NCA Inside & Out

Summer Conferences

NCA Summer Conference Recaps

September 5, 2019

Denison University Hosts NCA Institute for Faculty Development

The NCA Institute for Faculty Development, also known as the “Hope Conference,” was held July 14 –20 at Denison University in Granville, Ohio. Forty-five attendees representing 21 states participated in the annual conference, which is designed for undergraduate Communication faculty who want to build collaborative research and pedagogical relationships, learn about new directions in theory and pedagogy, and develop new course area expertise.

This year’s seminars included “The Collaborative Turn: The Communication-Based Reformation of Decision Making in Organizations and Communities,” led by Stanley Deetz (University of Colorado Boulder); “Place Matters. Communication, Rhetoric and the Centrality of Place in Cultural Life,” led by Greg Dickinson (Colorado State University); “Take(s) Heart!: Writing, Teaching, and Researching with Care and Compassion,” led by Carolyn Ellis (University of South Florida); “Creativity, Aesthetics, and Dialogue in Everyday Communication,” led by William Rawlins (Ohio University); “Rhetorics and Cultures of the Visual,” led by Claire Sisco King (Vanderbilt University); and “Becoming a Resilient Scholar,” led by Catherine Squires (University of Minnesota). Laura Ellingson (Santa Clara University) served as the 2019 Scholar-in-Residence.

NCA Hosts 2019 Chairs’ Summer Institute

NCA hosted its Chairs’ Summer Institute June 13–15 at The Hotel at the University of Maryland. This year’s theme, “Chairperson Leadership: Advocating, Mentoring, and Managing,” attracted more than 20 department chairs to the DC area for a workshop designed to help department chairs better understand and address a variety of issues within their departments and larger university communities. Session topics included the role of administrator, negotiating identity as a chair and administrator, and balancing research, teaching, and administrative responsibilities; managing issues of faculty mentoring and advocating for the department and faculty; identifying a departmental vision, goal-setting, generating faculty buy-in, and strategic planning; recruiting, hiring, and evaluating faculty; and managing departmental and campus crises.

Seminar leaders included John Caughlin (University of Illinois), Thomas Endres (University of Northern Colorado), Maurice Hall (The College of New Jersey), Kent Ono (University of Utah), and Helen Sterk (Western Kentucky University).

NCA and Shenzhen University of China Hold Forum on “Communication Innovation, New Media, and Digital Journalism”

Numerous NCA members participated in “Communication Innovation, New Media, and Digital Journalism,” a conference held June 27–29 in Shenzhen, China and in Hong Kong. Co-hosted by NCA and the Shenzhen University of China, the conference brought together Communication scholars and media practitioners to engage in conversations about cutting-edge communication-based issues.

The conference explored communication in three tracks: “Experiments in Communication Innovation,” led by Rolien Susanne Hoyng (Chinese University of Hong Kong) and Chen Changfeng (Tsinghua University); “Intersections in New Media and Health Communication,” led by Amy Hasinoff (Colorado University Denver) and Yuqiong Zhao (Shenzhen University of China); and “The Digital Journalism Challenge,” led by Qingwen Dong (University of the Pacific) and Xiaojin Gu (Shenzhen University of China). 

In addition to conference presentations and workshops, participants engaged in a pre-conference workshop on international communication and visited one of the world’s largest social media companies, TenCent.

NCA Doctoral Honors Seminar Held at University of South Florida

The annual Doctoral Honors Seminar was held July 21–24 and hosted by the Department of Communication at the University of South Florida. Thirty doctoral students from more than 20 Communication doctoral programs attended the DHS, where they worked with distinguished researchers to discuss current topics and research within Communication Studies, Media and Society, and Rhetoric and/or Performance Studies.

This year’s DHS, themed “Communication, Engagement, and Social Justice” was led by faculty seminar leaders Erin Donovan (University of Texas), Rachel Griffin (University of Utah), Matt McAllister (The Pennsylvania State University), Mark McPhail (Indiana University), James Olufowote (University of Oklahoma), Belinda Stillion Southard (University of Georgia), Tracy Stephenson Shaffer (Louisiana State University), Jan Van den Bulck (University of Michigan), and Heather Zoller (University of Cincinnati).

NCA/AFA Summer Conference on Argumentation (ALTA Conference) Held at Snowbird Ski Resort

Nearly 150 scholars and students gathered at the Snowbird Ski Resort near Alta, Utah, for the 2019 NCA/AFA Summer Conference on Argumentation. Co-sponsored by the National Communication Association, the American Forensic Association, and the University of Utah, the conference brought together scholars interested in all aspects of argument. Those scholars, from across the nation and around the world, engaged in three days of programs and exchanges to further research in argumentation. Often called "the Alta Conference," the event is the oldest continuous academic conference in argumentation study and was first held in 1979.