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Communication studies graduate takes ASU excellence overseas and back again

August 07, 2008

When Micah Pappas met a group of visiting students from England’s Manchester University as part of Dr. Jeff Kassing’s intercultural communication class, he couldn’t have known the international adventure that awaited him and how his experiences would ultimately benefit his alma mater.

The first to earn a university degree in his family, Pappas was the 2005 CHS outstanding graduate as well as a graduate of Barrett Honors College. His interaction with the visiting Manchester students sparked a desire to travel while continuing his education. Pappas earned a fellowship and completed a master’s degree in communication, media and cultural studies from Roskilde Universitetscenter (Denmark) and the Institute of Education, University of London. He then moved to Madrid, where he learned Spanish at an intensive language academy.

Now, as coordinator for ASU’s North American Center for Transborder Studies, which advances a greater understanding of border and trilateral issues, Pappas’ work of coordinating programs, organizing conferences and events, and marketing the center has been positively influenced by his undergraduate work in the College of Human Services which combined a communication studies major with a special event minor.

“CHS gives you the opportunity to spend a great deal of quality time with quality individuals,” says Pappas, who especially credits Kassing, Communication Studies Chair, and Wendy Hultsman, professor and Recreation and Tourism Management Chair. “I was fortunate to have a number of people pushing me to excel.”