CommSGC Mission Statement
The purpose of the Communication Studies Graduate Community (CommSGC) is to facilitate the well-being of graduate students in the Communication Studies Department and to foster relationships among the Department’s faculty and graduate students. CommSGC representatives are elected by the graduate student community and are asked to serve a one-year term. CommSGC will meet as a group throughout the school year to address graduate student concerns, plan Department events, pass along communication from faculty and staff, and serve as a voice among the larger graduate student community at the University of Texas. Every member of CommSGC is expected to uphold the duties of his or her position as described on the CommSGC website. If an elected official fails to fulfill his or her responsibilities, CommSGC will vote on having the representative replaced by another graduate student. CommSGC is here to enhance the graduate school experience within the Communication Studies community and should make decisions aligned with the spirit of this undertaking.
CommSGC Positions and Responsibilities | 2022 – 2023 Academic Year
Chair (PhD Representative) | Mackenzie Pike
The CommSGC Chair’s role is to serve and support the graduate community and the elected representatives on this committee. The president is responsible for facilitating regular meetings, participating in events, responding to student concerns, and serving as a representative of graduate students to faculty and staff.
Vice Chair (MA Representative) | Karissa Hernandez
The Vice Chair's role is to support the communication studies department through sustained engagement with policies and events that affect or support its members. They also assist the President in meeting the needs of the graduate community through communication and coordination of CommSGC events.
Treasurer | Olivia Gellar
The Treasurer oversees the acquiring of funds used by CommSGC for events and fairly distributing scholarship funds for professional development and conference travel each semester to graduate students.
Secretary | Yohanna Tesfai
The Secretary is responsible for keeping the minutes of meeting. They take detailed notes, update information/notes as needed, and share them with CommSGC members.
Professional Development Chair | Jiayu Sun
The Professional Development Chair is charged with providing events and opportunities for graduate students to develop specific skills, habits, knowledge, or networking connections that will better prepare them for both academic and non-academic careers. This responsibility involves the creation, coordination, organization, and facilitation of all components required to provide such events/opportunities every semester. 2022-2023 Committee: Nancy Carlson, Yating Yang, Maggie Solice, Rachel Herschmann, Caroline Murray.
Social Events Co-Chairs | Yating Yang, Braidyn Lazenby
The Social Events Chair (s) is responsible for planning and coordinating social events to create a sense of community within the department. They plan a variety of events throughout the semester that allow graduate students, faculty, and staff to connect. 2022-2023 Committee: Rachel Herschmann, Moo Sun Kim, Caroline Murray.
Advocacy Chair | Open
The chair will keep a pulse of the various issues affecting graduate students and work with CommSGC to provide resources and make positive changes.
Fundraising Chair | Ed Hunt
Manages fundraising efforts for the Department of Communication Studies Graduate Student Community (including 40 by 40, t-shirt sales, etc.).
Transition Coordinator | Open
The Transition coordinator is selected by the outgoing board to maintain continuity between the current and elected board. The chair’s responsibilities will include collecting agendas, notes, and reflections from outgoing board members and providing advice to the newly elected board during their tenure.
Graduate Student Assembly Representative | Mackenzie Pike
The Graduate Student Assembly Representative serves as the liaison between GSA and CommSGC.Duties include attending monthly GSA meetings and serving on a GSA committee (as determined by GSA). Alternate Representative: Karissa Hernandez
Graduate Communication Council Representative | Stephanie Menhart
The GCC Representative will serve as the liaison between GCC and CommSGC by attending GCC meetings (held bi-monthly), reporting GCC initiatives and graduate student issues back to the committee and reporting the minutes of these meetings to CommSGC.
First-year PhD representative | Jacinta Tran
First-year MA representatives | Caroline Murray, Rachel Herschmann