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Edward R. Murrow College of Communication

Rachel E. (Chedda) Ellenwood

  1. Ph.D. Student



Rachel E. (Chedda) Ellenwood is a second year Ph.D. student at the Edward R. Murrow College of Communication at Washington State University. Her research interests focus on health and risk communications of Indigenous populations. She is also interested in Alzheimer’s research within Indigenous populations as well as nation-wide issues such as Missing and Murdered Indigenous People and victims of boarding/residential schools with focus on communication practice for these topics. Ellenwood has published in the Science Communication journal and received 2nd Place Student Paper for the International Communication Association in 2022.

Ellenwood holds an B.A. degree in Comparative Ethnic Studies, with minors in Women’s Studies and American Indian studies, and an M.A. in Communications, both from Washington State University. She is a first-generation college student and is an enrolled member of the Nez Perce Tribe. She is proud that WSU is located on her ancestral homelands.


  • A.A., General Direct Transfer, Northwest Indian College
  • B.A., Comparative Ethnic Studies, Washington State University
  • M.A., Communication, Washington State University

Classes Taught

COM 102 – Public Speaking in the Digital Age

Research Interests

  • Health communication
  • Risk communication
  • Indigenous populations
  • Indigenous health


  • 2022, Second place paper award, ICA

Selected Publications

Ellenwood, R., Boyd, A. D., & Higheagle Strong, Z. (2023). Communication and perspectives about COVID-19 and vaccinations among Native Americans. Science Communication, 45(2), 172–194.

Conference Presentations

Ellenwood, R., & Boyd, A. D. (2022). Communication and perspectives about COVID-19 and vaccinations among Native Americans. Paper presented at the 72nd annual International Communication Association conference, Paris, France.

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