Christine Nyawaga is a fourth year Ph.D. Candidate (ABD) at Wayne State University studying organizational communication. Her research her research focuses on the lived experiences of minoritized workers (especially Black) both online and offline, to better advocate for policies that institutionalize diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI). Her dissertation, partially funded by a $8,223 extramural grant from the Waterhouse Family Institute, will examine how Black workers engage in social identity management on enterprise social media, such as Yammer, Microsoft Teams and Slack. Specifically, she seeks to understand how Black workers’ communicative practices of social identity management are shaped by professional norms at the workplace, which tend to favor dominant white male heteronormative identities, and by the technological affordances of enterprise social media. Over the summer of 2022, Ms. Nyawaga was accepted into a highly competitive internship with Microsoft Research, to do research with its Social Media Collective on user experiences with the enterprise social media tool Yammer.
Allison Lucas is a third-year Ph.D. Candidate, currently pursuing a dual title PhD in Communication and Urban Sustainability at Wayne State University, and is a National Science Foundation funded Trainee with the university’s Transformative Research in Urban Sustainability Training (T-RUST) program. Her research interests are at the intersection of organizational communication, environmental communication and entrepreneurship. She has presented at national and international conferences, published in interdisciplinary journals such as the Journal of Great Lakes Research and Science of the Total Environment, and obtained both internal and external grant funding. She enjoys staying up to date with Detroit’s booming entrepreneurial landscape and the amazing social impact efforts happening within the city.