SOJC Doctoral student Senyo Ofori-Parku University of Oregon

Doctoral student Senyo Ofori-Parku received an Oregon University System Sasakawa Young Leaders Fellowship Fund (SYLFF) award for international research for the 2013-14 academic year. Students selected for the award have demonstrated strong leadership skills, a broad vision, international outlook, and a narrow focus on an important issue.

Ofori-Parku is the first student from the University of Oregon School of Journalism and Communication to receive the award. The goal of the SYLFF Program is to support advanced graduates students with a“high potential for leadership in international affairs, in public life or private endeavor.”

Ofori-Parku’s dissertation research focuses on risk perceptions and corporate sustainability communications related to offshore oil extraction in Ghana. The $12,000 stipend will allow him to travel to and from Ghana.

“For me this award means a lot because it allows me to explore an issue that is really important: How the oil industry has impacted local folks, the environment, and the local livelihood,” Ofori-Parku said.

SOJC faculty members Kim Sheehan, Professor and Director of the Masters Program in Strategic Communication, and Leslie Steeves, Profesor and Associate Dean are working closely with Ofori-Parku as his research continues.

“Senyo is a tremendously hard worker with a critically important
research agenda,” Steeves said.“Finding ways to measure and analyze cultural variables will be an enormous contribution and set the agenda for many future studies and hopefully corporate practice,”

The fellowship is highly competitive, with just a small handful of recipients selected by graduate deans from PSU, OSU, and the UO. Cross-cultural collaboration is expected and all students are expected to submit a written report once their research comes to a close.

Casey Pechan, PR, ’14