Esra Abdoh is an international student from Saudi Arabia. She earned her undergraduate degree in Computer Information Systems from Taibah University (Medina, Saudi Arabia), and an M.S in Information Technology from Southeastern Louisiana University (Louisiana, USA).
She interested to explore theoretical perspectives such as the impact of the work environment, types of information needs, and external influences such as culture and the impact of barriers. She has a year of student teaching experience in the School of Information Science in Taibah University in Saudi Arabia, and has earned a scholarship to fund a PhD. This experience gives her the opportunity to understand the nature of work in universities.
She is very motivated and enthusiastic to follow her career in Library and Information Science Research and to publish academic papers in as many highly-ranked journals as possible. Her experience as a teaching assistant has equipped her with skills to present and explain difficult principles for students and to socialize with them.
Celeste holds bachelor's degrees in psychology and physiology (Michigan State) as well as a master's in library and information science (Long Island University). She has served as a cultural worker in a variety of capacities: director of operations for the Virginia Arts Festival, a multi-city, cultural tourism event; technical director for Urban Bush Women, a community engagement, performance ensemble; production manager for EVIDENCE, a dance company integrating Africana diasporic corporeality with historiography. She has also held a variety of positions in the information field: library assistant, St. John’s Riverside Hospital Cochran School of Nursing (Yonkers, NY); video archives assistant, US Tennis Association; digital assistant, Digital Collections (USC); and library technician, National Audio-Visual Conservation Center. Her research interest focuses around digital curation, research justice, community informatics, and critical information literacy. She would like to explore transdisciplinary approaches to utilizing information and communications technology for asset mapping and preservation in communities displaced by gentrification.
She has lectured in the preservation planning/administration, online information services, and digital information infrastructure areas.
Heather holds a B.A. in political science (summa cum laude) from Oklahoma Baptist University and a M.L.S. from Emporia State University. Before joining the doctoral program, she worked for the Northeast Kansas Library System (Lawrence, Kan.) for many years, in the areas of technology support, cataloging, data management, interlibrary library loan, advocacy, and continuing education, including managing the NExpress Consortia Catalog for three years, an open source (Koha) ILS service used by 50 public and school library locations in the Northeast Kansas region. Her research interests include rural library impact, library advocacy, rural librarian education, open source software (OSS) usage in libraries, and open access to information in the legislative process.
Constance M. Caddell
Constance earned a B.A. in history from Tuskegee University, a MBA in marketing from Colorado Technical University, and a MLS in archives and records management from North Carolina Central University. She has held internships with the Museum of Durham History, Durham County Library Archives (North Carolina Collection), and North Carolina Central University’s Archives. She received continuing education in the archives at the University of North Carolina in Chapel Hill. Her research interests include (1) advocating the value of libraries, archives, and museums to society (2) exploring the interconnection of libraries, archives, and museums and (3) researching the various methods of information behavior amongst the users of libraries, archives, and museums.
Zachary earned a B.A. in political science from Western Washington University and an MLIS from the University of South Carolina. His research studies how information is used in the creative process and focuses on new media, software design, and the web. In addition to his research, Zachary is also passionate about bringing user experience testing to libraries. He is the co-creator of Disaster Box, a technology developed for the 2014 ASIS&T student design competition, and a medalist at the 2016 IASlam.
Laura is in her 17th year as a high school Media Specialist at Dreher High School in Columbia, SC. She previously worked as an English teacher at C.A. Johnson High School in Columbia, and at John Jay High School in Brooklyn, N.Y. She earned a B.A. in English and Communication from Tulane University in New Orleans, an M.Ed. in Secondary English from George Mason University in Virginia, and an M.L.I.S. from USC-Columbia in 1999. Laura earned National Board Certification as a school librarian in 2003, and a renewal in 2013.
Laura also worked 7 years as a school based USC instructor for EDUC 402P, guiding early student teacher internships. She admits to some level of subversion as she encouraged many student teachers to consider school librarianship. She would like to shift focus to teacher-librarian development. Laura’s research interests include the impact of one-to-one initiatives on student recreational reading, the impact of digitizing school libraries on student reading, and how those topics relate to student achievement.
Anmol holds a B.A. in history from the University of Essex (UK), an M.A. in Contemporary History from the University of Bristol (UK), and an MSc in Information Management from the University of Sheffield (UK). He was a graduate trainee for Royal Holloway, University of London, and a senior research associate for the Macquarie Group in London, before joining the doctoral program. His research interests center around the nature of discourse in the media, and the role of the mass media in shaping the parameters of debate on issues such as the ‘war on terror,’ state surveillance, and civil liberties. He has taught in the areas of knowledge management, business information sources, information and society, and history and philosophy of the mass media.
Ramona La Roche
Ramona holds a BFA in photography and creative arts therapy from the School of Visual Arts in New York City. She earned a MEd in Divergent Learning from Columbia College, SC. A published author, she has served as a K-12 arts educator in Georgetown and Charleston County School Districts, health educator, and arts therapist in a variety of settings in New York and the Carolinas. Her research focuses on cultural heritage of the Gullah community in the South Carolina Low Country and its historical connections to Barbados, West Indies. Other descriptors of her applied research interests include related cultural retentions, arts and artisans, genealogy, critical archival work (oral and family history), cemetery preservation, curriculum development, and the technological divide. View CV (pdf).
Karen earned a B.A. in English (Furman), MBA (Furman/Clemson), JD (USC), and MLIS (USC) degrees. She had an extensive career in data processing and technology infrastructure management before joining the doctoral program. Her research interests include valuation of cultural heritage institutions, automated analysis of large data sets, digital libraries, digital information infrastructure, and preservation. She has taught in the digital information infrastructure, knowledge management, preservation planning/administration, digital libraries, information literacy and technology, and public library areas.
Wendy Moore holds a bachelor’s in English from Francis Marion University, a master’s in counseling from Webster University, and an MLIS from the University of South Carolina. She is currently the Cataloging Coordinator in the Technical Services Department at James A. Rogers Library at Francis Marion University. Her research interests focus on the curation, preservation, digitization and the archiving of information and how culture may play a role in information seeking and use. Her interests also lie in the study of genealogy.
George earned his B.S. in business administration (Charleston Southern University) and MSM in management of information systems (North Carolina Agricultural and Technical University) degrees. Most recently he has been working for the USC School of Library and Information Science as a Student Services Program Coordinator. His research interests involve information systems and technology and information seeking behavior, particularly with respect to health information. He has taught the undergraduate research methods and information use and literacy classes. His outside activities include service as a mentor with Big Brothers Big Sisters.
Travis L. Wagner
Travis holds a B.A. In History from Augusta State University (GA) and an MLIS from the University of South Carolina (USC). He also earned a Graduate Certificate in Women’s and Gender Studies at USC and is still a teaching assistant and lecturer within that department. He is a cataloger and processing intern at the University of South Carolina’s Moving Image Research Collections and also works as a consultant to multiple Columbia-based community archives, specifically honing in on preserving and digitizing fragile audio-visual materials. His research interests relate to the role that language-based access plays concerning content creation and distribution within moving image archives, giving specific consideration for how this affects context and interpretation of visual information.
Deborah earned a B.A. in education, MAT, and Ed.S degrees, all from the University of South Carolina. She has been a middle and high school teacher and principal as well as director of Turning Pages Adult Literacy Council (Columbia, SC) before entering the doctoral program. Her research interests lie in the areas of public libraries and marginalized populations, the digital divide, information overload, and adult literacy. Her teaching experience has ranged from sex education, to special education, adult literacy, most recently information policy and ethics.