Lauren Wilks

Media and Cultural Studies




2157 Vilas Hall

Lauren Wilks

Expertise and Activities

Lauren Wilks is a PhD candidate in the Media and Cultural Studies program at the University of Wisconsin – Madison. She studies power, representation, and identity in media industries, on screens, and online. She earned her M.A. in Media Studies from the University of Texas at Austin, where her thesis project analyzed industrial change over time in race and representation in teen television programs. Before starting her graduate studies, she worked in public relations and communications.


  • M.A. Media Studies, Portfolio in Women’s & Gender Studies, The University of Texas at Austin, 2019
  • B.A. Communication and English, Trinity University, 2013


  • Advanced Opportunity Fellowship, UW-Madison, Letters & Sciences, 2022-2023
  • Elliott Dissertation Scholarship, UW-Madison, Communication Arts, 2022
  • Sharon Sites Award in Film and Media and Cultural Studies, UW-Madison, Communication Arts, 2021
  • First Place Graduate Student Writing Award: “The Serena Show: Mapping Tensions Between Masculinized and Feminized Media Portrayals of Serena Williams and the Black Female Sporting Body,” Society for Cinema and Media Studies Women’s Caucus, 2019