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Dr. Susan McFarlane-Alvarez

Professor - Corporate Communication

Office: Music Education 217
Visual and Performing Arts
College of Arts & Sciences


Susan McFarlane-Alvarez (Ph.D. Georgia State University, 2006) is Professor of Corporate Communication in Clayton State University’s Department of Visual and Performing Arts, where she also serves as program coordinator for Communication and Media Studies. Her research focuses on advertising, identity and the social impact of the persuasion industries. Alongside her career in academia, McFarlane-Alvarez has over 25 years of international experience in advertising and public relations, and has worked as a Creative Director to a regionally-focused, global agency, and as a consultant in public relations and advertising, to corporations across a diverse array of industries, from finance to manufacturing, training to tourism, and governmental to non-governmental interests. Bringing this experience to the classroom, McFarlane-Alvarez teaches students of advertising and public relations through engaged learning that builds collaborative experiences between community partners and students who are rising professionals.


Ph D, Communication, Georgia State University, 2006

MA, Communication, Georgia State University, 1993

BA, Communication, State University of New York , 1991

Awards and Honors

Creative Excellence - Below the Line - Financial, Advertising Agencies Association of Trinidad and Tobago, Award, 1999

Creative Excellence - Best Radio - Services, Advertising Agencies Association of Trinidad and Tobago, Award, 2000

Creative Excellence - Best Radio - Health, Advertising Agencies Association of Trinidad and Tobago, Award, 2001

Creative Excellence - Best Radio, Advertising Agencies Association of Trinidad and Tobago, Award, 2004

Creative Excellent - Best Campaign, Advertising Agencies Association of Trinidad and Tobago, Award, 2002

Intellectual Contributions

Susan L. McFarlane-Alvarez, “Go back where you come from!” Aesthetic identity, “This Land” and “Old Town Road”, Flow Online Journal of Television and Media Studies – September 16 2019

Susan L. McFarlane-Alvarez, Bim and Joebell: Filmic Representations of Colonial and Postcolonial Caribbean Identity, Ian Randle Publishers – September 25 2015

Susan L. McFarlane-Alvarez, Shandra McDonald,  , Building Bridges with Big Brothers, Big Sisters: Service learning links between professional and civic engagement education at a Predominantly Black Institution, Journal of Community Engagement and Scholarship – November 2020

Susan L. McFarlane-Alvarez, Caribbean Creativity in the North American Classroom: Deploying Difference and Ingenuity for Community-Engaged Pedagogy, Caribbean Educational Research Journal - University of the West Indies – April 2020

Susan L. McFarlane-Alvarez, Human Billboarding:Peopled Publicity and a New Space of “Agency” in Advertising, Advertising and Society Review – July 2014


Susan L. McFarlane-Alvarez, Human Billboarding: Corporate (Post-)Colonialism and the Evolution of Branded Neo-Tribes, CSA Annual Conference, Cultural Studies Association –  April 2006

Susan L. McFarlane-Alvarez, “Transforming Relations Using Student Thinkers” for Big Brothers, Big Sisters: Using service learning in public relations to build bridges between professional and civic engagement education at a Predominantly Black Institution, Building Bridges: 2018 Annual Convention, Eastern Communication Association –  April 29 2018

Susan L. McFarlane-Alvarez, RuAnn Keith, Freda Wynn, Conceptual Resonance: A Three-Phase Study Applying Chion's Theoretical Perspectives of Acousmetre and Sound en Creux, Visual Communication Conference, Visual Communication Association –  June 2003

Susan L. McFarlane-Alvarez, Imagining the Nation through Neighbor Crisis: Venezuelan 'Revolution' Televised in Trinidad and Tobago, Trans-National Literature and Film: Cultural Production and the Claims of History. , Cultural Production and the Claims of History –  January 2004

Susan L. McFarlane-Alvarez,  , Social Activism and Resistance in Corporate TV Commercials: Uncovering rhetorical periods and catalytic events during the 2016/2017 Presidential Primary, Election and Inauguration, 32nd Annual Disciplinary Conference in the Humanities: Dichotomies / Schisms / Divisions, University of West Georgia –  October 27 2017

Service to the University & University System of Georgia

University, College of Arts and Sciences Scholar of the Year Award, Committee Member –  March 2014 to Fall 2015

College, College of Arts and Sciences Teacher of the Year Committee, Committee Member –  August 15 2018 to May 15 2019

Department, Department of Visual and Performing Arts Creative Careers Job Fair Committee, Committee Member –  Summer 2019 to Spring 2020

University, Marketing Advisory Committee, Committee Member –  Spring 2017 to Spring 2019

College, Mini Grants Committee, Committee Member –  Fall 2010 to Spring 2013

Service to the Profession

Member, Florida Communication Association Fall 2016 to Present

Member, Caribbean Studies Association, International –  December 2019 to Present