I am a driven, energetic, and innovative editor, journalist, manager, educator, and researcher with over 10 years of professional and academic experience leading, designing, and executing strategic communication and marketing campaigns, interdisciplinary research projects, higher education course curriculum, and writing assignments individually and as part of a team. I have a decade of experience leading teams that craft and deliver effective and persuasive messaging in print, online, and via broadcast outlets and social media channels in line with organizational goals and metrics. I execute award-winning research projects and usability tests with theoretical, practical, and actionable results for industry and academic partners. I am an expert written and oral communicator that teaches, creates, and manages complex projects and curriculum involving elements of user experience (UX) and customer experience (CX) with practical takeaways for end-users and audiences. I am committed to matters of diversity, equity, inclusion, and social justice.
I hold a Ph.D. in Mass Communication from the Hubbard School of Journalism and Mass Communication (HSJMC) at the University of Minnesota-Twin Cities. I’m an award-winning qualitative researcher that utilizes in-depth interviews, content analysis, netnography, and social listening to produce global research related to journalism, organizations, and digital and social media with an emphasis on solutions journalism. My award-winning dissertation, “The Institutionalization of Solutions Journalism,” is available through the University of Minnesota’s Digital Conservancy at this link.
I serve as a teaching assistant professor at HSJMC, teaching courses for hundreds of undergraduate students including JOUR 4590: Social Media Management; JOUR 4243: Digital Content Development and Production for Brand Communications; JOUR 3751: Digital Media & Culture; and JOUR 1501: Digital Games & Society. I previously taught LEAD671: Strategic Communication for Leaders for MBA and Master’s of Strategic Leadership students at Bethel University in St. Paul, Minnesota.
My research interests involve journalism, strategic communication, digital and social media, and social justice. I have a minor in sociology, hold a Basic Certificate in Equity and Diversity from UMN’s Office For Equity and Diversity, and served as a Graduate Research Assistant for the Minnesota Journalism Center and for The Public Life Project housed within the University of Minnesota’s College of Liberal Arts, where I co-produced a series of vignettes titled “Public Life Starts Here.” This series highlights UMN’s thought leadership on topics of division, equity, and diversity in partnership with Twin Cities Public Television (PBS). I’m also an active member of the eSports Research Network, International Communication Association (ICA), and Association for Education in Journalism and Mass Communication (AEJMC).
I am also a professional freelance journalist, editor, content creator, blogger, and social media strategist formerly employed at Wheaton College as editor of the award-winning Wheaton magazine and as an online editor at CT Women. I also served as Wheaton College’s Journalism Certificate coordinator from 2012 to 2017. I have reported on drug and sex trafficking in Honduras and I write a blog for ChicagoNow on a site called “A Daily Miracle,” featuring faith-based posts on various topics. In 2022, I completed a book project celebrating Anselm House‘s 40th anniversary serving the University of Minnesota-Twin Cities campus community.
I have published over 100 journalistic articles & blog posts on topics including drug & sex trafficking, healthcare, cancer, COVID19, faith, arts, culture, politics, media, human trafficking, marketing, entertainment, and missions work. My claim to fame is facilitating a fan meet-and-greet with Justin Bieber in 2009. For my journalistic portfolio of 100+ published articles, visit my site on Contently.
Stop by and say hi on Twitter @casteinke2.