Communication Ph.D.’s on the Job Market

MariaMaria Butauski is a doctoral candidate at the University of Missouri (B.A., Public Relations & Organizational Communication, Xavier University, 2013; M.A., Interpersonal Communication, Kent State University, 2016). Her research examines (1) communication privacy management of vulnerable, often identity-related, information, (2) communicated sense-making surrounding LGBTQ+ identities, and (3) communication in and surrounding diverse family forms. Recently, Maria was awarded the Steven A. and Susan J. Beebe Doctoral Student Scholarship Endowment Summer Research Fellowship to study how intergroup dynamics play a role in adult children’s management of the parent-child privacy boundary and important relationship and identity outcomes. Her research primarily draws from communication privacy management theory and has been published in journals such as the Journal of Family Communication, Communication Studies, and the Western Journal of Communication. In her dissertation, Maria examines the extent to which LGBTQ adult children perceive open communication with their parents as risky relates to mental health outcomes. Additionally, Maria examines how parents’ accommodative communication may reduce these risk-assessments, and thus be related to more positive mental health outcomes.

Aside from her research, Maria is passionate about social justice, diversity, and inclusion. She was competitively selected and funded by the University of Missouri’s Office of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion for multiple trainings on diversity and inclusion in university settings, including a certification in Social Justice Mediation ( She also volunteers as a board member and social media coordinator for The Center Project (, which is Mid-Missouri’s only nonprofit organization serving the LGBTQ community. With her passion for social justice, diversity, and inclusion, Maria works diligently to help her students think critically about issues of diversity and inclusion as it relates to communication in public speaking and interpersonal contexts. She has been the instructor of record for public speaking and relational communication classes, but her dedication to teaching and mentorship extends beyond the classroom. She volunteers as a Safe Space Trainer for the campus LGBTQ Resource Center by conducting trainings on LGBTQ allyship for student, staff, and faculty groups across campus. Maria has also mentored undergraduate students in a variety of contexts. She has served as a research mentor for undergraduate communication students interested in gaining research experience, a senior capstone project mentor for undergraduate hospitality students, a teaching mentor for new graduate teaching assistants, and a mentor for the Proud Tiger Mentorship program through the campus LGBTQ Resource Center. Maria plans to defend her dissertation in the spring of 2019 and is seeking a tenure track position to begin in the fall of 2019.

Maria Butauski
Advisor: Dr. Haley Horstman
Butauski Vita

PDF Documents: