Alumni Career Stories | Department of Anthropology

Alumni Career Stories

We are proud of all of our alumni. While some go on to a PhD program in anthropology or another discipline, the majority of our graduate alumni become practitioners of anthropology. Here are a few examples of the types of jobs and careers our alumni are currently working in.

Solomon Smith- 2022
Though his thesis research focused on environmental politics, anthropology eventually lead Sol to work with immigrants and refugees. In his current role, he has been in charge of creating a high school program for recent immigrant multilingual students at Rapid City Area Schools in South Dakota. His education in anthropology has led him to embrace multilingual approaches to learning, rather than focusing on English-only instruction. He is also involved in volunteer work with refugees and asylum seekers.

Florencia Forno - 2022
Flo got her undergraduate in cultural anthropology at Binghamton University in New York, then moved to Texas and graduated in 2022 with her MS in Applied Anthropology from UNT. She conducted her thesis research exploring the motivations behind participants' decisions to partake in User Experience Research. She currently works at Red Hat, a software company, as a user experience researcher. She uses her anthropological training to conduct studies on digital experiences and inform her research decisions. At Red Hat, Flo focuses on humanizing the user by advocating for their needs and expectations. She enjoys collaborating with teams of various disciplines to gain multiple perspectives, and showcases the value of anthropology in her daily work.

Lauren Scott - 2023
After graduating with my M. A., I started working at the UNT Frisco campus as an adjunct professor for the department. I have worked with non-majors and I love it. I will be a doctoral candidate at Texas State University starting August 2024 in Applied Anthropology. I will be working on special education accommodations in a museum setting. I am an educational anthropologist that has experience as a paraprofessional and as a substitute of all age groups.

Claire Deahl - 2020
Claire works as an Epidemiology Specialist at Tarrant County Public Health. Her responsibilities include managing the on-boarding and training of new hires, documenting the investigation process for the Fatalities Team, and keeping track of equipment inventory. Additionally, Claire was responsible for writing, implementing, and updating COVID-19 protocols and training materials.

Stephanie Holladay
- 2019
Stephanie is currently working in development and fundraising at a media foundation in Washington, DC. While pursuing her master's in Applied Anthropology at UNT, Stephanie studied the intersection of nonprofit agencies and individual philanthropy. She believes in the combined potential of these ideas to produce sustainable and positive social change.

Kitty Sopow - 2019
Kitty is a Social Scientist in the Alaska Environmental Science and Services Integration Center for the National Weather Service in Anchorage, Alaska. Kitty is a cultural anthropologist and uses theories and methods to integrate social, behavioral and/or economic science with the NWS mission and priorities at the regional level. She offers professional advice and assistance to peers and other staff members on the use of social media tools and supplements the community outreach efforts of various regional programs. She is responsible for improving coordination, increasing the quality of social science capabilities at NOAA and improving the effectiveness of NOAA's products, services and risk communication with core partners and the public. She has worked extensively in Alaska prior to and since earning her MS in Applied Anthropology in 2019.

Andrea Semlow - 2019
Andrea currently works as a Cancer Screening and Prevention Manager at Parkland Hospital, where she collaborates with the project coordinator to manage day-to-day operations. Her responsibilities include working with stakeholders to create resources and training materials, developing Cancer Prevention team communications, and monitoring patient populations and success rates over time.

Ashley Thomas - 2019
Ashley works as a Strategic Digital Analyst at CHRISTUS Health, a non-profit catholic healthcare organization. She combines user experience design and knowledge of public health to influence strategic decisions of technological change. Project examples include physician engagement surveys, patient satisfaction, and the creation of a physician directory app. She uses anthropology theory to guide thinking not only about higher-level company vision but also focusing on the individual end user (aka person).

Matt Artz - 2018
Matt Artz is a business and design anthropologist working at the intersection of product management and user experience. He is the founder and principal researcher at Azimuth Labs, and the founder and career coach at Anthro to UX. Matt has also given a TEDx Talk on his UNT consumer DNA research. You can follow him on his anthropology blog, LinkedIn, Twitter, and Spotify.

Gabrielle Lukins - 2018
Gabrielle works as an Outdoor Recreation Planner for the Bureau of Land Management. She serves as the recreation, wilderness, visual resource, and public access specialist for her BLM District. Her duties are to provide recommendations on preserving wilderness/WSA areas, maintaining public access, and mitigating impacts to visual resources and recreation use on proposed NEPA projects through the BLM multiple use mandate. Additionally, she develops and manages recreation area management plans with the goal of expanding outdoor recreation opportunities for the public.

Kim Kiesewetter - 2018
Kim works as a Data Analyst with WiLS, a nonprofit member services organization working with libraries and cultural institutions. Kim's role is research-oriented and involves working on a variety of projects through an anthropological lens ranging from data analysis work in support of WiLS' consulting team to helping brainstorm a gap analysis process for a digital archive of cultural heritage resources.

Isabelle Clérié - 2017
Isabelle lives in her native Haiti where her work has focused on leveraging the power and assets of communities for self-directed progress. She has worked with a variety of organizations including community-based organizations and agricultural co-ops, large multi-laterals, impact investors and more across diverse fields such as SME and social business development, environmental conservation, and human rights. Her most recent work is with the UN's Office of the High Commission for Human Rights to understand the impacts of human rights violations during the Duvalier dictatorship and how they can be addressed today.

Steven Garcia - 2017
Steven is director of the cultural anthropology practice at Team One, a full-service marketing communications agency located in Los Angeles. He condcuts cultural analysis, semiotics, ethnographic and other qualitative research methods to help craft and inspire culturally-relevant communication stategies and advertising.

Priscilla Villa - 2016
Priscilla is the South Texas Organizer at Earthworks. She works with Texas communities and allies to help support their efforts in improving environmental conditions from the oil and gas industry.

Ashley Sauer - 2016
Ashley is a Manager at Southern California Edison where she leads a team of analysts who provide analytical and reporting support to residential energy efficiency programs. Additionally, Ashely has recently accepted a volunteer role at SCE to lead a team of individual contributor employees dedicated to studying the culture of our workplace, and developing/implementing work environment and morale improvement projects. She also volunteers as a Senior Anthropologist with a consulting firm, Indicia Consulting, currently supporting a project exploring how people use technology in their everyday lives and how that information could be used to influence energy consumption behaviors.

Jessica MacKinnon - 2015
Jessica is a Research and Geospatial Analyst at Dallas Area Habitat for Humanity. Among other things, Jessica is responsible for research and mapping to support company operations, providing information to support advocacy efforts, and tracking change in area neighborhoods to support neighborhood revitalization efforts.

Elizabeth Sidler
- 2015
Elizabeth is the Senior Associate for Programming at the civics education nonprofit Generation Citizen. She trains and supports public school educators as they turn their classrooms into civics laboratories that engage students across experiences of race, class, gender, sexuality, religion, and language in the processes of decision making and power in their communities.

Ryan J. Trubits - 2015
Ryan has worked as the Lead Case Manager at Journey's End Refugee Services in Buffalo, NY where he helped over 150 refugees acculturate to living in Western New York and provided culturally competent resettlement services. Ryan is now the Recovery Coordinator at Evergreen Health in Buffalo, NY where he helps individuals living with mental health and substance use concerns develop a person-centered care plan to link with employment, education, or peer support services.

Joshua Liggett - 2014
Joshua is an evaluator (Title: Research Specialist) with Uplift Family Services (formerly EMQ FamiliesFirst). Joshua is currently leading his department into a newly integrated consumer outcomes dashboarding process. He is also working with Uplift Family Services to reignite an in-house IRB to facilitate more qualitative research.

Disha Vora - 2013
Disha is employed by Indicia Consulting as a Senior Anthropologist. Her most recent project is "Cybernetic fieldwork across California", funded by California Energy Commission.

Cathy White - 2013
Cathy has worked with the Sacramento County Office of Education since 2011, where she has had the opportunity to learn more about vulnerable groups of students, mainly foster youth, homeless youth, and incarcerated youth. With the Center for Student Assessment and Program Accountability, Cathy expands her learning while directly applying the skills she learned as a graduate student at UNT. Cathy performs evaluations for education and local governments and creates reports related to a variety of education-related issues.

Nancy Gillis - 2012
Nancy is a research scientist at UNT conducting a needs assessment for the North Texas Food Bank Hunger Center in Dallas. Her research will help the Hunger Center better serve their clients and develop strategies that prevent food insecurity and poverty.

Geoff Garbina - 2012
Geoff is a User Experience Researcher with Tonic3, a digital design agency.

Jocelyn Huelsman - 2011
Jocelyn is a Senior Research Analyst for Precision Dialogue Marketing's Research & Customer Experience team. Jocelyn primarily focuses on usability research utilizing eye tracking, in-depth interviews, and heuristic evaluation. Her other tasks include managing clients, creating quantitative research methods (surveys, card sorting, etc.), and providing design recommendations. At the end of the day, the Research & Customer Experience team's main goal is to make websites, smartphone applications, and other technology easier and more pleasurable to use.

Diana Harrelson Hubbard, PhD
- 2010
Diana currently runs a design group for Blizzard Entertainment and she teaches User Research Methods in the Brandeis University UX Masters program. Prior to Blizzard, she was the Director of Research for Hilton where she ran a multidisciplinary UX research team. Leading up to her role at Hilton, she worked at SAP where she ran the design practice for their Innovation Services organization and worked in edge technologies such as Blockchain, Internet of Things, and Machine Learning. Prior to her time at SAP, she worked for IBM Cloud where she led a few design teams and then started a research team focused on UX in cloud technologies. After she completed her M.S. in Applied Anthropology in 2010, she continued on to her Ph.D. in Interdisciplinary Information Science at UNT, which she completed in 2016.

Angela Ramer - 2010
Angela is currently employed at an international architecture and design firm, HKS, in downtown Dallas where she works as a design anthropologist, conducting research to inform client-specific design solutions. She works with both external and internal clients doing billable, project work for other companies along with organizational development efforts for her own firm.

Megan Bannon - 2007
Megan is head of Cultura, Rapp Collins' new cultural anthropology and research group. She recently ranked 6th in DMNews "30 under 30: The young and the restless in DM " for refining a research methodology called Digital Anthropology, which qualitatively and quantitatively analyzes and organizes online consumer-generated content to inform client strategyin finding meaningful data from the conversations consumers are having online.

Pamela O. Brown - 2005
Pamela is CEO of Corazón Enterprises, LLC, an international spiritually-based transformation and publishing company offering support through nonfiction books and articles; music and guided meditations; and spiritual life coaching.

Stephen Brown - 2004
Stephen works for UT Southwestern Medical Center in Dallas and conducts community-based behavioral research related to HIV/STD's.

Nicole Matheny - 2007
Nicole is working in San Francisco as a Human Resource Consultant and Analyst for Mercer, specializing in employee research.

Sandra Tyson - 2004
Sandra is the Program Manager for the Center for Biosecurity and Public Health Preparedness & PhD student public health at the University of Texas, Austin.