Postdoctoral Diversity and Innovation Scholar
Department of Communication
Mike Alvarez’s research examines how stigmatized social groups create meaning using various technologies and techniques. His dissertation explored the meanings discursively created by users of an online suicide forum, and his first book, “The Paradox of Suicide and Creativity: Authentications of Human Existence,” examines the links between creativity in the arts and sciences and self-destruction. Current research projects address end-of-life narratives during COVID-19 and the design of suicide prevention apps and their intended environment of use. Alvarez has also completed a memoir, “The Color of Dusk,” which confronts the taboo surrounding mental health and suicide in the Asian/Pacific American community. He earned his Ph.D. in communication and a Graduate Film Certificate from the University of Massachusetts Amherst, where he was awarded a Paul and Daisy Soros Fellowship. Alvarez also holds an M.F.A. in creative writing from Goddard College and a B.A. from Rutgers.