Ekin has a PhD from New York University’s Media, Culture, Communication program. She has taught classes in a variety of themes related to the field of communication across different institutions in Seattle and New York. She has designed and taught classes exploring topics of media industries, digital media, and international media. Her classes at Comm Lead explores organizational culture, organizational storytelling, building communities, and thought leadership. In 2018 she won the UW’s Distinguished Teaching Award.
She has been an active advocate of transforming classes to active learning spaces. She is also passionate about developing novel pedagogical practices that would allow each student to bring their perspectives and identities as a useful tool to the classroom. Her integrative and innovative teaching approaches is a passion that she shares periodically with teaching and learning communities through pedagogical workshops across the US. She hopes to develop cutting-edge methods to create engaging and critical learning environments for the Communication Leadership program as well.
Her doctoral research was about scientific institutions working on genetics and bringing perspectives to understand contemporary institutional practices and challenges of institutional self-presentation. Her most recent research project focuses on understanding team dynamics in graduate classes. She has been collecting narratives of working in teams in graduate classes. With this research she hopes to generate conversations about best practices for team-based classes. This project will also have relevance for a variety of professional settings that also rely on sustainance and well-being of their teams.
Parallel to her academic existence was her love and pursuit of things related to food. During her doctoral work, she co-founded a food based social networking website, Gourmates. She wanted to use social media technologies to connect food-lovers and use that as a basis of their connection. As a part of her work as co-founder and public outreach coordinator, Ekin helped organize a series of large networking events for Gourmates community and foodies all across New York City. She gave up this pursuit to focus on her doctoral work and teaching Now, she is a cook and organizes pop-up dinners in Seattle area periodically where she serves her hybrid Northwestern cuisine inspired by that region of both US and Turkey. She also writes about food and travel to a variety of Turkish publications.