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Meet our Faculty

We are excited to offer this opportunity for students to broaden their understanding of health communication. The courses offered as part of this certificate program will provide understanding of health communication within interpersonal, organizational, and mass media contexts. The knowledge and skills learned through the program should help students prepare for jobs in a growing market within the St. Louis area and beyond.
— Amber Reinhart and Stephanie Van Stee, Program Co-Directors

Amber Reinhart, Program Co-Director
Associate Chair and Graduate Program Director
Office: 584 Lucas Hall
Phone: 314-516-5489
Email: reinhartam@umsl.edu 

Amber Reinhart teaches courses for the certificate program related to interpersonal and organizational health communication. Her research interests focus on message design and behavior change, mainly in the area of health communication. She is interested in looking at the best ways to craft persuasive messages and other intervention components that will facilitate the greatest behavioral change (e.g., help people to find accurate health information online, sign organ and tissue donor cards, stop risky health behaviors) in selected populations. She is also the co-advisor for the internship program.  


Stephanie Van Stee, Program Co-Director
Office: 571 Lucas Hall
Phone: 314-516-5234
Email: vanstees@umsl.edu 

Stephanie Van Stee teaches courses for the certificate program related to mass media and health communication. Her research interests focus on persuasive health message design, including tailored health messages, health campaigns and interventions, and community-based health research. She has engaged in many collaborative research projects and is also a co-advisor for the internship program. Her teaching experience and interests include interpersonal communication, research methods, persuasion, and health communication.


Alice E. Hall, Associate Professor
Department Chair
Office: 570 Lucas Hall
Phone: 314-516-6662
Email: halla@umsl.edu

Alice Hall serves as chair of the Department of Communication and Media. Her research focuses on the selection and interpretation of entertainment media. She is interested in how audiences make sense of mediated stories and in how these interpretive processes affect the stories’ influence on the audiences’ views of the world. She has studied perceptions of reality programs, how audiences evaluate the realism of fictional media, and the factors that contribute to audiences’ involvement in stories. Dr. Hall’s teaching focuses on mass communication theory.


Lara Zwarun, Associate Professor
Office: 570 Lucas Hall
Phone: 314-516-6725

Lara Zwarun's research expertise pertains to risky or sensitive media messages, including alcohol and tobacco advertising, television violence, and food marketing directed at children. Her research analyzes the content of these messages, analyzes their individual and social effects, and considers the regulatory and environmental contexts within which they appear. She teaches undergraduate and graduate classes including Research Methods, Introduction to Mass Communication, and Dangerous Messages in the Media