Publication Date

Summer 2017

Advisor(s) - Committee Chair

Holly Payne, Ph.D. (Director), Laura Brown, Ph.D., Angela Jerome, Ph.D.

Degree Program

Department of Communication

Degree Type

Master of Arts


While diversity is widely discussed throughout management literature, the impact of diversity management on diverse organizational members remains exceedingly sparse. Furthermore, the present case study uses a communication centered approach to address how diverse faculty member’s organizational experiences with diversity align with an academic institution’s publicly stated values of diversity. Through a critical interpretive lens, 15 semi-structured, in-depth interviews of diverse faculty members were conducted at a medium sized, Southern university (“Southern U”). Findings suggested that contradictions were heavily embedded into Southern U’s diversity communication resulting in a host of paradoxical tensions for diverse faculty members. This study explored the communicative constitution of organizations and how organizations constrain and enable diversity through communicative enactment.


Communication | Gender, Race, Sexuality, and Ethnicity in Communication | Organizational Communication