School of Interdisciplinary Studies American StudiesCollege of Liberal Arts


Bienvenido – Akwaaba – ᎤᎵᎮᎵᏍᏗ – خوش آمدید – 欢迎光临

Welcome to the website of the American Studies Graduate Student Organization (ASGSO) at Purdue University. Here you will find information about who we are and what we do as graduate students in the program and beyond as well as an overview of upcoming events!


The American Studies Graduate Student Organization (ASGSO) is a student-run organization dedicated to promoting the needs, interests and ideas of graduate students in the American Studies Program at Purdue University.  More specifically, it strives to foster interdisciplinary graduate education and dialogue, establish a community within American Studies and beyond – with the ultimate objective of improving the quality of life for graduate students.  While enriching student life through academic development, ASGSO seeks to foster strong community among our members through social activities and gatherings.  

Contact ASGSO here!

Current ASGSO Officers

Kadari Taylor-Watson

President:  Megan Williams

Megan is a Ph.D. student in American Studies.  She received her Bachelor's degree in English, with a concentration in African American Studies, from Tuskegee University in Tuskegee, Alabama and her Master's degree in American Studies from Purdue University in West Lafayette, Indiana.  Her research explores the intersections of Food Studies, Critical Eating Studies, Critical Race and Ethnic Studies, and Feminist Thought.  Her current project is an interrogation of the cultural meanings of Pound Cake for Black women as it is encountered in cookbooks, literature, and popular culture.  

Rachel Bonini

Treasurer: Rachel Bonini

Rachel Bonini is a Ph.D. student in American Studies at Purdue.  Her current project interrogates the ways in which Disney encourages and reinforces modes of imperial tourism through its representations and contructions of Hawaii.  I look forward to serving as this year's Treasurer!  Please feel free to contact me if you have any questions about ASGSO or suggestions for programs or supplies that we can offer graduate students this year.

Bethany Scettrini

Library and Secretarial Chair: Bethany Scettrini

Bethany Scettrini is a Ph.D. student in American Studies.  Her research explores the culture of fandom, especially queer fans, and the communities they create in online spaces.  She's interested in the potential of the digital in creating new ways of doing community, negotiating identity, and participating in activism.  

Community Engagement Officer: Rocío León

Rocío León is a second year Master's student in American Studies at Purdue University.  Rocío's research interests include Border Studies, Latinx Businesses, Transational Networks and Mirgration, Race and Ethnicity, and Globalization.  As a Community Engagement Officer, Rocío León will oversee the Cultivating Leaders of Indiana Program, which is the product of American graduate students' partnership with Frankfort, IN community leaders.  The program provides a series of workshops on American Studies topics to minority youth in Frankfort. 

Juanita Crider

Steering Committee Representative: Juanita Crider

My primary role at Purdue is being a full time employee in the position of Program Advisor at the Black Cultural Center. However, I am also currently a doctoral student, who has completed course work and preparing for pre-lim exams, in American studies at Purdue University, with a concentration in African American Studies and New Media and Popular Cultural Studies. I also hold a graduate certificate in Women, Gender and Sexuality Studies. My research interests are representations of aging/elder black females and especially of their sexuality in contemporary black feminist literature, film, television and visual culture.  My dissertation plans are to use contemporary black literature, film, and television to explore what “spaces” popular culture allows for post-menopausal African American women. I am particularly interested in how the representation of mature black females are affected by the politics of respectability and how they might be impacted by a politics of pleasure. I am also currently working on a project exploring representations of elder black women on Pinterest and how these representations are categorized through the sites search function and names of boards on the site where they are featured. I grew up in Baltimore, Md. and visit there 2-3 times a year and actively follow and support grassroots activism in the city. In my spare time I enjoy traveling, spoiling my 3 granddaughters, Laila 4 yrs old, and 1 year old twins Larena & Lauren and writing poetry. 


Incoming Students

Greetings and welcome to Purdue University American Studies Program, 

On behalf of the American Studies Graduate Student Organization (ASGSO), I'd like to welcome you to the American Studies Program at Purdue University.  We are all very excited that you have chosen to join us, and we look forward to meeting all of you at our various events throughout this upcoming year.  

ASGSO aims to be of service to you during your time here at Purdue and we strive to fulfill the following objectives: 1) to foster interdisciplinary graduate education and dialogue; 2) to develop mentoring relationships between current and incoming students; 3) to improve the quality of life for graduate students; and 4) to assist in establishing a community within American Studies and beyond.  To that end, we offer various professionalization and social activities to foster scholarship and community among our members.  You will also have opportunities to serve your fellow grad students through ASGSO as well, so stay tuned for future annoucements.  

Please let me know if I can do anything to assist you as you are arriving on campus and getting familiar with the town, I've lived here for serveral years now so I'd be happy to help you get oriented as best I can. You can contact me directly at, or to ASGSO at

Until then, 

Megan Williams
President, ASGSO

ASGSO Events

2017-18 Events: TBA

Purdue University, West Lafayette, IN 47907 (765) 494-4600

© 2018 Purdue University | An equal access/equal opportunity university | Copyright Complaints | Maintained by CLA

If you have trouble accessing this page because of a disability, please contact the College of Liberal Arts Webmaster.

Some content on this site may require the use of a special plug-in or application. Please visit our plug-ins page for links to download these applications.