NCA Member News
Dr. Tammy Jeffries, Western Kentucky University (WKU), passed away of natural causes on January 17, 2016.
Originally from Michigan, Dr. Jeffries completed her M.A. under the direction of Mark Orbe at Western Michigan University. From there, she moved to Florida, where Jane Jorgenson directed her dissertation on the diversity education contained in our field's interpersonal communication textbooks. Dr. Jeffries earned her Ph.D. from the University of South Florida in 2013. In 2014, she joined the WKU Department of Communication as a Visiting Minority Postdoctoral Fellow.
At WKU, Dr. Jeffries quickly made a home for herself and created a home, too, for students in the department and across the university. Students sought out her courses in Interpersonal and Intercultural Communication, but her real contribution came in her undergraduate Interracial Communication class. She maintained that communication between racial groups is as important to study as is communication between cultural groups. Given the current racial climate in America, her timely focus made a difference.
In her classrooms, everyone felt welcomed and spoke out freely. Tammy took a deeply personal interest in helping students and motivating them to keep working and growing, even when that meant they had to face up to difficult situations and consequences.
At the university level, Dr. Jeffries led students in a new, highly successful organization called the InterCULTURAL Club. This club took interracial communication straight into students' lives. Hosting World Cafes, using role-playing and board games such as 'Keep It Real,' Dr. Jeffries led large cross-sectional groups of students in hard conversations about race.
In the Media
Mitchell McKinney, University of Missouri, was quoted in a Politifact article about the history of presidential candidates dropping out of debates.
Micheal Stefanone, University of Buffalo, was quoted in a Men’s Health article about decisions individuals make on social media.
Joseph Turow, University of Pennsylvania, was featured in a Fedscoop article about Americans relinquishing control of their data to companies on the Internet.
Michael Waltman, University of North Carolina, was interviewed by Janell Ross of “The Fix” in the Washington Post for a story on the mainstreaming of hate in politics.
Michael Waltman, University of North Carolina, was quoted in a Daily Beast article by Gideon Resnick for a story about White Nationalist groups endorsing Donald Trump in the election through robocalls.
Ellen Wartella, Northwestern University, was quoted in a HealthDay article about the social impact of technology use on teens and young adults.
Lou Davidson Tillson, Facing Your Fears: Speaking Up When You Really Feel Like Throwing Up, Kendall Hunt 978-1-4652-7454-0