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Katie Koselak, 2012

The Communication Arts and Sciences (CAS) faculty members are pleased to spotlight the academic accomplishments of senior CAS major and honors student, Katie Kosalek. Motivated by Penn State’s quality reputation and the opportunity to stay close to home, Katie began her academic studies at Penn State York in the fall of 2008 as an undeclared major. She soon learned about the four-year CAS program and, because of her fascination with how people interact, declared her major in CAS (and minor in business) her sophomore year. She is no stranger to Penn State, however. Her dad, Jim, attended Penn State Wilkes-Barre, so she was thrilled to also be a Nittany Lion. While attending college, Katie has worked part-time to help with college expenses. Through her sophomore year, she worked as a sales clerk at Bon Ton. Since her junior year, she has worked for PoolPak in its operations unit. She does staff support duties including accounting and service dispatch.

In addition to maintaining a high grade-point average throughout her years at Penn State (she has been an honors student since she began her studies), Katie has been active in campus clubs, organizations, and various campus functions. She was a Lion Ambassador from fall 2008 through spring 2011. She served on a CAS faculty search committee as its student representative. She now serves on the Penn State York Campus Programming Board, planning events for fellow students.  

On the academic side, her hard work in the classroom has also paid additional benefits (both personally and professionally). She served as a research assistant for Dr. Joe Downing on a research project investigating SMS-text messaging systems during times of crisis management. Together with psychology associate professor, Dr. Mark Casteel, she presented their combined work entitled, “Collecting Survey Data Using Mobile SMS Technology: Promises and Technological Challenges,” at the Pennsylvania Communication Association annual conference held in the fall 2010.  As a result of her honors studies in CAS 352, organizational communication, taught last spring by Dr. Deborah Eicher-Catt, she co-authored and co-presented (with CAS major, Caitlin Markline) a research paper entitled, “Entrepreneurship Unveiled,” at this year’s Pennsylvania Communication Association annual conference held in Westminster, Pennsylvania. This year, Katie has the fortunate experience of working with business instructor, Ed Jenkins, as academic intern for the IRS Vita Program. This program provides tax services to low income individuals.  Katie is busy working on writing, editing, and producing a professional video that helps to promote this valuable program.  It is no surprise that Katie’s academic pursuits have led to numerous awards.  She is the recipient of two Honors Program Awards, including the prestigious Keystone Honors Society award for earning the highest grade-point average in the CAS program.  In spring 2011, Katie was also inducted into the National Communication Associations Honors Society, Lambda Pi Eta.

Katie says that her time at Penn State York has been extremely rewarding. She loves the “tight knit” community provided by our campus and is thankful for the support and academic opportunities that all of the CAS faculty have given her. She especially wants to thank Dr. Joe Downing for the opportunity to be his research assistant and Dr. Deborah Eicher-Catt, for her encouragement to write and submit her research to an academic conference. Her favorite class was CAS/WMNST 455, gender roles, taught by Dr. Deborah Eicher-Catt. 

Katie is looking forward to either entering graduate school to study communication or the Peace Corps. Whatever choice she makes, she knows she could not have come this far without the loving guidance of her family, especially her parents Jim and Elaine Kosalek. They have served as her “twin pillars” of support.  We wish Katie the best!