Katherine Oleson Picture

Katherine Oleson

CMST Dept. Chair


I have been teaching  at Bellevue College since 2005. I taught part-time for two quarters and then  was hired as a full-time faculty member of the Speech Department. In the summer  2008 quarter, we merged the Speech & the Communication Departments into the  Communication Studies Department.

I attended Gustavus  Adolphus College in St. Peter, MN, where I studied Communication Studies and  Scandinavian Studies (yes, I speak some Swedish). I moved to Seattle to attend  the University of Washington for my M.A. in Communication. I am particularly  interested in rhetorical studies and argumentation in print advertisements and  public speeches. I primarily teach Public Speaking, Interpersonal  Communication, and Survey of Speech Communication in our department at BC. I  enjoy teaching face-to-face courses as well as hybrid courses (a combination of  in-person and online learning).

I am currently  serving as the chair for the Communication Studies Department. I also am the  faculty advisor for our local chapter of Phi Theta Kappa, the International  Honor Society for two-year colleges. My campus involvement in FYE  (First-Year-Experience) and academic advising also provide opportunities to  welcome and connect with students.

I am often reminded  of the specific impact that three professors had on my overall college  experience and my growth as a person; I draw upon these interactions on a  regular basis. I value education and hope to pass this value on to my students.  The most rewarding element of teaching for me is watching students gain  confidence in themselves. Each day I receive affirmation of the many joys I  find in teaching.

My husband & I live  in Des Moines, a few blocks up from the Sound. I love seeing the Northwest  waterways and mountains every day, as I grew up on a farm in the Midwest  (Minnesota/South Dakota) and we don’t have any mountains to speak of there. We  have two golden retrievers, Cosmo and Seven, who are both named after  “Seinfeld” references. I enjoy being outdoors with them in this  beautiful region.