Erica Hilton earned her bachelor's degree from Johnson C. Smith University in communication arts. As an undergraduate student, she conducted research on the representation of African American women in hip-hop lyrics. Erica attended American University to earn her master’s degree in public communication. While there she worked as a graduate research assistant researching social media usages and trends for marketing research.
After completing her master’s degree, Hilton worked as the online activism manager for the Laborers’ International Union of North America (LIUNA) managing its website and social m! edia to promote activism within the labor movement. At LIUNA, she also produced a video series called Renewing Lives highlighting how unions renewed the lives of workers rebuilding the World Trade Center, building solar projects and pipelines.
As a doctoral student, HIlton's research interests primarily include digital media, race, gender and social movements. Specifically, she is interested in the different roles digital media play within social movements.