Dr. Jessica Ghilani, Associate Professor of Communication (Ph.D., University of Pittsburgh) teaches and researches media studies, advertising and consumer history, digital culture, research methods, speech communication, and corporate and professional communication. Her book manuscript, "Selling Soldiering: Advertising for US Army Volunteers since 1914,” under contract with the University of Iowa Press, examines the origins of volunteer military recruitment strategies, tracing them deep into the history of 20th century conscription, before the draft’s overturn in 1973.
In 2016 Dr. Ghilani was awarded a prestigious Summer Stipend grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities. Prior to this, she received a competitive fellowship from the American Association of University Women to dedicate a year toward writing. As a graduate student she held an appointment as a predoctoral research fellow with the Smithsonian Institution in the National Museum of American History where she conducted extensive archival research. She has received additional grant funding from the University of Pittsburgh’s Central Research Development Fund, Duke University's John W. Hartman Center for Sales, Advertising, and Marketing History, and the University of Pittsburgh’s Gender, Sexuality, and Women’s Studies program. Her work has been published in the Journal of Communication Inquiry, Minerva Journal of Women and War, and The Encyclopedia of American Women at War, and American Journalism: A Journal of Media History. Her American Journalism article was featured on their "Teaching Our Journal" website, where she developed a special curriculum around it. You can access the curriculum here.
Dr. Ghilani is an affiliated faculty member in Pitt Greensburg’s Center for Applied Research where she provides social media analysis to regional clients. She cofounded and served as advisory board member of Covey: a social media company that participated in the nationally-ranked startup accelerator, Alphalab. Covey launched a mobile app that enables parents and caregivers to find nearby activities and community.
Dr. Ghilani’s research inspires her teaching and she designs communication theory and practice courses that implement multiple media tools to examine the changing landscapes and environments for communication/interactivity in a digital era.