Hello. I'm Dr. Daws. Let me introduce myself.

That's me!

The first thing you need to know about me is that I LOVE my job. Sounds corny, but I'm passionate about media studies and even more passionate about helping my students learn about media studies.

Some things to know about me: I grew up on a small farm in the small town of Athens, Alabama. It's not nearly as cool as Athens, Georgia, but we are home to the Alabama Shakes, which is one of my favorite bands.

Brittany Howard is a total BOSS

In fact, north Alabama has historically been home to lots of great music. I went to college at the University of North Alabama, which is a stone's throw from FAME Studios in Muscle Shoals, where everyone from Aretha to Elvis to the Backstreet Boys to the Rolling Stones recorded amazing music. Wish I could say some of that musical talent rubbed off on me. But, instead, I just learned to write, observe others, and communicate. Destiny took over when I stumbled upon communication as a major. I'd found my people and my passion.

Photo credit: una.edu

I loved UNA. I was a really active and involved college student: I was a university hostess, gave campus tours, was part of several service & academic organizations, and a part of Greek life. Senior year, I was named University Woman of the Year and got an award for Outstanding Service to the Campus & Community. In fact, I'm still a big supporter of campus life and encourage all my students to get involved in something while they're here at KSU. It's worth the time.

We have live lion mascots who live on campus. I got to play with these two when they were tiny cubs! Fun & terrifying; they had sharp teeth.

During my last advising appointment of my senior year, Dr. Huddleston convinced me to apply to graduate school. I'm thankful every day that I had such a wonderful advisor who set me on my current career path. I went home for Thanksgiving break, applied to Auburn, got my acceptance into their graduate program in Communication a few months later (much to the chagrin of my family, who are all die-hard Alabama fans), and the rest was history.

it really is a lovely village

While working towards my MA in Communication, I also had the opportunity to teach public speaking classes. It was there that I found my true calling as a college professor. Also, tailgating was fun. War Eagle. I go back for tailgates & games at least once a year.

I still loved studying communication, and felt that I had much more to learn. So from Auburn, I moved north to Lexington, Kentucky, where I became a Wildcat.

photo credit: tailgater's handbook

I fell in love with the Bluegrass and loved my time in Lexington. The University of Kentucky is home to one of the top communication PhD programs in the country, and I was so fortunate to be able to study under some academic rock stars, like Dr. Tom Lindlof, who was my dissertation advisor. And I got to continue my teaching job, which only reinforced how much I loved the classroom.

After Kentucky, I moved to Kennesaw to marry my long-distance fiance' of 4 years, Dave. We are still happily married and now have a 2-year-old son, Luke. He may or may not have been named after Luke Skywalker.

Happy little family

At this point, I've been teaching at the college level for 12 years. So much has changed in media studies since I started on this journey, and I love the challenge of keeping up with new trends and research. My students help me out with that quite a bit. I love it when I learn as much from a class as I hope they learn from me.

In my copious free time (that's a joke; when you have a toddler and a full-time job, free time doesn't really exist) - okay, in my past life before children I was an endurance athlete who competed in all sorts of events. My favorite races are olympic distance triathlons, open water swims, and half marathons. I still squeeze in a sprint tri and 5 or 10K here and there. Maybe I'll get back to hard core events when a small human no longer depends on me for everything.

This is me in a half Ironman back in 2012. I heart triathlons!

I also like to cook (good thing, since I have a family to feed), and read, and kayak on Lake Allatoona.

We got these inflatable kayaks a few years ago, and they are the bomb dot com. They take about 5 minutes to inflate, and fold up into manageable duffle bags for storage. Here they are, ready to go at my usual entry spot at Red Top Mountain State Park.

Students usually tell me that they like my enthusiasm, and, more recently, that I'm "quirky." I take it as a compliment. I'm tough (because I care about you and want you to actually learn things), but I'm also fair. I make an effort to be responsive and friendly. If you ever have questions about anything, hit me up. ldaws@kennesaw.edu.

Let's have a great semester.


Created with images by mrsdkrebs - "2012-240 #6WordMission" • LZA AXLWD - "Alabama Shakes" • tpsdave - "samford hall auburn university alabama"

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