2023-2024 Fellows

Graduate Student Fellows

Dorcas Anabire

Dorcas Anabire

Dorcas Anabire is a Ph.D. student in Technical Communication and Rhetoric and a Presidential Doctoral Research Fellow at Utah State University. Her research focuses on ways design can be used to address social justice issues in workplace and academic settings. Her most recent research investigates how designers can engage in user-centered design (UCD) with limited resources, particularly when designing for marginalized populations, and inclusive recruitment practices for recruiting minoritized students, specifically international students in higher education.

Saeed Ahmed

Saeed Ahmad

Saeed Ahmad joined the Department of Sociology as a graduate student in August 2021 with social inequality as the major and social environment as the minor. His research interest focus on migration and integration, gender-based violence in the family sphere, political participation, persuasion among youth, etc. He is a dedicated instructor that seeks to increase awareness of social issues and self-empowerment. His work has been published in journals including Computers in Human Behavior, Journal of interpersonal violence, Journal of Religion and Health, Marriage & Family Review, Journal of Human Behavior in the Social Environment, and Journal of Family Issues.

Zubair Barket

Zubair Barket

Zubair Barkat, is a second-year Ph.D. student in the sociology and anthropology department, under the supervision of Dr. Jessica Schad. As an Intersectional Fellow, his research focuses on relational autoethnography and is conducted in close collaboration with a transgender factory worker in Bangladesh. Together, they delve into the everyday struggles faced by workers, using shared storytelling and conversations to unveil the complex dynamics of the hidden global supply chain. Before joining Utah State University, Zubair had a successful career as a development researcher, collaborating with prestigious agencies like UK Aid, USAID, and more. His practical experience enriches his academic pursuits, effectively bridging theory with real-world impact. Zubair's aspirations extend beyond academia. He envisions a future where he inspires others as a professor, sociologist, and writer.

mufti nadimul quamar ahmed

Mufti Nadimul Quamar Ahmed

Mufti Nadimul Quamar Ahmed is a second-year Ph.D. student in the Department of Sociology and Anthropology. His research interests include climate change perception, social impacts of climate change and natural disasters, gender dimensions in coping and adaptation strategies, environmental dimensions of fertility and migration, etc. Mufti is from Bangladesh and has completed his BSS and MSS degrees, both majoring in Sociology, from Shahjalal University of Science and Technology, Sylhet, Bangladesh. Mufti has some publications appeared in renowned journals like Environment, Development, and Sustainability (Springer), PlosOne, Environmental Monitoring and Assessment (Springer), Arabian Journal of Geosciences (Springer), Earth Systems and Environment (Springer), SN Social Science (Springer), Frontier's in Climate (Frontiers), etc.

Alana Haupert

Alana Haupert

Alana Haupert is a first year master's student in the communication studies and philosophy department. She is from Indiana and has received her B.A. from Purdue University in corporate communication. Her research interests lie in how individuals deal with romantic relationships on social media throughout various relational stages. Currently, she is working on how individuals respond to a breakup online depending upon the amount of breakup distress and the gender they have. She is also interested in both how gender and sexual orientation affect the performance that is played out online through computer mediated communication. As a fellow, and graduate instructor, she hopes to promote inclusive and equitable environments here at USU.

Mudasir Mustafa

Mudasir Mustafa

Mudasir Mustafa is a Ph.D. candidate in Sociology, specializing in Social Demography. Her research revolves around health disparities and diverse identities, both within and outside of the United States. Her dissertation investigates the role of maternal adverse childhood experiences in non-live births, covering miscarriages, stillbirths, and abortions. She has published articles in many prestigious peer-reviewed journals. She taught Social Statistics at USU and several courses in Pakistan. She loves mentoring students interested in racial and sexual health disparities. She passionately supports enhancing the mental health and well-being of communities by advocating for policy enhancements. She also strives to create an inclusive class environment where students feel comfortable reaching out to her for support. Alongside her academic pursuits, she serves as the graduate student representative of the College of Humanities and Social Sciences in the Graduate Student Council (GSC). Being part of GSC, she is working on provisions for childcare subsidies for graduate students, particularly for international students and people of color. In addition to working with her spouse to raise two young children, she enjoys playing board games and table tennis in her leisure time. 

Emily slater

Emily Slater

Emily Slater is from Mission, BC, a town an hour East of Vancouver, and she has fond memories growing up on acreage there. She lived in her home-province studying a Bachelor of Sociology, and Master of Public Administration. She continues to be inspired by learning from the diverse people in her life, and as a doctoral student in Instructional Technology and Learning Sciences. She takes a compassionate, community-building approach as a graduate research assistant, instructor, and student council president for ITLS. As a fellow, she will contribute to an inclusive and safe culture, and conduct research that promotes equity at USU and the surrounding area

Research Fellows

Chen Chen

Dr. Chen Chen

Dr. Chen Chen (she/her) is an assistant professor of technical communication and rhetoric in the department of English. She received her Ph.D. in Communication, Rhetoric, & Digital Media from North Carolina State University. Her research focuses on advocacy and resistant rhetorical practices by marginalized communities as civic and tactical technical communication in transnational contexts. In particular, she has been working on disaster response communications in Chinese and Chinese diasporic communities during COVID-19 and other natural crises as well as the feminist activism of transnational Chinese communities. As a research fellow, she will examine how members of the Chinese diaspora in North America use technologies for transnational activism and analyze relevant issues of technology design and governance that impact their user experiences.

Colby Tofel Grehl

Dr. Colby Tofel-Grehl

Dr. Colby Tofel-Grehl is an associate professor in the School of Teacher Education & Leadership at Utah State University. Her scholarship interrogates the structures, systems, and practices that foster inequities across STEM learning environments. She designs teacher professional development and curricular materials within frameworks of rightful presence and critical theories to facilitate minoritized rural youth’s success within STEM spaces. This work leverages the affordances of Making and data science to center students’ identities and cultures within authentic and empowering STEM work. She is principal investigator of over $19 million in federal grants, including a National Science Foundation CAREER grant to study and develop a new model of rural STEM teacher professional learning and a U.S. Department of Education GEAR-UP grant. She received the 2019 Award for Significant Contribution to Educational Measurement and Research Methodology from Division D of the American Educational Research Association and the 2020 Early Career Science Teacher Educator of the Year Award from the Association for Science Teacher Educators. In 2021, the National Science Foundation’s ITEST Program recognized her grant, Project ESTITCH, as one of three nationally outstanding projects in the service of broadening participation in STEM.

Julia Gossard

Dr. Julia Gossard

Dr. Julia M. Gossard is Associate Dean for Research in the College of Humanities and Social Sciences, Associate Professor of History, and Distinguished Associate Professor of Honors Education. As a scholar, she examines the history of society through quantitative and qualitative research methods. Dr. Gossard has received competitive research funding from the American Historical Association, the Mellon Foundation, the Newberry Library, the Society for the History of Childhood & Youth, the Society for French Historical Studies, and the American Society for Eighteenth-Century Studies, to name a few. Dr. Gossard’s excellence in research has been recognized with the Fass-Sandin Prize (2019) from the Society for the History of Childhood & Youth as well as the Best Article Prize (2017) from the Journal of the History of Childhood and Youth along with several honorable mention citations from other prestigious organizations for her publications. In 2021 she published her book, Young Subjects: Children, State-Building, and Social Reform in the 18th-century French World, with McGill-Queen’s University Press. In 2023, she published Habits of Mind: Designing General Education Courses for Student Success (Open Access with USU). She is currently on Encountering Childhoods in Vast Early America (under contract with Routledge Press. A proponent of high-impact, innovative teaching, Dr. Gossard’s teaching portfolio at the graduate and undergraduate levels is expansive with specialties in gender, family, sexuality, and childhood; the American, French, and Haitian Revolutions; and historical research methods and theory. Each summer, Dr. Gossard helps facilitate the Mountain West Center’s Bennion Teachers’ Workshop.  

C.R. Grimmer

Dr. C. R. Grimmer

C. R. Grimmer (they/them) is an Assistant Professor of Poetry at Utah State University. Their books include The Lyme Letters (Texas Tech University Press),  O–(ezekiel's wife) (GASHER Journal and Press), and The Poetry Vlog: Critical Edition (forthcoming from University of Michigan Press). They created and host teaching series such as The Poetry Vlog (TPV), and have poems and research in in journals such as Poetry Magazine, Prairie Schooner, FENCE Magazine, and The Comparatist. They have taught in higher education for over 13 years. Learn more and be in touch at crgrimmer.com.

Li Guo

Dr. Li Guo

Li Guo is a professor of Asian studies at Utah State University. Guo’s research bridges gender studies, narrative theory, vernacular cultures, film, visuality, and animation. She is the author of Writing Gender in Early Modern Chinese Women’s Tanci Fiction (Purdue University Press, 2021) and Women’s Tanci Fiction in Late Imperial and Early Twentieth-Century China (Purdue, 2015). She has co-edited two volumes. One is Ecologies of Translation in East and South East Asia, 1600-1900 (with Patricia Sieber and Peter Kornicki, Amsterdam University Press, 2022). Another is Games and Play in Chinese and Sinophone Cultures (with Douglas Eyman and Hongmei Sun, University of Washington Press, under contract).  

Jeiran Hasan

Dr. Jeiran Hasan

Azerbaijani-American flutist Dr. Jeiran Hasan is the Assistant Professor of Flute at Utah State University. An active and versatile musician, Hasan enjoys a multi-faceted career as a flutist and educator. A sought-after master teacher and adjudicator, Jeiran has given masterclasses around the globe, on four continents and the Middle East and in numerous languages, including Azerbaijani, Russian, Spanish, and Arabic. Dr. Hasan is also a frequent presenter and clinical at flute fairs and colleges and universities across the U.S. A champion for new music, she is commissioning and premiering numerous new works for flute especially by female Azerbaijani composers. Jeiran is the Vice President of the Utah Flute Association. As a committee member of the Inclusion, Diversity, Equity, and Accessibility Committee through the National Flute Association, she is the co-founder and mentor of the Young Artist Mentorship Program, which serves to provide additional career opportunities for traditionally marginalized flute students. Dr. Hasan is a LefreQue Sound Bridge performing artist and holds degrees from the University of Iowa (D.M.A.) and the Cleveland Institute of Music (MM and BM). www.j-hasan.com

Tasha Iglesias

Dr. Tasha Iglesias

Dr. Tasha Iglesias currently serves as a Lecturer in the School of Education, for the University of California, Riverside, Utah State University, Salt Lake Community College and Southern New Hampshire University. Dr. Iglesias earned a Doctorate in Educational Leadership (Ed.D) at California State University Long Beach and teaches in the Education and Social Sciences field. Dr. Iglesias’s dissertation was titled “Each One, Teach One”: The Impact of a Hip Hop Learning Community on the Cultural Wealth of Foster Youth in Higher Education. Dr. Iglesias’s research interests include: Culturally Sustaining Pedagogy, Hip Hop Pedagogy and Praxis, and the history of Hip Hop as a culture. Dr. Iglesias develops curriculum, trains professors, consults with organizations and educational institutions and presents her research across the world. Outside of academia, Iglesias serves as the President of the Hip Hop Association of Advancement and Education (HHAAE) and co-chair of the Global Conference on Hip Hop Education and International Hip Hop Studies conference.

Sojung Lim

Dr. Sojung Lim

Dr. Lim joined the department in 2013 after receiving her Ph.D. in Sociology from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. Dr. Lim’s research focuses on the causes, processes, and consequences of a growing inequality across individuals, families, and different social contexts with particular interests in changes in family, labor market, and health disparity. Currently she is engaged in several research projects examining 1) the impact of recent labor market changes (e.g., deteriorating job quality and increasing nonstandard employment) on individuals and families in the U.S. and East Asia; 2) cross-national research on family changes and inequality in Europe, the U.S. and Asia; 3) family and gender inequality in Utah and Intermountain Region; and 4) determinants and mechanisms of health disparity in the U.S. and Asia. Dr. Lim’s research has been published in various journals such as Journal of Marriage and Family, Population Studies, Demographic Research, Social Science Research, and Research in the Sociology of Work. 

David Richter

Dr. David Richter

David F. Richter is Professor of Spanish and Distinguished Professor of Honors Education (2023-2026) at Utah State University. He specializes in 20th–21st century Spanish literature, including the poetry of the Generation of 1927 writers, surrealism, contemporary Spanish women writers, and graphic narrative. He is the author of García Lorca at the Edge of Surrealism: The Aesthetics of Anguish(Bucknell UP, 2014) and co-editor (with Collin McKinney) of Spanish Graphic Narratives: Recent Developments in Sequential Art (Palgrave Macmillan, 2020). His articles have appeared in journals including Letras Hispanas, Bulletin of Spanish Studies, Hispanic Studies Review, Letras Peninsulares, Studies in Twentieth and Twenty-First Century Literature, Paradoxa, Confluencia, Letras Femeninas, Poéticas, Acta Literaria, Neophilologus, Theatralia, and ConNotas. As a research fellow, his project focuses on Spanish comics and graphic novels written and illustrated by women, wherein meta-literary writing, autobiography, and the politics of gender all intersect.

Rebecca Walton

Dr. Rebecca Walton

Rebecca Walton is a professor of Technical Communication and Rhetoric, an associate dean in the College of Humanities and Social Sciences at Utah State University, and the editor of the journal Technical Communication Quarterly. Walton researches how people intervene for justice in their workplaces. Her co-authored scholarship has won multiple national awards, including awards for best book, best theory article, and best empirical research article. One of her favorite parts of her job is mentoring graduate students, and she is passionate about making graduate education more inclusive, learning from the experiences and expertise of her students, and helping students reach their professional goals. She teaches graduate courses including Introduction to Technical Communication (ENGL 6410/7410) and Empirical Research Methods (ENGL 7000). Walton is a “methods nerd” and often serves as the research methods mentor when serving on student committees. Walton worked as a technical writer before coming to academia, and she often draws upon her industry experience in teaching undergraduate courses. Walton teaches Document Design and Graphics (ENGL 4410) and Workplace Research (ENGL 3450) at the undergraduate level.

Teaching Fellows

Gabriele Ciciurkaite

Dr. Gabriele Ciciurkaite

Dr. Gabriele Ciciurkaite is an Associate Professor of Sociology at Utah State University. She earned her Ph.D. in Sociology from the University of Kentucky in 2016. As a Teaching Fellow, Dr. Ciciurkaite will develop a Sociology of Disability Course (SOC 5460/6460), which will be offered to advanced undergraduate and graduate students across diverse disciplines at USU. This course will highlight disability as an axis of inequality, which closely intersects with other markers of identity and status, such as gender, class, race/ethnicity, and sexuality in shaping individual life chances. Students enrolled in this class will first, critically engage with disability as a social issue concerning categorical differences and inequalities as experienced by people with disabilities in the areas of education, employment, health care access, and romantic partnerships; and second, explore the historical and current models of resistance, challenges to social and professional regulation, and the power of activism and advocacy. 

Sunshine Brosi

Dr. Sunshine Brosi

Dr. Sunshine Brosi is an Associate Professor of Wildland Resources at USU’s Eastern Campus in the S.J. & Jessie E. Quinney College of Natural Resources. Sunshine has fifteen years of teaching experience and mentoring several undergraduate students and graduate students. Sunshine is passionate about teaching and has developed and instructed fifteen different courses over the past three years at USU. Sunshine has received several awards for her teaching and student mentoring in addition to the Center for Intersectional Gender Studies and Research Teaching Fellows including the USU Faculty Fellowship in Community Engagement and USU Empowering Teaching Excellence’s Teaching Excellence Scholars. Sunshine leads Community-Engaged Learning courses that address land, water, and air issues in rural Utah with federal and state agency collaborations. She is actively involved in mentoring high school students at the National 4-H Forestry Invitational and at Carbon High School 4-H & FFA Rangeland Career Development Events.  Sunshine is focused on ensuring courses within Natural Resources embrace inclusive pedagogy. Her goal is to present a variety of professional voices to expand worldviews and to engage our broader demographic of student learners.  

Travis Franks

Dr. Travis Franks

Travis Franks received his PhD in contemporary multiethnic literatures from Arizona State University. His book project, Settler Nativism, argues that the current wave of nativism in settler nations like the U.S. and Australia must be understood in relation to the original and ongoing dispossession of Indigenous peoples. His work appears in Settler Colonial Studies, Ariel, MELUS, American Indian Quarterly, Western American Literature, and elsewhere. He has completed McNair and Fulbright fellowships, served as the non-fiction editor of RED INK: An International Journal of Indigenous Literature, Art, & Humanities, curated digital humanities exhibitions for AustLit (the premier online database for the study of Australian literature), and worked with the Massachusett Tribe at Ponkapoag in petitioning Boston University to rename Myles Standish Hall. He teaches courses on Native American and Indigenous literatures and American Studies in the Department of English at Utah State University. 

Tasha Iglesias

Dr. Tasha Iglesias

Dr. Tasha Iglesias currently serves as a Lecturer in the School of Education, for the University of California, Riverside, Utah State University, Salt Lake Community College and Southern New Hampshire University. Dr. Iglesias earned a Doctorate in Educational Leadership (Ed.D) at California State University Long Beach and teaches in the Education and Social Sciences field. Dr. Iglesias’s dissertation was titled “Each One, Teach One”: The Impact of a Hip Hop Learning Community on the Cultural Wealth of Foster Youth in Higher Education. Dr. Iglesias’s research interests include: Culturally Sustaining Pedagogy, Hip Hop Pedagogy and Praxis, and the history of Hip Hop as a culture. Dr. Iglesias develops curriculum, trains professors, consults with organizations and educational institutions and presents her research across the world. Outside of academia, Iglesias serves as the President of the Hip Hop Association of Advancement and Education (HHAAE) and co-chair of the Global Conference on Hip Hop Education and International Hip Hop Studies conference.

Sydney O'Shay

Dr. Sydney O'Shay

Sydney O’Shay is an assistant professor of communication studies (PhD, Wayne State University, 2021). Her research focuses on the construction of stigma communication in healthcare and family contexts. She is currently working on a project investigating stigma communication in interactions between nurses and their patients, and among nurses and other healthcare workers in the emergency department. Sydney is also currently investigating the stigma management and support experiences of family members who have a loved one with an opioid use disorder. Her work has been recognized with the Inclusive Scholarship Award (2022) from the Health Communication Interest Group of the Central States Communication Association and has been published in journals such as Health Communication, the Journal of International Crisis and Risk Communication, Communication Studies, and New Media & Society, among others.

Mario Suarez

Dr. Mario Suarez

Dr. Suarez (he/him/el) was born and raised on the Texas-Mexico border. Prior to doctoral work, he taught high school mathematics in Austin, TX. His work has been featured on nprEd and Univision. Dr. Suarez's is interested in the intersection of race, gender identity, sexuality, and class, and how binary notions of gender permeate K-12 STEM spaces and curricula. His intersectional research agenda broadly asks: How does our understanding of gender and sexuality shape K-12 education (e.g., standards, curriculum, bathrooms, group placements, sports, STEM, teachers and teaching)? He tries to answer this question through a primarily critical quantitative lens using nationally representative data, though he also draws on qualitative methods when large data is not available. His research in education draws from the fields of sociology, demography, gender studies, and policy studies.