. Mary Mohan's ongoing South Wedge project was recognized as a part of the College's Application for President Obama's National Community Service Honor Roll with Distinction.
In honor of WGSU's fiftieth anniversary this year, Geneseo Scene published an article about the value of working on WGSU. The article features both alumni and students and can be found on page five of the magazine.
A series of articles highlight past WGSU members and where they are now. These articles can be found on pages eight through thirteen of the e-Reader.
James C. McCroskey and Virginia P. Richmond Undergraduate Scholars Conference
Once again, SUNY Geneseo had a large number of papers accepted. One student received a Top-Paper Award.
This was the largest number among the participating schools. In addition, two students received a Top-Paper Award and one student received the Top-Poster Award.
SUNY Geneseo has a history of participating in the undergraduate conference, which is part of the meeting of the Eastern Communication Association. In 2015, the Department was proud to see eleven Geneseo students present their work.
SUNY Geneseo has a history of participating in this undergraduate conference, which is part of the meeting of the Eastern Communication Association. In 2014, the Department was proud to see eleven Geneseo students present their work.
SUNY Geneseo has a history of participating in this undergraduate conference, which is part of the meeting of the Eastern Communication Association. In 2013, the Department was proud to see sixteen presentations by seventeen Geneseo students.
Invasion of Privacy: After lifetime of travel, motorcyclist, photographer settles at Geneseo
Dr. Atsushi Tajima is featured in his second Invasion of Privacy article about his lifetime of travel and discovery; he is the jack-of-all-trades, with skill in photography, welding, motorcycle-racing, and flying airplanes.
WGSU takes new direction, increases professionalism
WGSU takes the station in a more "real-world" direction, implementing several changes but keeping the music the same.
Center for Community intern puts on first Greek Night
Senior Kevin Mejia, an intern for the Center for Community, coordinates the campus' first Greek Night on his own
Knight in the Life: WGSU disc jockeys demonstrate passion for variety
WGSU music director Oliver Horowitz and three assistant music directors (Katy Boland, Nathan Kahn, and Tom Silva) are praised for WGSU 89.3 FM's diverse musical playlist.
Invasion of Privacy: Senior Laura Vitto takes charge of multiple campus media forums
Station manager of WGSU 89.3 FM and managing editor of The Lamron, senior Laura Vitto has been working hard for Geneseo's communication outlets and aspires to be a journalist.
Invasion of Privacy: Senior Erik Talbot dabbles in media both on and off campus, specializes in sports journalism
Erik Talbot, a senior Communication major, has immersed himself in campus media and internships from Albany to Rochester.
Invasion of Privacy: Senior James Costanzo interns at NBC Sports, immerses self in sports journalism
Senior Communication major James Costanzo surrounds himself with campus media, from WGSU to his editing position in on the Lamron. He also interned at NBC this summer.
Invasion of Privacy: Senior Alex Fitzpatrick dedicates himself to the WGSU airwaves
Former Communication student Alex Fitzpatrick rose to station manager of 89.3 WGSU, Geneseo's student-run radio station.
Professor and student partner with developer to help revitalize Springwater
Gabrielle Gosset and Dr. Mary Mohan worked with developer Greg O'Connell to help improve Livingston County's Springwater.
Invasion of Privacy: Atsushi Tajima travels world, regales students with experience
Dr. Atsushi Tajima, assistant professor, has had quite a journey before arriving at Geneseo, doing everything from studying Alaskan Inuits to racing motorcycles.
Livingston County News
Professor Mike Saffran's Mass Media Management class weighed in on the discussion about the suspension of Brian Williams, NBC News anchor.
Another article, this time for the Livingston County News, was written about Gabrielle Gosset and Dr. Mary Mohan's work for Livingston County's Springwater.
The New York Times
Students of COMN 341 (Public Relations Case Problems) helped to design public relations and marketing strategies for businesses in Mount Morris, enlisted by Greg O'Connell.
Professor Mike Saffran was quoted for the Photo of the Week article, which featured the erection of SUNY Geneseo's radio tower for WGSU in 1963.
SUNY Geneseo's campus radio station, WGSU-FM (89.3), and student-run television station, GSTV (Channel 4), have partnered this semester for on-air weather forecasts.