College of Communication > About > College News > 2021 News > Congratulations to Our 2021 Tenured & Promoted Faculty

Congratulations to Our 2021 Tenured & Promoted Faculty

As we kick off the 2021-22 academic year, we have a lot to celebrate. For one, DePaul is returning to more in-person classes. After a year and a half of virtual campus life, everyone in the college feels thrilled to have students back in the classroom again.

This month, we also recognize the four faculty members in the College of Communication who received tenure or promotions:

Read on to see what they love about teaching at DePaul and what they're excited about this school year.


Professor Kelly Chu
Professor Kelly Chu

Shu-Chuan (Kelly) Chu

Full Professor

What’s your favorite part about teaching at DePaul?

My favorite part about teaching at DePaul is its location. Chicago is our classroom. There are more than 100 public relations and advertising agencies within 10 blocks of our Loop campus. Faculty and programs develop connections that give students opportunities for networking, internships and career development.

Also, our study abroad courses provide exciting opportunities for faculty and students to extend experiential learning beyond Chicago. Courses such as The New York Way, Study Abroad in Asia (Taiwan and Japan), and attending the Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity in France allow students to view public relations and advertising with a diverse, global mindset.

What are you most looking forward to this upcoming school year?

I'm most looking forward to seeing colleagues and students in person this upcoming school year. I'm ready to help students navigate their college life and transitions!


Professor Kelly Kessler
Professor Kelly Kessler

Kelly Kessler

Full Professor

What’s your favorite part about teaching at DePaul?

I've been teaching in DePaul's College of Communication since 2008 and love teaching here. I can give you a couple things I love about teaching at DePaul.

I love talking to students. I love how many of our students are just willing to go on the journey with me in classes like U.S. Television, Sex, and Sexuality, or Diversity and Inclusion in Cinema and Television. I love watching students make discoveries and, honestly, learning from them. The media landscape is always shifting and my students have a lot to teach me. I also love teaching in Chicago. I've taken classes to the Music Box Theatre to see "The Rocky Horror Picture Show." (Although I'm now exhausted by the time a midnight movie starts.) I've taken scads of students to tapings of "The Judge Mathis Show." And I love sending students out to do scavenger hunts and discover the rich television history of our city. Really, I just love where I landed. Our college, our city, my colleagues and our students make DePaul a great place to be.

What are you most looking forward to this upcoming school year?

I'm just looking forward to something that might resemble normalcy. I miss the energy of being face-to-face in a classroom. I've missed the ways that discussions can evolve when people are in the same room and can build off of each other's ideas (rather than discussion being somewhat halted by the awkwardness of everyone's mics going on and off). I've also missed baking for my students. In short, I'm looking forward to being in a room with humans. But I will miss seeing everyone's pets.


Associate Professor Jill Hopke
Associate Professor Jill Hopke

Jill Hopke

Associate Professor with Tenure

What’s your favorite part about teaching at DePaul?

I enjoy the opportunity to work with students who are engaged with the most pressing issues of our day, such as the climate crisis and climate justice. I also love that I've had the chance to develop courses in my areas of expertise, including climate change communication and social media journalism.

What are you most looking forward to this upcoming school year?

I am glad to be back in the classroom for in-person teaching and working with students. There is a lot to appreciate about remote teaching and learning but I have missed the serendipity of face-to-face conversations with students that can flow from being in the same space. I hope that as a college and university, we can continue to build on the best aspects of remote learning while returning to what makes DePaul such a great place to teach and learn, including using the city of Chicago as our classroom.


Associate Professor Kendra Knight
Associate Professor Kendra Knight

Kendra Knight

Associate Professor with Tenure

What’s your favorite part about teaching at DePaul?

DePaul students strive for excellence, but not merely for their own personal gain. Rather, our students pursue lives of significance, asking questions like “How can I be of service? How can I leverage the advantages that I’ve been given, the challenges I’ve overcome, and the skills I’ve gleaned to make this world a better place for those who come after me?” That combination of rigor and reverence is what I love most about DePaul.

What are you most looking forward to this upcoming school year?

In Autumn Quarter I’m teaching my signature Work/Family Communication course. This is an upper-level undergraduate course focused on how individuals negotiate work/family boundaries through interpersonal, organizational and policy communication. Obviously, the events of the past 18-plus months have created tremendous upheaval in this realm, so I’m excited to talk to my students about new policy opportunities, challenges that endure, and potentially shifting meanings in the way we structure and manage our work/family boundaries. And I’m thrilled that the class is meeting in person!