Photo Credit (top image): Caroline McFarland / Unsplash

2022 Fellows

Soyun Ahn
University of Southern California

Soyun Ahn Headshot

Soyun is a doctoral student at the Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism at the University of Southern California. At this moment she is interested in how emerging technologies are reshaping the way we work and travel. Her dissertation project explores how remote working technologies and the socio-technical infrastructures of travel interact to change the way people construct their social lives based on localities. In the past few years, she studied how communication policy could foster disparate new media environments from a comparative perspective. For instance, she conducted research on disinformation-related policy development in different countries. Prior to joining her doctoral program, she worked for a tech company building a social media platform for four years. She earned her MA in Journalism and Mass Communication from the University of Wisconsin-Madison and holds a BA in Law from Yonsei University in South Korea.

Soyun will be a Fellow at the Brookings Institution.

Sydney Forde
The Pennsylvania State University

Sydney Ford Headshot

Sydney Forde is a Ph.D. student in the Donald P. Bellisario College of Communications at the Pennsylvania State University studying the political economy of media industries. With a focus on journalism from a normative democratic approach, she is specifically interested in media policy and regulation as it pertains to increasing public media support as an alternative to the commercially-reliant news industry in the United States. Having been recently voted in as the first student member of the WPSU Board of Representatives, Forde’s involvement as part of the Government Relations Committee has provided insight into the political and policy-making processes within the American Public Media landscape. As a Canadian, and having completed her master’s degree in Canadian-American Studies at the University at Buffalo and Brock University, Forde often compares American media structures to Canadian equivalents with the aim of finding solutions to global journalism problems in the digital age through cross-national analysis.

Sydney will be a Fellow at Common Cause.

Assil Frayha Headshot

Assil Frayha
University of Pennsylvania  

Assil is a PhD student at the Annenberg School for Communication at the University of Pennsylvania. Her research focuses on activists and journalists in the Arab world who are reimagining journalism in their respective countries. She studies the digital media outlets that emerged from that scene and examines how, despite being largely underfunded and susceptible to state and political intimidations, these outlets are challenging the political and media landscapes they exist in by producing work that is progressive, critical, and oppositional in its discourse. Assil is also a research fellow at the Center for Advanced Research in Global Communication (CARGC) at Annenberg.  Prior to joining the PhD program, Assil worked as a journalist in the US and in Lebanon. She earned her MS in Journalism from Columbia University and holds a BE in Mechanical Engineering from the American University of Beirut.

Assil will be with the Center for the Study of Responsive Law this summer.

Juan Ortiz Freuler
University of Southern California

Juan Ortiz Freuler Headshot

Juan Ortiz Freuler is an Affiliate at the Berkman Klein Center at Harvard, a rower for the non-aligned tech movement, and a PhD student in Communication at the University of Southern California, where he explores the relationship between geopolitics and tech design. Juan has previously held positions as a Senior Policy Fellow at the Web Foundation, where he worked closely with Tim Berners-Lee, and as a researcher and advocate at several nonprofit organizations in Argentina and Mexico. A graduate from Di Tella Law School in Buenos Aires, Juan has completed Masters degrees in both Public Policy and Social Science of the Internet at the University of Oxford.

 Juan will be a Fellow at Open Markets Institute.

Joshua Jordan
Louisiana State University

Joshua Jordan Headshot

Joshua Jordan is a PhD student in Media & Public Affairs in the Manship School of Mass Communication at Louisiana State University (LSU). He studies the intersection of political communication and COVID-19, looking at how intersectional vulnerabilities and racial disparities associated with COVID-19 are portrayed. Hi work draws on several projects, including the Black & Essential Project, led by Dr. David Stamps and which amplifies the lived experiences of Black folk living in Baton Rouge during the COVID-19 pandemic. He works with the Public Policy Research Lab (PPRL) in the Manship School, which sources public opinion survey data to learn more about Louisianans’ experiences with COVID-19 across the state, as well as The Storytellers Lab in the Manship School, and examines the process by which media narratives about Black women’s health outcomes and disparities influence how Black women make decisions about their health. In practice, the intention is to have these findings inform the way media policy organizations address anti-Black racism, media accountability, and diversity in media ownership.

This summer, Joshua will be a fellow at The Democracy Collaborative.

Louisa Lincoln
University of Pennsylvania  

Louisa Lincoln Headshot

Louisa Lincoln is a doctoral student at the Annenberg School for Communication at the University of Pennsylvania. Her research examines sustainable funding models for journalism, with a focus on nonprofit news and public media organizations. She is interested in the intersection of media policy and journalism funding, particularly publicly-funded models for local news. Louisa graduated from the University of Wisconsin-Madison with a Bachelor of Science in Journalism and Political Science and a certificate in Gender and Women’s Studies. During her time at UW-Madison, she was a public engagement and marketing intern at the Wisconsin Center for Investigative Journalism. After graduating, Louisa worked at NPR in Washington, D.C., as a marketing intern in the sponsorship department. Most recently, she worked in the development department at PRX — formerly Public Radio International (PRI) — in Minneapolis as a development specialist, focusing on major giving. She currently serves on the Steering Committee for the Center for Media at Risk at the Annenberg School for Communication and is a 2021-2022 Lipman Family Prize Fellow.

Louisa will be a Fellow at the American Journalism Project.

Rae Moors
University of Michigan

Rae Moors Headshot

Rae Moors is a PhD candidate in the Department of Communication and Media at the University of Michigan. Their scholarship examines the intersection of digital media industries, the platformization of cultural production, and civic participation, focusing on how people create, connect, and make meaning from the digital tools and spaces that technology, game, and entertainment media industries develop and host. They are especially interested in how digital media spaces enable or constrain different forms of communication/behavior and encourage particular understandings of participation/belonging. Their current work critically interrogates the principles and ideals at work in the industrialization of digital gaming communities, and the uses and limitations of policy (both platform and governmental) to meet these principles and ideals. Their scholarship is heavily informed by the theories and methods of cultural studies, media industry studies, platform studies, and feminist/queer studies of care and community.

This summer, Rae will be a Fellow at Ranking Digital Rights.

Adetobi Moses
University of Pennsylvania  

Adetobi Moses Headshot

Adetobi Moses explores how rhetoric and cultural memory intersect with political realities particularly during global crises. She also studies how the media and globalization inform transnational spaces, identities, cultures, and artistic practices. Moses holds a bachelor’s degree from Princeton University where she studied English Literature and minored in African American Studies.

She has always been interested in literature and other forms of artistic production, immigration, and global spaces. As an undergraduate student, she was the recipient of the A. Scott Berg Award, a grant that allowed her to spend a portion of the summer after her sophomore year researching and collaborating with African and Caribbean artistic communities in London.

At Annenberg, studies how the media passes on cultural vestiges and values unto us as consumers, and how this is laid bare during times of political (domestic and global) crises. She is also interested in national narratives and founding myths and the ways they work invisibly to keep nations intact in the face of political threat.

Adetobi will be a Fellow at John Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health’s Center for Communication Programs.

Arijit Paladhi
Indiana University

Arijit Paladhi Headshot

Arijit is currently a doctoral student at The Media School in Indiana University, Bloomington. Prior to this, he completed a Master’s in Public Policy from UT Austin and worked for a year as a public servant for the City of Austin. He has a postgraduate degree in journalism and an undergraduate in engineering with a major in Biotechnology which were both completed in India – and where he was a journalist covering federal policy for a few years.

His research interest lies in exploring the nuances of the notion that a free press is a public/merit good. At a primary level, he is interested in researching the factors that influence the public perception of taxpayer-funded news in the form of an independent local press. On a secondary level, he explores the causal importance of local journalism by assessing the potential extent to which loss of reliable reporting may impact the socio-economic indicators in a region and how misinformation potentially exacerbates that scarcity in today’s age.

Arijit will be a Fellow at Free Press.

Alejandro Alvarado Rojas
University of Southern California

Alejandro Alvarado Rojas Headshot

Alejandro, also known as Alex, is a doctoral student at the USC Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism. He seeks to understand the organizational dynamics implicated in the datafication infrastructures. Anchored in a global perspective, his research interests take a comparative approach across and beyond the local-global dichotomy through the use of qualitative and quantitative methods. Furthermore, he is invested in unpacking the emerging tensions between normative and alternative data futures by focusing on moments of creative resistance on digital platforms.

Beginning his academic career at DeAnza College, he discovered the ubiquity and importance of communication as a tool to navigate the social world both as a student and teacher assistant. Once he transferred to the University of California, Davis, he furthered his studies as a research assistant at the Computational Communication Research Lab: C^2, where he obtained his B.A. in Communication. Additionally, he participated in the Global Studies program at Meiji Gakuin in Japan. In seeking to broaden his horizons, he completed the dual master’s degree program in Global Media and Communications at the London School of Economics (LSE) and the USC Annenberg during a particularly challenging time – the Covid-19 pandemic.

This summer, Alejandro’s fellowship will be at Open Technology Fund.

Erika Solis
The Pennsylvania State University

Erika Solis Headshot

Erika is a doctoral student at Donald P. Bellisario College of Communications at the Pennsylvania State University. Broadly, they are interested in the intersection between technology policies and the regulation of consumers' Internet interactions, with an emphasis on the video game industry, both within major online networks' policies and on the governmental level. In addition, they explore how these media channels may negatively impact children through the collecting and selling of consumer data, and the potential limited or restrictive speech online. They earned their bachelor’s degree in advertising and master’s degree in strategic communication from Rowan University in New Jersey.

Erika will be a Fellow at Ranking Digital Rights this summer.

Past Fellows