Skillen (Chair), Poniatowski, Gillis, Helb, Hughes, Johnson, Telleen
For more information, please visit the Department’s website or check your course syllabi, which are available through the course instructor or at the High Library.
The Department of Communications offers a comprehensive preparation in the professional field of communications, firmly grounded in a well-rounded liberal arts education. In addition to developing written, spoken, and performance skills, students learn communications theories, media design, management, and production.
Advanced courses in oral presentation, media management, graphics, writing, audio and video production, new media, corporate communications, and cultural communications, among others, permit majors to advance into this discipline.
Department facilities and the Media Center are located in the Steinman Center for Communications and Fine Arts. This Center contains modern equipment in audio and video studios, and graphics and multi-image laboratories. The student-operated media stations, WWEC 88.3 FM and ECTV Channel 40, and the student-run newspaper, the Etownian, are housed in the Center. The Department also operates a citizen journalism news website, www.wetown.org.
The curriculum is complemented by a number of Departmental organizations: WWEC-FM radio, Photography Club, Society for Collegiate Journalists (honorary society), the Jay Firm (student public relations agency), ECTV-40, and others. The Etownian provides excellent journalism experiences for majors. These organizations sponsor speakers, workshops, contests, and field trips to enhance campus life while making the student’s classroom experience more meaningful.
The curriculum, along with the many co-curricular activities, prepares majors for careers in corporate and institutional communications, public relations, marketing communications, broadcasting and media production related fields, journalism, newspaper and magazine writing and reporting, social media management, advertising, sales, law, and many more fields.
The Department offers three majors: Journalism , Mass Communications , and Public Relations .
A Communications minor is offered to students majoring in other programs. The minor permits students to reach a level of competency in written, spoken, and visual communications to complement their primary area of preparation.
Internships and Practica
Out-of-classroom, on-the-job field experiences are encouraged of all majors and minors. An experience linking the academic world and the work world can enable an advanced student to apply – in a practical way – understandings and abilities in a career-related position. Practica may be elected by majors and minors at the sophomore level and above and are available for zero, one, two, or three semester credits with on- or off-campus sponsors. Board members of ECTV and WWEC may also receive a one-credit practicum experience. Practicum experiences are repeatable to a maximum of four credits and may count only as general elective credit. Internship credits also count only as general elective credits. They are available only to seniors and must be taken only for 12 semester credits (requiring the internship to be the equivalent of a full-time position for an entire semester). Additionally, the internship option requires an overall 2.70 grade point average and a 3.00 grade point average in the major. The Department’s “Guide to the Preparation of Internships” serves as an outline of procedures and requirements for an internship. Students are permitted to seek their own positions for either option (practicum or internship) or to apply for one from the many opportunities already listed with regional communications organizations.
All students must have a 2.00 grade point average to declare the major or minor and enroll in any courses above the 100 level.
Honors in the Discipline
The Department of Communications participates in the College Honors in the Discipline Program. Communications majors with a GPA of at least 3.6 in the major and 3.5 overall by the end of the fall semester of their junior year are invited to explore a topic of their choosing and produce a major work in consultation with the student’s honors committee. A public oral presentation of the work is also expected. This experience is offered by invitation to those students who meet the Honors in the Discipline criteria.