PhD, University of Southern California, 2009
MA, University of Southern California, 2007
I am a health communication scholar studying how health information can best be communicated to individuals in different contexts and through different channels. I study both micro-level processes of persuasion and social influence, as well as the more macro-level health communication that occurs in society. I am particularly interested in how media and pop culture influence health. Tobacco control is the primary context in which I have focused my research. I am specifically interested in how media and pop culture influence tobacco use among adolescents and young adults, and how these influences can be used to inform and implement tobacco use prevention interventions. My first on-going project in this area, funded by a K01 award from NIDA/FDA, examines how persuasive marketing tactics used in tobacco ads influences youth tobacco use. My second on-going project examines how tobacco use varies by youth peer crowd/subculture and how tobacco use prevention interventions can leverage peer crowds to develop and target materials. These research areas leverage my expertise in persuasion, message design, media effects and health behavior. In addition to my work in tobacco control, I study cancer communication, with a particular focus on cervical cancer and HPV.
Honors and Awards
PHEHP (Public Health Education and Health Promotion section of APHA) Health Education Materials Contest Award for The Tamale Lesson
Top research presentation award, D.C. Area Health Communication Conference