Current Graduate Students

Nickolas Baskins

Nickolas Baskins comleted his BS in Communication at PSU and continued on to the Master's program. He is currently working on projects relating to communication and technology. After grad school, he plans on becoming a college professor and teaching family communication.

Photo of Molly Brown

Molly Brown

Molly Brown is a graduate of Johnson State College in Vermont with a degree in Art History. She moved to Portland two years ago by way of Colorado. She enjoys rock climbing, skiing, and working in her backyard garden. She is currently working towards a MS in Communication and is particularly interested in studying language and gender, breaking down stereotypes, and learning how to adapt language to be more inclusive to all. She hopes to use her degree while working in the nonprofit sector and perhaps continue on towards a PhD. 

Laura Glass

Laura Glass has found that her passion lies in the intersection between science, technology, communication and marketing. She appreciates the opportunity to be working with such dedicated faculty at PSU and is in the process of writing her thesis on technology adoption. Upon graduation, Laura hopes to continue focusing on innovative technologies and campaign/product strategy. Laura's hobbies include outdoor exploring in the Pacific Northwest, wine tasting in the Willamette Valley, being a Portland foodie, and water coloring. 

Photo of Jordan Johnson

Jordan Johnson

Jordan Johnson graduated from Hastings College, a small liberal arts college in central Nebraska. She majored in music/piano performance, minored in biology, and played on the women's basketball team. She just moved to Portland this summer from Nebraska and is pursuing her Master's degree in Communication while serving as a Graduate Teaching Assistant in the communication department as well. She's interested in interpersonal communication and its affiliation with social media and the human connection.

Zoe Larson  

Zoe Larson received her BA in Public Health with an emphasis in Community Health Education from Portland State University. Her research interests include health communication and qualitative methodologies. Zoe's thesis is a quantitative investigation of HIV, stigma, and attribution of causal emotions. Upon graduation, Zoe plans to pursue a career in health communication. 

Demian Lucas

Demian Lucas is currently a graduate student at Portland State University. Her academic interests include organizational communication and human resource management. She completed her Bachelor of Science degree in Communication at Portland State University. Demian plans to continue her career in human resource management with a focus on organizational communication, change management and personal agency. Demian is SPHR and SHRM-SCP certified, and she was able to use the methods coursework from her Master's Degree program to help her complete her recertifications. She is also a proud member of Zeta Phi Beta Sorority, Incorporated. Demian will be presenting on code switching and communication effectiveness at the Oregon Women in Higher Education conference in February 2019. 

Photo of Taylor Martin

Taylor Martin

Taylor Martin received a Bachelors Degree in Multimedia Journalism and Public Relations from Milligan College in east Tennessee. During her time as an undergraduate, Taylor wrote and presented an academic paper titled 'Viewer Discretion Advised: How Freedom Given to Exclusive Television Networks Enhances Audiences Preception,' which delved into the evolution of television content and its impact on cultural norms and expectations. Other interests of Taylor's include how individuals balance technology, mass communication and everyday life. Upon graduation, Taylor hopes to continue her research in the communication field and one day eat chicken parmesan with Amy Poehler. 

Elisangela McFarland

Elis McFarland completed her Bachelor's degree in Journalism at Centro de Ensino Unificado de Brasilia. She has more than 10 years experience as a journalist, covering Brazilian politics and environmental issues in the Amazon rain forest. At Portland State, she wants to study communication campaigns that seek to improve the health of vulnerable communities and work on strategies that will guide policy makers.


Photograph of Ryden Meyer

Ryden Meyer

Ryden Meyer graduated from Carroll College with a Bachelors Degree in Communications and Public Relations. Throughout his life Ryden has been passionate about communication and argumentation. He has been involved in the speech and debate community as a competitor, coach and judge for over ten years. After graduating from college Ryden spent time in the public sector before going back to school to pursue a Masters Degree in communication. Ryden hopes to deepen his knowledge of the communication field and use it to pursue his passion in communication and speech and debate.


Photo of Dawn Nolan

Dawn Nolan

Dawn graduated with a BS in Communication Studies and a minor in Sustainability from Portland State University in 2018. Her research interests include science communication and its credibility within social media. She is also interested in social and cultural communication, and diving into how personal, social and cultural identities are reflected and constructed through communicative processes. Dawn's additional interests include the effects of community engagement, environmental education, and adapting science communication to the changing media landscape. Upon graduation, she would like to further her path into higher education and complete a doctoral program in sociology or communication. When Dawn isn't in the classroom or studying, you can find her hiking, rowing on the Willamette River, or hanging out a local science pub. 

Samantha Reynolds 

Samantha Reynolds graduated from Wittenberg University with a Bachelor of Arts in English with minors in Creative Writing, Cinema Studies and Photography in 2014. Samantha is writing her thesis on mental health in the workplace and what elements within workplace culture facilitates individuals discussing their condition with their colleagues. Following graduation, she plans to continue her career in the eCommerce copy production world while exploring how communication and framing shape consumer habits. When she's not reading for class, you can find Samantha watercolor painting or shooting a roll of film.

Moira Smith

Moira Smith is a graduate student at Portland State University studying how perceptions of capabilities on social media impact how users provide and obtain emotional support. She received her B.A. in Communication from Iowa State University and was very happy to accept nine months of rain to escape Midwestern winters. Once she graduates, she plans to find a position in communication research, spend more time with her two cats, and convince her housemates to adopt even more animals. 

Dan Vandehey 

Dan Vandehey graduated with a BS in Communication from Portland State University in 2017 and is currently on track to graduate with an MS in Communication in the Spring of 2019. His Master's Thesis explores idiomatic language and will pursue cognitive science research methods to contribute to the debate over whether people process idioms as a phrase or as a lexical unit. He would like to use his degree to find a position with a multi-national company offering opportunities to work and live overseas. Dan has never traveled outside of the North American continent, and at this stage of his life, his wife and he are ready for some adventures outside of their comfort zone.

Department of Communication Graduate Program Handbook