This past May, I finished my Masters in communication from Virginia Tech. Two years before that, I finished my Bachelors degree in political science. While I have studied both political science and communication, my interests lie within American politics and political behavior. I chose to major in political science and minor in communication as an undergraduate, which peaked my interests in political communication. Throughout my graduate program in communication, I refined my interests with a focus on how political views are constructed through the mass media and what affect that has on the audience. My thesis specifically concerned political pundits in the mass media (specifically on ABC, CBS, CNN, FOX, and NBC) and what effects they have on the viewers. While the aspect of communication in politics interests me, I am more concerned with studying political participation by the youth. In the past I have worked on independent studies analyzing what encompasses and drives political participation in a digital age. Specifically, I have looked at political participation by college aged students and why they are more likely to be involved in certain elections over others and what can be done to increase and level participation. Within this program I would like to further my studies of political participation of youth in American politics as portrayed through the lens of the mainstream media or through new media technologies.