Summer kicks off today, but our profs have been mining it since May. We check in on their work, travel, and play.

Summer greetings from Oakland University tenured and tenure-track journalism faculty

Holly: Thanks to Dr. Adina Schneeweis, Dr. Chiaoning Su, Dr. Suzy Lee and Dr. Marsha Ma — our exceptional colleagues — for giving us a glimpse into their summer lives. Caution: whirlwind of travel, productivity, ice cream, curry wurst, and life changes ahead. And there’s a fun payoff for reading to the end.

Special note to Dr. Ma: You will see a Grizzly, soon enough!

Dr. Schneeweis

My family often asks me what I do over the summer, why I’m not “off,” since there are no classes. Well, there are summer classes, which I am teaching this year — JRN 2000 Introduction to Journalism and News Writing. And there is a lot more to a professor’s job than teaching. Just as much of my time is dedicated to research, which I squeeze in during the fall and winter semesters, but do a lot of over the summer months.

So far, I have traveled for both work and pleasure. I just returned from Europe, where I attended the annual conference of the International Communication Association in Prague. I co-hosted a workshop with our very own Dr. Chiaoning Su, about teaching diversity at the same time as teaching journalism and writing skills.

Dr. Schneeweis and her children celebrate her birthday in front of one of the landmark statues in downtown Cluj, Romania, in May 2018. Coincidentally, this same plaza is from where she left Romania when she came for graduate school in 2002.

After the conference, my family joined me in Prague, and we did some touristing around (can that be a verb now?). The highlight of the trip was going on a 22-mile bike ride from Prague to the Karlstejn Castle along the Vltava River — incredible sights and delicious stops for snacks (homemade elderberry syrup, smoked sausage, homemade pickled peppers, horseradish sauce, and ice cream), and dipping in the river. The Museum of Communism in Prague was also a fascinating stop for me, given I grew up under Communism in Romania. We also visited my family in Romania, which is always nourishing and fun (so much good food!).

Back in the States, I have finished some reviews to a journal article based on interviews with NGO workers from Romania that do intervention in Roma communities. These summer months are primarily dedicated, though, to working  on a book project about advocacy communication — learning from advocacy for the Roma, and connecting it to other ways activists do successful intervention, lobby, and help change policy worldwide. Later in August, I am going to Washington, DC, where I will attend the yearly convention of the Association for Education in Journalism and Communication (AEJMC), to present some of my research on advocacy communication.

Oh, and then I start preparing for fall classes, and for the year-long workshops I’m going to host through the Center for Excellence in Teaching and Learning, as their 2018-2019 Faculty Fellow. Summer always breezes by way faster than I’d like it to, though I promise I will find some time for playing with my kids, swimming, and gardening.

Dr. Su

Many people think that academics have the entire summer off. That is a big misconception. Summer is often our most productive time.

My summer has been pretty busy thus far. I’m teaching an online course, sharing my enthusiasm in Public Relations with 16 students. I attended the annual conference of International Communication Association (ICA) in Prague. I co-hosted a workshop with my lovely colleague Dr. Adina Schneeweis to talk about teaching diversity in journalism. I also presented a paper focusing on the intersection of social media and political engagement in Taiwan. Meanwhile, my book chapter entitled “China is Laughing at US. SAD!: Trump’s Twitter Diplomacy” has just been published. I’m really excited about this new research direction on media and public diplomacy.

But summer is also a time to expand one’s personal horizons as well. In the past month, in addition to conferencing in Prague, I traveled around three German cities, including Munich, Berlin, and Dresden. I’m particularly impressed with the way Germans deal with their difficult past, and their efforts to make sure history doesn’t repeat itself. I also found out I’m in love with German food, especially curry wurst and leberkäse. Unfortunately, I can’t say the same for German beer.

The next two months will be my time to return to my home country, Taiwan. There I will conduct interviews with foreign correspondents to learn their perspectives on this island nation’s international struggles. I will also campaign for my father, who is running for the mayor of New Taipei City.

See, I told you summer is always busy. Now you better believe me.  🙂

Dr. Lee

Dr. Lee meets a giant succulent in the desert southwest. Love the wide-brimmed hat!

It’s my pleasure to share with you the fact that I am spending much of my summer in Korea. But on my way, I Itraveled through the southwest areas of the U.S. with my friend in May. It was amazing. The photos will prove this!

Then, I went to Vietnam with my family. Sadly, my brother was left home alone to take care of two dogs.

But, of course, I am not just having fun in Korea. As Chiaoning said, summer is time to catch up on research projects!

One part of my dissertation has been accepted at Journal of Business Research (JBR) and I am finalizing it. Two papers that I co-authored are just published at Journal of Current Issues & Research in Advertising. Hooray!

During the next two months, I will present  guest lectures at Korean companies regarding how advertising can help their business. Now, I don’t know how to give a guest-lecture in Korean. Haha.

Also, I will focus on a few more research projects, which I am very excited about.

Happy summer!!

Dr. Ma

My summer is a busy and fulfilling one.  It started with my Ph.D. graduation. Yay, I made it!!

My family then went on a trip to visit the Yellowstone and Grand Teton National Parks in early June. It was so much fun. We saw bison, elk, moose, black bears, coyotes, wolves, ospreys, and golden eagles. Sadly, we did not see a grizzly bear. Maybe we will see them next time.

Dr. Ma and her boyfriend at the Grand Prismatic in Yellowstone National Park

My summer travel does not end at this moment, however.  In the following weeks, I will pack and move to Michigan, where I will start the next chapter of my life: working as a tenure-track assistant professor at Oakland University. I am looking forward to meeting my new colleagues and students and calling Michigan my second home in the States.

As for research, I will present a theoretical paper on immersive storytelling at the annual conference of AEJMC in August. I am also working on multiple projects, which focus on emerging media and health. More excitingly, I get to prepare for the class that I will teach in the fall. If you are a journalism/PR/com student at OU, I want you to know that I am excited to work with you.

  • Dr. Schneeweis and her husband and children stop for their destination after a 35-km (22-mile) bike ride outside of Prague, the Czech Republic, in May 2018. Karlstejn Castle was founded in 1348 by Charles IV to safekeep crown jewels and other royal treasures, and is today one of the most visited Czech castles.

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