Nicole Veronica Bush is a critical communications scholar who studies health communication and online social movements. Nicole is interested in how Black female wellness online communities constitute a discursive structure that can be used to empower Black women and contradict normative health discourses in news media. Nicole aims to do this by understanding how the discourse that occurs on social media is a meaning-making process that generates a new type of knowledge that transcends and disrupts the influence of traditional media platforms and challenges the pejorative stereotyping of Black women. Through this deeper understanding, Nicole hopes to develop research that helps Black women redefine and reclaim their health, and help combat the systematic racism that is at the root of the health epidemic Black women are facing, which has only been exacerbated by the recent COVID-19 pandemic.
Nicole graduated from Pepperdine University in 2017 with a Master of Art in Strategic Communication. While at Pepperdine, Nicole’s Master thesis explored how Black Lives Matter use of twitter constitutes a discursive structure that challenges the Black criminality stereotype prevalent in mainstream news media. An abridged version of her master’s thesis is included in the forthcoming handbook, The Rhetoric of Social Movements: Networks, Power, and New Media (Crick et al., 2020). Nicole holds her Master of Communication Management from the University of Southern California (2010) and received her B.A. in English from Georgetown University (2009). In addition to her academic interests, Nicole is passionate about movement and wellness and is a nationally certified Pilates and meditation instructor.