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Faculty Directory

Communication and Emerging Media

Rachel Whitten, PhD


Dr. Rachel Whitten is originally from a small town just outside of Houston, Texas. She started her teaching career during her MA program at Texas A&M University. Dr. Whitten then taught at Lonestar College and Hanover College before joining the Department of Communication at the University of South Carolina Aiken. Dr. Whitten’s field of expertise is crisis communication and her dissertation explored the ways brand loyalty impacts the management of crises.


Ph.D., Communication, Texas A&M University

M.A., Communication, Texas A&M University

B.A., Communication, Texas A&M University

Courses Taught

COMM A190 - Introduction to Communication

COMM A201 - Interpersonal Communication 

COMM A241 - Public Speaking

COMM A328, Introduction to Public Relations

COMM A329 - Crisis Communication

COMM A385 - Group Communication

Research Interests

Crisis Communication, Issues Management, Organizational Communication, Public Relations, Strategic Communication

Brand Communities, Public Memory

Selected Research & Professional Activity

Whitten, R.L. and Coombs, W.T. (2017). Crisis Communication. In The Handbook of Financial Communication and Investor Relations. A.V. Laskin (Ed.). Hoboken, New Jersey: Wiley.

Whitten, R. A call for revival: a crisis management approach for brand communities. Submitted to: The Handbook of Crisis Communication.

Whitten, R. (2020). “Obstruction on Steroids”: Managing the Issue of Merrick Garland as Supreme Court Justice Nominee. Presented at Southern States Communication Conference in Frisco, Texas.

Rigda, R. & Whitten, R. (2020, April). Collective Memory and Rhetorical Forgetting: The Removal of the JoePa Statue from Beaver Stadium. Presented at Southern States Communication Conference in Frisco, Texas.

Odwalla: Understanding the (e. coli) outbreak. To be submitted to: Journal of Communication Management. (to be submitted for publication)