Communications faculty present at diversity conference

Communications associate professor George Padgett and assistant professors Naeemah Clark and Julie Lellis presented at the Diversity in Organizations, Communities and Nations Conference June 11-13 in Vancouver.

(l-r) Communications assistant professor Naeemah Clark, associate professor George Padgett and assistant professor Julie Lellis

The three discussed the disparities in diverse content among three media industries, arguing that content is influenced by issues with hiring and retaining diverse employees. Padgett focused on information media, Clark spoke about entertainment media, and Lellis covered persuasive media.

The panel’s abstract read: “Guided by the premise that media diversity is an issue of ethics (it’s the right thing to do), the proposed panel will engage the audience in a discussion of contemporary diversity related ethical issues in mediated communications. Panelists will discuss the current state of inclusion in a variety of media including arts and entertainment content in television, movies and print; employment trends in print and broadcast newsrooms; and persuasive media messaging in advertising and strategic campaigns. Countering the illusion of a 21st century America where “isms” no longer exist, the panel will discuss media’s failure to meet long established goals of parity, and options for creating a more inclusive media environment characterized by cultural multiplicity, producing content more suited to a growing pluralistic society. While we believe in the value of communitarianism or community discourse as a primary tool in accomplishing social harmony, we recognize the importance of individualism and its contribution to the goals of inclusivity. The panel also will look at the rapid growth of media technology and the influence of social media in advancing the interest of individualism over communalism, and its impact on goals of a more cosmopolitan citizenry.”

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