Communication presents new programs

Meaghan Joyce

The communication department went into high gear at Monday night’s kick off to Communication Week. Students, faculty members and visitors gathered in the St. David’s Room of the Connelly Center to learn about the communication department’s new programs and certificates in journalism, public relations and a post-baccalaureate certificate program in strategic communication.

“The kick off was outstanding,” department chair Terry Nance said. “Whetherstudent, faculty member or visitor, it was clear that everyone in the room was excitedabout the possibilities the field of communication holds.”

The department designed a new logo for the department that reads: “communication is the world, and the world is communication.”

“The new logo captures the spirit of what we are after,” Nance said.

Throughout the evening, different members of the communication staff spoke about the new opportunities within the department.

John Huxford, a former writer and editor in Great Britain and also the director of the new journalism program, spoke with confidence about the strong credentials of the journalism staff.

“All the teachers have either worked or still work in the field of journalism,” Huxford said. “They have all had hands-on experience and they all bring it to their teaching.”

The new public relations program, directed by William Cowen, was also introduced. This program offers students a full array of PR coursesincluding public relations, public relations writing and public relations campaigns.

“The program is very popular because of its exciting, practical content and its real world application,” Cowen said. “Public relations is a dynamic field and that is reflected in our PR academic program.”

Susan Mackey-Kallis explained the advantages of going for the new graduate certificate in Strategic Planning.

The certificate, which consists of five courses, prepares students for careers in public relations, advertising, media education, corporate communication, journalism and human resources.

“What works out well for the students here is that they can take courses towards this certificate as an undergraduate, and then all they have to do is take the additional courses post-graduate to get the certificate,” Mackey-Kallis said. “You can also take five additional courses after you receive the certificate and receive your master’s degree.”

The crowd was also presented with off-campus opportunities such as studying abroad in Greece or spending the semester interning in Washington, D.C., or Los Angeles.

At the end of the night, guest speakers Kevin Ferris, editor of the Inquirer Community Voices and Bob Monek, the producer at WPVI-TV, spoke about the importance of communication as a field of study and as a profession.

“Be open to criticism,” Ferris said to the future journalists in the room. “You’re always going to learn a little something about how to do your job better.”

The night came to a close in the basement of Falvey Memorial Library with a tour of the new studio and food, refreshments and networking were available.