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Jessica Roark

Jessica Roark
Schoonover Center 211

Jessie is a third year doctoral student. She has undergraduate degrees in Theatre and Telecommunications and graduate degrees in Telecommunication and Journalism with an emphasis in media analytics and management. She has received all of her degrees up to this point from Ball State University in Muncie, Indiana. She has also worked at Ball State in the Center for Media Design and spent six years working in research administration for the university where she developed educational materials and opportunities for faculty, staff, and students wishing to conduct sponsored research.

Jessie studies media effects and journalism education. Jessie’s research examines the representation of mental illness and disability in the media. She hopes to find ways to work with industry professionals to counteract the stigma created by inaccurate and sensationalized representations of mental illness in mass media, as well as working to educate journalism students about the ethical reporting of mental illness. She also has an interest in the gendered harassment and discrimination facing female journalists and the steps needed to prepare journalism students to face that reality. These research interests inform her teaching goals and she hopes to continue her career as a journalism educator following the completion of her degree. Jessie teaches writing for advertising and public relations, and has taught multiplatform reporting.

In her free time, Jessie likes to build in Minecraft, work on needlepoint and crochet, take care of her houseplants, and spend time with her pets. You will often see Jessie around the department and on campus accompanied by Finley, a 3-year-old yellow lab/golden retriever mix who is her mobility assistance service dog. He’s “off duty” in her office and loves when people stop by to say hello. They live in a little house in the country with a 13-year-old cat, Calliope, who generally runs the household.