Contact Simran.


Simran is currently an associate at the Melbourne Sustainable Society Institute (MSSI) at the University of Melbourne in Australia, where she is conducting research on the loss of agricultural biodiversity in our food system. Simran is also the University’s 2013 Queen’s College Sugden Fellow. She recently served as the Kelly Distinguished Scholar-in-Residence at St. Catherine University, the largest women’s college in the United States, and was an associate professor of journalism at the University of Kansas from 2007 to 2012.

Teaching Statement

Courses Taught (University of Kansas)

Diversity in Media (Fall 2010, Fall 2011)
Service-learning course that analyzes how mass media shapes perspectives in a multicultural society, challenges and reinforces stereotypes, and influences public discourse.

The culmination of the course was the Telling Stories of Diversity in the Digital Age summit, co-sponsored with Online News Association and featuring 16 speakers from three continents addressing topics including social media in communities of color, censorship, the use of Twitter in coverage of the Mexican drug wars, and applications of digital platforms in differently-abled communities.

Watch the most recent summit here.

Another project of this course was to bring human rights activist Darryl Hunt to KU for a showing of his film and a Q&A session. This event was titled The Arc of Justice: The Incarceration (and Exoneration) of Darryl Hunt.

Directed Study in Journalism (Summer 2010)
Oversight of independent coursework in advocacy journalism with former student from Green Reporting, Green Building, Green Justice course. Course focused on creation of digital communications plan for Lawrence Community Shelter, the only homeless shelter in Lawrence. Study involves appropriate application of social media to alert community stakeholders about Shelter activity and relevant policy changes.

Green Reporting, Green Jobs, Green Justice (Spring 2010, Spring 2011)
Service-learning course cross-listed with School of Architecture and Environmental Studies that reports on the environmental justice and green collar jobs movements from the inside out, garnering a unique perspective on how environmental issues impact various constituents. Classes meet in Lawrence, KS, and students also work in Oakland, CA. The course includes the application of social networks Facebook and Twitter. 

Media and the Environment (Spring 2008, Spring 2009, Spring 2010)
Interactive class cross-listed with Environmental Studies focusing on the ways in which environmental issues are addressed in media, using food and agriculture as the lenses through which students can become more effective environmental communicators. The course is a designated service-learning course with the Douglas Policy Food Council. It uses blogging as its primary form of reportage and features cross-listed material on the Lawrence Journal-World Web site. 

Independent Study in Environmental Studies (Fall 2009)
Oversight of independent course work in Environmental Studies department with former student from Media and the Environment course. Student blog (“Green Girl Meets All-American Boy”) focused on the psychology and action required to “go green.”

Communicating Social and Environmental Initiatives (Fall 2008, Summer 2009, Spring 2011)
Concentrated graduate course that teaches environmental and sustainable business communications for working professionals. The course is a designated service-learning course that emphasizes the marketing and public relations applications of social networks and digital media.

Courses Co-Taught (University of Kansas)

Online Writing, Design and Production (Advanced Media) (Fall 2007)
Required course on the gathering, writing, design and multimedia presentation of news and information for the school’s online media. Presented lectures on social networking, microblogging, virtual worlds, podcasting, the digital divide, net neutrality and media consolidation. Held virtual class in Second Life with Reuters reporter Eric Krangel.

Current Issues in Journalism: YouTubers, Bloggers and Comedy News and the End of Mass Media as We Knew it (Fall 2007)
Class focusing on the current uses, effectiveness and demographics of new media. Presented lectures on blogging, Twitter, Facebook, comedy news and digital marketing. Arranged virtual Skype lectures with Engadget founder Peter Rojas, Columbia School of Journalism Associate Dean Sree Srinivasan and The Daily Show senior producer Rob Fox.