PhD in Communication

Christian Seiter, 2021

Christian Seiter

Describe your dissertation or thesis (if you completed one):

My dissertation is a three-phase, mixed-methods examination of how different types of humor can be used to motivate end-of-life communication between families.

How did your academic experiences in the College of Humanities and Social Sciences impact you? 

I was able to develop a program of research broadly examining advance care planning and meaningful end-of-life experiences. My wonderful friends and mentors were so supportive of my work, and that support encouraged me to pull the trigger and submit my papers to quality journals.

What accomplishment(s) during your time at Mason are you most proud of?

My proudest moment was when my first publication, a solo-authored content analysis of advance care planning patient education materials, was accepted to Health Communication.

Are there faculty or staff members who made a difference during your Mason career? Please give an example of this impact if possible. 

I am incredibly grateful for Xiaoquan Zhao, Gary Kreps, Kathy Rowan, Melissa Broeckelman-Post, Chris Clarke, Kevin Wright, Sara Mathis, Brittany Sanders, and Maria Carabelli for all they did for me during my time here! I'd like to give a particular shout-out to Brittany, who kept me from making several administrative mistakes and gave me pep-talks during low points.

What advice would you give to an incoming cohort of graduate students?

Take advantage of every academic opportunity that will further your career, and do not forget to make time for joyous experiences with your friends and colleagues.

What are your current career plans following graduation? What are your long-term career goals?

In the fall, I will be an assistant professor of health communication at California State University, Fullerton!