hss-amanda-kennedy
Departments
Education
  • Ph.D., University of Maryland-College Park
  • M.A., University of Houston
  • B.A., Southwestern University
Research Interests
  • Public Relations
  • Critical Feminist Theory and Methodologies
  • Digital and Online Communication
  • Ethics
  • Affect Theory
  • Health and Risk Communication
  • Organizational Communication
  • Qualitative and Emergent Epistemologies and Methods
Biography

Amanda Kennedy is an Assistant Professor of Communication Studies as St. Mary’s University. Kennedy’s research is focused in feminist and critical theory in public relations, applied communication ethics, and critical and qualitative methods. Her published and forthcoming research appears in the Atlantic Journal of Communication, Journal of Media Ethics, and book chapters covering topics in public relations, engagement, and feminist media studies. Her recently completed dissertation used a critical feminist and postmodern approach to exploring affect and feelings in the childhood vaccine debate among mothers of young children.

Kennedy enjoys integrating her research and teaching and has taught classes in public relations, media writing, communication theory, and public speaking. She also enjoys being actively involved in service to her department, community, and discipline, including reviewing for and serving in leadership roles in PR and feminist divisions of the Association of Educators in Journalism and Mass Communication (AEJMC), International Communication Association (ICA), and National Communication Association (NCA). She now looks forward to pursuing her enthusiasm for service, teaching, and research in her new position at St. Mary’s University.

Kennedy earned her Ph.D. in communication from University of Maryland in 2016, M.A. from University of Houston, and B.A. from Southwestern University. She is originally from Houston and has a toddler, husband, and two dogs.

Publications

Kennedy, A. K., & Sommerfeldt, E. J. (2015). A postmodern turn for social media research: Theory and research directions for public relations scholarship. Atlantic Journal of Communication, 23, 31-45. doi: 10.1080/15456870.2015.972406

Kennedy, A. K. (Forthcoming). Landscapes of care: Feminist approaches in global public relations. Journal of Media Ethics.

Kennedy, A. K. (Forthcoming). An affective turn in feminist media research. In D. Harp, J. Loke, & I. Bachmann (Eds.), Feminist media research in the 21st century. (In negotiation with publisher)

Kennedy, A. K., & Sommerfeldt, E. J. (Forthcoming). Habits of the heart and mind: Engagement in civil society and international development. In K. Johnston & M. Taylor (Eds.), Handbook of communication engagement. (In negotiation with publisher)

Kennedy, A. K., Xu, S., & Sommerfeldt, E. J. (Forthcoming). Public relations and development: Ethical perspectives on communication for societal effectiveness. In B. R. Brunner (Ed.), The moral compass of public relations. Routledge research in public relations.

Conferences and Presentations

Papers Presented
Fraustino, J. D., & Kennedy, A. K. (2016, November). Civic callings for resilience: Adapting
discourse of renewal theory. Paper accepted for presentation at the annual conference of
the National Communication Association. Philadelphia, PA. Public Relations Division.

Kennedy, A. K. (2015, November). Boundary work: Mapping the “critical” in public relations
theory. Paper presented at the annual conference of the National Communication
Association. Las Vegas, Nevada. Public Relations Division. Top Student Paper (Rank TBD).

Kennedy, A. K. (2015, August). Is breast best? Feminist ethics in breastfeeding promotion as
public relations. Paper presented at the annual conference of the Association for Education
in Journalism and Mass Communication. Commission on the Status of Women. San
Francisco, California. Top Student Paper (1st place).

Fraustino, J. D., & Kennedy, A. K. (2015, August). Care in crisis: Proposing the applied model of
care considerations for public relations. Paper presented at the annual conference of the
Association for Education in Journalism and Mass Communication. San Francisco, CA.
Public Relations Division.

Kennedy, A. (2015, May). An affective turn for public relations. Paper presented at the annual
conference of the International Communication Association. San Juan, Puerto Rico. Public
Relations Division. Top Student Paper (Top 5).

Kennedy, A. K., & Sommerfeldt, E. J. (2014, November). A postmodern turn for social media
research: Theory and research directions for public relations scholarship. Paper presented at
the annual conference of the National Communication Association. Chicago, IL. Public
Relations Division.

Kennedy, A. (2014, August). “Culturing” generic/specific theory: Relocating culture in
generic/specific public relations. Poster presented at the annual conference of the
Association for Education in Journalism and Mass Communication. Montreal, Canada.
Public Relations Division.

Kennedy, A. (2014, May). Landscapes of care: A feminist ethic for global public relations. Poster
presented at the annual conference of the International Communication Association.
Seattle, WA. Public Relations Division.

Kennedy, A. (2014, March). Picture this: Creativity and passion in public relations. Paper presented
at the annual conference of the International Public Relations Research Conference. Miami,
FL.

Kennedy, A. (2013, November). Unlikely sisters: A postmodern feminist model of public relations.
Paper presented at the annual conference of the National Communication Association.
Washington, D.C. Public Relations Division. Top Student Paper (2nd Place).

Toth, E. L., & Kennedy, A. (2013, November). CONNECTing crises and strategic management
perspectives: Contributions of excellence theory, relationship cultivation theory,
contingency theory, and complexity and chaos theories to crisis communication. Paper
presented at the annual conference of the National Communication Association.
Washington, D.C. Public Relations Division.

Kennedy, A. (2013, October). Picturing feminism and postmodernism in public relations
workplaces. Paper presented at the annual graduate student symposium, “Interventions:
Women’s Studies on the Edge,” University of Maryland, College Park.

Panels Presented
Place, K. R. (Submitter/Moderator), Ciszek, E., Kennedy, A., Philips, L., Rakow, L., &
Trager-Bohley, K. (Participants). (2014, August). Exploring Cutting-Edge Methods for
Researching Gender & Sexuality in Mass Communication. Panel presented at the
annual conference of the Association for Education in Journalism and Mass
Communication. Montreal, Canada. Commission on the Status of Women and GLBT
Interest Group.

Service

University
Secretary/Treasurer, COMMGrads, University of Maryland, Department of Communication’s
graduate student government (May 2014–December 2014)

Committee Member, Faculty Appreciation Committee, University of Maryland, Department of
Communication, COMMGrads (Fall 2013–Spring 2014)

Committee Member, Colloquium Committee, University of Maryland, Department of
Communication (Fall 2013–Spring 2014)

Committee Member, NCA Maryland Reception Planning Committee, University of Maryland,
Department of Communication (2013, 2014)

Discipline
Chair, Social Event Committee, AEJMC Public Relations Division (August 2016-August 2017)

Vice-chair, Social Event Committee, AEJMC Public Relations Division (August 2015–August 2016)

Committee Member, Professional Liaison/Social Committee, AEJMC Public Relations Division
(August 2014–August 2015)

Committee Member, Graduate Student Liaison Committee, AEJMC Public Relations Division
(August 2014–August 2015)

Event Planning and Management Volunteer, Annual Reception, AEJMC Public Relations Division
(August 2014)

Paper Reviewer, AEJMC, Commission on the Status of Women (2016)

Paper Reviewer, NCA, Public Relations Division (2014, 2015, 2016); Feminist and Women’s Studies Division (2014, 2015 2016)

Paper Reviewer, ICA, Public Relations Division (2015, 2016); Feminist Scholarship Division (2015, 2016)

Awards and Honors

Top Student Paper Award (2nd place), NCA Public Relations Division, Plank Student Research Paper Competition (2015)

Top Student Paper Award (1st place), AEJMC Commission on the Status of Women (2015)

Top Student Paper Award (Top 5), ICA Public Relations Division (2015)

Top Student Paper Award (2nd place), NCA Public Relations Division, Plank Student Research Paper Competition (2013)

Professional Memberships

Association for Education in Journalism and Mass Communication (AEJMC) (2013–present)

National Communication Association (NCA) (2013–present)

International Communication Association (ICA) (2014–present)