Dr. Vinita Agarwal is an Associate Professor of Public Relations and Strategic Communication at the Department of Communication Arts in Salisbury University, Maryland, USA (official website). She earned her Ph.D. in Communication (Media, Technology, and Society, dissertation) from Purdue University in 2009 (CV)


My research focuses on strategic health communication in the domain of patient-provider communication in therapeutic and integrative medicine settings. The research contributes to improving provider-patient communication to help meet patient goals for their health and healing outcomes (Research & Publications sample). To better understand the philosophy and treatment approach of traditional healing systems (including provider-patient knowledge of and communication of preventive medicine), I am currently pursuing my Level 2 Ayurveda for Health Professionals Certification. I received my level 1, Ayurvedic Wellness Educator certification in 2016 (Ayurveda Wellness Education Training Program Certificate). I am particularly interested in how we achieve healing alongside health outcomes for providers and patients addressing challenges in chronic care and long-term pain management. In these and related contexts, I seek to improve provider understanding and communication in the provider-patient relationship and patient empowerment and quality of life.

Findings inform provider-patient and health communication contexts including: 


My teaching focuses on strategic communication with a specific interest in health, technology, and the digital realm (Fall 2018 courses). Visit Dr. V’s Course Websites for information on my courses. A brief description of senior electives (courses created and offered) is here below. For more information, contact Dr. V. 

Health Communication (CMAT 394): This course examines health communication theory and practice with an emphasis on health promotion and disease prevention. Through engagement and reflection upon health communication perspectives in context, the course cultivates research-driven awareness, understanding, and ownership of individual health and well-being alongside skilled competency in communication ability for careers in healthcare. (recent syllabus)

  • Students from this course have completed research projects and earned internships in healthcare systems (e.g., Atlantic General Medical Center, Berlin). 

Digital Public Relations (CMAT 445): Teaches principles of digital communications management to develop strategy through analytic audience research, designing messages that drive behavior, and tailored use of digital platforms to achieve organizational goals and objectives as a digital communications consultant. The emphasis is on gaining fundamental understanding of leveraging digital communication principles and data-driven audience insight to achieve selected digital engagement goals in applied contexts. (Course website and recent syllabus)

  • Students from this course have completed research projects for successful graduate admission to top-ranked PR programs and found careers as digital media managers, social media marketing, and digital consultants, in a range of industries. 

International Public Relations (CMAT 447): This course provides the knowledge frameworks, critical thinking, and analytic skills necessary to prepare the advanced PR student in the successful research, design, implementation, and evaluation of international PR projects. The course emphasizes intensive practical and theoretical engagement to address challenges faced in harnessing the potential of diverse and intercultural teams and interactions in organizations and social contexts. (Course website and recent syllabus)

  • Students from this course have completed research projects presented at undergraduate research conferences, gained admission to graduate PR programs, and gained valuable intercultural communication skills for human relations jobs in organizations. 

Other courses taught: Research Methods (CMAT 297) and Introduction to Public Relations (CMAT 248). 

My courses strive to cultivate a civic engagement sensibility in my students (here)Pinterest has my students’ Infograph creations and other visual pins. 


I serve as the faculty co-advisor to our communication honors society, Lambda Pi Eta, as chair of the Fulton Sustainability Committee (2017-2018), and co-chair of the Medical Humanities workgroup/FLC. In collaboration with LPE’s board, I recently organized the communication department’s LPE 2017 conference. I am a member of the Teaching and Learning Council at NCA, and third vice-chair elect at the Feminist and Women’s Studies division at NCA. I have founded the Office of Undergraduate Research and Creative Activity (2016–2017), been a past member of the SUSRC (Salisbury University Student Research Conference 2011–2016) organizing board, and member of the General Education FYE workgroup. A few selected photographs below. Some albums of departmental and university events I’ve organized: 

LPE conference photographs 2018|NCUR 2016 | NCUR 2017 

Founding Director of OURCA participant in: Council of Undergraduate Research Institute, Ottawa, Canada (2016)


Nature and family are my twin anchors and source of sustenance. I love to hike, run trails, cook, and spend time with my three guys, one of whom is a very naughty and playful chocolate lab. In my life, research, and teaching, I hope to understand, embody, and communicate healing and wellness with a philosophy of sustainable co-existence (occasional musings here)

Japan, Alaska travels, and family album 2015 | Las Vegas, NCA 2015 |Boston, ECA 2017

New York City, New York

**All Rights Reserved. (c) Vinita Agarwal 2013. All content, photographs, and ideas expressed on this site and each of my sites linked from here belong to the author.