2020-2021 Faculty of Color Award Recipients


Dr. Yangsun Hong  |  2020-2021 PNMGC All-Around Award

Dr. Yangsun Hong is an assistant professor in the Department of Communication and Journalism and the combined B.A./M.D. degree program. Dr. Hong received her Ph.D. in Mass Communications at the University of Wisconsin-Madison in 2018.

Dr. Hong is a communication scientist who studies health communication and political communication through a critical lens with quantitative methods. The areas of expertise include health communication; Social determinants of health; Communication inequality; Media and social influence; Political behavior; Social media.

Dr. Hong has been teaching courses such as Health Communication; Health and Cultural Diversity at the undergraduate level, Culture, Disparities, and Health Communication; Introduction to Quantitative Methods; Advanced Quantitative Research Methods at the graduate level, and five different independent studies classes for graduate students, such as Intersectionality and Health Inequity; Contemporary Theories in Mass Communication; Social Media & Political Communication, and more.

As a founder and director of the Department of Communication and Journalism’s Digital Media and Communication for Health & Politics Research (DMC) Group, Dr. Hong enjoys collaborating with graduate students.


Dr. Patricia O. Covarrubias  |  2020-2021 Faculty of Color Mentoring Award

Dr. Patricia O. Covarrubias, a native of Mexico, is Professor and the inaugural Director of Graduate Program in the Department of Chicana and Chicano Studies. She spent 13 years in the Department of Communication and Journalism at UNM where she taught a variety of courses linking culture and communication, as well as graduate courses in qualitative research methods with emphasis on the ethnography of communication.

Her research has been dedicated to understanding and describing how local cultures influence peoples’ ways of communicating and vice versa, and on describing how culturally grounded communicative practices reflect and create unique lives for groups of people. Her past research includes Mexicanx ways of speaking and American Indian uses of silence, and her publications include various articles and book chapters, and two books: Culture, Communication, and Cooperation: Interpersonal Relations and Pronominal Address in a Mexican Organization and a co-authored textbook, Among Cultures: The Challenge of Communication.

Past careers include work as an on-air television news reporter for KCRA-TV, the NBC affiliate in Sacramento, California, presenting broadcast reports broached a wide range of topics including politics, medicine, crime, education, and human interest.

Dr. Covarrubias earned B.A. and M.A. degrees from California State University, Sacramento in specializing in French language and literature. She earned a Ph.D. degree in Communication in 1999 from the University of Washington, specializing in cultural/intercultural communication.