Dr. Milagros (Millie) Rivera is an accomplished and results-driven academic with exceptional teaching and facilitating skills and proven experience developing educational/training programs. She has an extensive international network and experience working with and managing culturally diverse teams, supervising and mentoring young academics as well as undergraduate and graduate students. She also has experience supporting and mentoring cultural students’ groups.
She started her career as an assistant professor in the College of Journalism and Communications at the University of Florida, U.S.A., where she was tenured and promoted to associate professor. She then moved to the Department of Telecommunications at Indiana University in Bloomington, U.S.A. and subsequently accepted a visiting fellowship with the Information and Communication Management Program at the National University of Singapore (NUS). She eventually became the head of that program and restructured it as the Department of Communications and New Media. Under her leadership, CNM became one of NUS's most popular programs and in 2012 was rated as the third best in the world (QS Global University Rankings by Subject).
Dr. Rivera moved to South Africa in late 2012 and founded Kerplunk Personal Mastery. She was a consultant for the University of Cape Town Graduate School of Business' Executive MBA Program and facilitated workshops on self mastery, mindful communication, and emotional intelligence. Eventually she became the head of the Department of Communication Science at the University of the Free State (UFS) in Bloemfontein, South Africa, where she restructured the ethnic and educational make-up of the department; instilled a more student-focused approach that improved students’ learning outcomes; championed the adoption and use of teaching and learning technologies, and improved teaching standards, which led to staff receiving several teaching awards. She also increased the department's research productivity and transformed a dysfunctional organizational culture to one of effective collaboration, respect, diversity and inclusiveness. While at UFS she acted as Dean of the Faculty of Humanities for one year.
Teaching areas: Intercultural communication, regulation of information and communication technologies (ICTs), new media and society, mobile media, internet regulation, computer/ICT-related crime and governance of ICTs.
Research areas: Intercultural communication, ICT policy, online privacy, e-government, and youth and new media appropriation in developing countries.
Publications: Dr. Rivera's work has been published in Communitas, Journal of Creative Communication, Journal of Critical and Contemporary Culture, Communication Education, Science Technology and Society, Communications of the AMC, New Media and Society, Online Journal of Communication and Media Technologies, Journalism and Mass Communication Monographs, Journalism and Mass Communication Quarterly, Journalism History, The Urban Lawyer, Hastings Communications and Entertainment Law Journal, Federal Communications Law Journal, World Internet Law Report, Communications and the Law, Cuadernos de Información (a Chilean academic journal), Asian Pacific Law and Policy Journal, Media Asia and Asian Journal of Communication. She was also the author of the broadcast regulation chapter in Communication and the Law, a media law book published by Vision Press, U.S.A and co-edited a book on intercultural communication in South Africa published by Juta Academic Publishers.