Hunter Sansom, Department of Communication Student of Distinction

Hunter Sansom, Department of Communication Student of Distinction

Hunter Sansom is a high achiever in everything she does. She grew up in Fresno but went to Buchanan High School in Clovis and graduated with a 4.023 GPA. She currently has a 4.0 at Fresno State as she finalizes her Bachelor of Arts in Communication. Her professors consistently remark that her understanding of the coursework went far beyond just reading the materials ahead of class time.

“Hunter not only performed at the top of each class but moreover enriched the experience for every other student by applying intricate readings of abstract theory to concrete situations experienced by her peers,” Dr. Kevin J. Macy-Ayotte, professor and chair of the Department of Communication. “It is not simply that she read the material and did the work, but rather that she clearly thought deeply about course readings, appreciating their nuances and interrogating their assumptions, and then brought that rich understanding to discussions with the rest of each class.”

Sansom has presented her research at two regional conferences, Undergraduate Scholars Research Conference, Western States Communication Association (WSCA) in Denver, CO, and the Undergraduate Scholars Research Conference, WSCA in Seattle, WA. She was also a Fresno State representative for Sexual Violence Prevention and Awareness at the NASPA Strategies Conference in New Orleans, LA, and the Fresno State Representative for Associated Students, Inc. at the NASPA Western Regional Conference in Sacramento. 

As a member of the Barking Bulldogs debate team from 2016 to 2019, Sansom had a unique aptitude for argument and debate. 

“Hunter was a valuable member of the Barking Bulldogs debate team. She joined the debate team as a novice and rapidly progressed through the ranks, becoming a member of our top varsity team,” said Dr. Douglas Fraleigh, professor. 

She also earned the Cross Examination Debate Association’s National Debate Scholar Summa Cum Laude award for the 2017-18 season.

Besides working as a tutor, Sansom’s resume has a tightly bulleted section of extracurricular activities during her time at Fresno State such as the president of the Peer Ambassador of Wellness for the Student Health and Counseling Center, and ASI senator for the College of Arts and Humanities.

Sansom attributes her hard work to her upbringing.

“I feel as though my academic career has been defined by the perseverance and dedication to passion that my family instilled in me,” said Sansom. “Growing up within a single-parent household often meant that challenges were inevitable and around every corner, but my mother and maternal grandparents taught me and my siblings that with time and effort, we could always aspire for more.”

Consistently on the President’s list and a member of the Honor Society of Phi Kappa Phi, Samson has received multiple scholarships, awards, and honors. She has received the Anthony J. Perella Memorial Scholarship, the William G. Walsh and Isabel C. Walsh Scholarship, the William Filbert Davis Memorial Scholarship, and the Barking Bulldogs Debate Team Scholarship. 

Having applied to the Fresno State’s master of communication program, Sansom plans to continue on to receive her Ph.D. with the goal of being an instructor of communication in the CSU system.

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The College of Arts and Humanities provides a diverse student population with the communication skills, humanistic values and cultural awareness that form the foundation of scholarship. The college offers intellectual and artistic programs that engage students and faculty and the community in collaboration, dialog and discovery. These programs help preserve, illuminate and nourish the arts and humanities for the campus and for the wider community.

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