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Fall 2017


In this issue

The fall 2017 issue of the Department of Communication alumni newsletter celebrates several accomplishments, including the first classes of our new graduate program, accreditation and the creation of a new undergraduate major and minor.  


  • The department’s Master of Science degree in communication management welcomed its first students, who come from a variety of backgrounds and want to become leaders in the communication industry. Story here
  • The department’s Bachelor of Science degree in communication won unanimous approval for accreditation by the Accrediting Council on Education in Journalism and Mass Communications. Story here.
  • Undergraduates now have the option to get a Bachelor of Arts degree in communication studies, which is a major that focuses on interpersonal, mediated and organizational communication skills for many types of businesses. The department also collaborated with the Department of Political Science and Public Administration to start a joint minor in political campaigning and advocacy. Story here.
  • The top graduates in advertising, multimedia journalism, production and public relations were recognized by the department during the spring graduation reception. Story here.  
  • The newest recipient of the department’s Steve J. Boroweic Memorial Scholarship, Tabitha Bingham, talks about how the scholarship’s financial support will help her pursue a degree in advertising. Story here. 
  • Robert Davis, class of 2002, shares the story of his career path from The Mandarin News to The Washington Post. Story here
  • Ann Luce, class of 2003, explains her journey from being the youngest editorial writer on a daily newspaper in the United States to a professor at Bournemouth University in the United Kingdom. Story here.   
  • The “Tech Tips” column features software for live streaming and a memo app. Story here. 
  • Stay current with faculty members’ most recent research and awards. Story here. 
  • If you want to get more involved with the department, there are eight great ways to stay connected with the Department of Communication. Story here. 



John H. Parmelee, Ph.D.
Professor and Chair




Classes begin for the M.S. in Communication Management

By Alisha Johnson, Ronnesha Rodgers, and Rosimely Ulpino

 Master's students class

M.S. in Communication Management students begin their studies at one of the evening classes on campus.


The students who make up the UNF Department of Communication’s new graduate program are looking forward to learning skills that will help them become leaders in communication.


“I love that the professors genuinely took the time to get to know me and my professional goals and were willing to offer their help and guidance to help me be successful,” said Kayla Nasr, who is a member of the first class of students in the M.S. in communication management and works at the American Lung Association in Florida.


The 36-credit program consists of ethical and legal issues in business and communication, metrics, media management and strategy. Graduates can apply the degree to jobs within public relations firms, advertising agencies, news outlets, production companies, healthcare companies, government agencies and corporate communication departments.


“Students in our master’s degree take a deep dive into the management and leadership aspects of the communication industry,” said Dr. John Parmelee, professor and chair, and a member of the graduate faculty. Dr. Tulika Varma, an assistant professor of public relations and a member of the graduate faculty, added that “the master’s program in communication management at UNF is uniquely designed to address the growing demand for communication professionals who can strategically align an organization’s communication with its mission.”


Most of the 20 students in the master’s program received their undergraduate degree from the UNF Department of Communication, while others come to the program by way of Florida State University, University of Florida, California State University and the University of Missouri. Some of the students who did not major in communication at the undergraduate level have degrees in health administration and business management. Igor Tavuzhnyanskiy, who received his bachelor’s degree in political science, hopes to build “more credibility in communications” while in the master’s program.


Most of the students are in their late 20s and early 30s. The majority received their undergraduate degree several years ago and currently work full time in the communication industry.


The first classes to be offered in fall 2017 are MMC 6256-Foundations of Communication Management, MMC 6006-Strategic Communication Theory, 6994-Social Media Management, and COM 5627-Lying & Deception. Spring 2018 classes will include MMC 6206-Ethics in Communication Management, MMC 6426-Qualitative Research Methods in Mass Communication, MMC 6421-Quantitative Research Methods in Mass Communication, and MMC 5267-Issues in Emerging Media.


UNF is currently the only school in the state to offer a master’s degree that has communication management as the primary focus, and students appreciate it. “Although I am in a program that is new, I can see the courses helping me develop in my current field,” said Jessica Sabbs, a master’s student who works at Mayo Clinic.


More information about the master’s degree in communication management can be found on the department’s website.



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Department of Communication receives ACEJMC accreditation

ACEJMC logo 


The Accrediting Council on Education in Journalism and Mass Communications (ACEJMC) voted unanimously on April 28 to accredit the Department of Communication’s B.S. in communication degree. The department is one of just five communication programs in Florida to have ACEJMC accreditation. During the accreditation vote, which was held in Chicago, the UNF Department of Communication was singled out as an example that other universities should follow in terms of how it assesses student learning and how curriculum adjustments are based on assessment data.


ACEJMC, which was established in 1945, accredits 113 communication programs around the world. Achieving accreditation requires communication programs to meet nine standards, which deal with issues such as assessment of student learning, research productivity, diversity, resources and student services. 


Accreditation occurs every six years. The ACEJMC website has more information about the accreditation process. 



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The department adds another major and minor offering to its undergraduate offerings


In an effort to offer more choices to students, the Department of Communication has created a Bachelor of Arts in communication studies and a minor in political campaigning and advocacy. The B.A. in communication studies includes courses in mediated, interpersonal and organizational communication. The B.A. in communication studies differs from the department’s existing B.S. in communication in that the B.S. focuses on preparing students for mass media jobs in journalism, advertising and public relations, while the B.A. focuses on interpersonal and organizational communication within a wide variety of businesses.  


The B.A. in communication studies will provide the Jacksonville metropolitan region with high quality graduates equipped to pursue entry and/or supervisory positions in the public, private, nonprofit, and governmental sectors in which critical thinking, research methods and effective communication skills are required. Interviews and surveys of students and the local business community indicate high demand for the B.A. in communication studies. Classes start this fall. 

The new minor in political campaigning and advocacy is a joint program with the Department of Political Science and Public Administration. The minor is a response to demand from students and employers. The 15-credit minor includes courses dealing with political parties, elections, survey research, political advertising, crisis communication and the legislative process. There is also a required internship/field experience.  



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Departmental graduation reception honors award winners


The department’s Outstanding Student Award winners for 2017 were announced at the spring reception. The event, held in the Student Union April 28, included communication faculty, graduates and their families. The winners represent the best graduating seniors in advertising, multimedia journalism, production and public relations as voted by the faculty. Also honored was the graduating senior with the top GPA. Below are the Outstanding Student Award winners’ comments about what they value the most from their time in the department. 


Danielle Arnett, Outstanding Advertising Student: “My time at UNF and as a student in the Department of Communication has shaped me into a different person than I was four years ago. Especially my senior year, I learned to think uniquely, accept criticism gracefully and constantly push myself to grow as a professional and an individual. Through my internships at DiscoverTec and Jacksonville Magazine, I developed the confidence to excel in the professional world. I am so grateful to have spent these last four unforgettable years here at UNF.” 


Danielle Arnett receives award from Dr. David Deeley

Danielle Arnett received her award from Dr. David Deeley, who was the master of ceremonies for the reception.


Cassidy Alexander, Outstanding Multimedia Journalism Student: “I’m most proud of working with the UNF Spinnaker, and I’m thankful of my professors’ encouragement of that endeavor. I’m also grateful to have participated in electives and upper-level classes, such as Dr. Paula Horvath’s Social Media for Journalism and Dr. David Deeley’s Advanced Multimedia Storytelling, to give me a stronger understanding of how the field of journalism works outside of the classroom. The things I learned through hands-on experience during my time at UNF are what I will remember the most.” 


Nathaniel Krafve, Outstanding Production Student: “I am proud to share that I persevered through my education to become the graduate I am today. I’ve had several experiences along the way that will impact the future I want to create for myself in the television industry. I’ve been the camera equipment manager for the UNF Department of Communication, a video specialist for the ESPN3 broadcast team, and a video assistant intern for the Clearwater Marine Aquarium. The Department of Communication helped me meet and connect with well-established professionals in the field. Through all of my coursework, success, industry experience and even failures, I will attest the greatest lesson I've gained is that perseverance pays off.” 

Nathaniel Krafve receives award

Nathaniel Krafve


Heather Smith, Outstanding Public Relations Student: “The event I’ll remember the most is being chosen to participate in helping with national and international media during President Obama’s visit. I've never been able to see a sitting president in person, which was an honor. Another experience has been serving as an account executive on the leadership team for professor Dee Colvin’s Campaigns course. I initially wasn’t sure if I’d be able to handle the responsibility of helping three teams of my classmates (Creative, Communication, and Events), but professor Colvin chose me. I’m proud to serve on a team that has been able to handle the pressure of running an agency. Overall, the experience with the professors has been outstanding. Professor Day was instrumental in providing the exposure of running his classroom like a newsroom. He also drilled the importance of the AP Stylebook into my brain (I have three stylebooks on-hand just in case I need them). I have been under the instruction of professors Ladendorff, Nam, Roman, Doggett, Perkins and Horvath. They have made my UNF experience pleasant with their straightforward attitude about how the communication industry is and what is expected from all who choose to enter the field.”  


Heather Smith receives award

Heather Smith

Zach Miller, Highest GPA for a 2016-17 B.S. in Communication Graduate: “The experiences I will remember most are working on a public relations campaign together with fellow students, receiving the Oscar Patterson scholarship and earning a job through my internship for my communication degree.” 


Zach Miller receives award

Zach Miller



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What winning the Steve J. Boroweic Memorial Scholarship means to me

By Tabitha Bingham

Junior, Department of Communication  


Tabitha Bingham

Tabitha Bingham enjoys her hometown of Bradenton during a beautiful sunset.


My name is Tabitha Bingham, and I am a 21-year-old transfer student majoring in communication with a concentration in advertising. One of the main reasons I chose the University of North Florida was for the enormous amount of opportunities it provides for its students. One of the most appealing factors of UNF is that you are guaranteed an internship concerning your major. Having an internship is beneficial to students like myself, because you gain exposure to real-world problems and issues that perhaps are not found in textbooks, as well as having an easy transition from being a student to entering the workforce. In addition to my internship opportunity, this summer I am back home in Bradenton, Florida, working full time as a customer service sales representative at Pinch-A-Penny. With my time at Pinch-A-Penny, I have worked closely with the managers and owners learning and gaining knowledge about Pinch-A-Penny’s advertising management. Having my foot in the door at Pinch-A-Penny, and having wonderful owners that support me makes me hopeful that next summer I could possibly have an internship at Pinch-A-Penny headquarters.  

Moreover, being the recipient of the Steve J. Boroweic Memorial Scholarship has been instrumental in my success. All my hard work has really paid off, especially with help from my family who have supported me from the beginning. This scholarship will provide me the means to continue my education at UNF, and give me more motivation to succeed. Also, this scholarship means more financial security for my family. My family has sacrificed a great deal to send my brother and I to college. I am extremely honored and humbled to be chosen as the recipient of the Steve J. Boroweic Memorial Scholarship. Furthermore, I am excited to continue my education here at UNF, and I am anxious to start pursuing my career in the field of Communication.  



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Journalism alum uses his editing and design skills at The Washington Post

By Robert Davis

Class of 2002


Robert Davis

Before moving to the nation’s capital, Robert Davis spent seven years at The Boston Globe.


It doesn’t feel so long ago, but it has been nearly 15 years since I began the journey that took me from the graduation stage at UNF Arena to the nation’s capital and to The Washington Post, where I work as a news editor. There have been other career stops — and a whole lot of news —  in between, but the lessons I learned at UNF have guided me along the way. 

After earning my bachelor’s degree in communications in 2002, I landed my first newspaper job in Jacksonville at a tiny weekly called The Mandarin News. (Don’t look for it; it’s long defunct.) I was one of two full-time staffers and I had to know how to do everything: Report, write, edit, design, photograph. That experience was invaluable, and it got me in the door at other papers in Jacksonville — The Business Journal, then The Florida Times-Union — and eventually to The Boston Globe, where I landed in 2007 as a copy editor/designer.  

I would spend seven years in Boston, rising to page one designer and finally assistant design director for news. It was an unforgettable time to be there. Boston's sports teams were on a tear, and I had the rare chance to design A1 for two World Series, two Super Bowls, two NBA Finals, and two Stanley Cup Finals. But that cheer was dampened by the horror and tragedy of the 2013 Boston Marathon bombing. The Pulitzer Prize we would later earn for our coverage was a bittersweet honor. “There’s nobody in this room that wanted to cover this story. And each and every one of us hopes that nothing like it ever happens again on our watch,” editor Brian McGrory told the staff.  

My time working with the Globe reporters and editors who would later be immortalized in the film “Spotlight” were some of my happiest days. But when The Washington Post reached out to me in 2014, I knew I had to hear them out — and I’m glad I did.  

The paper, flush with cash from a new owner, was upping its ambitions across the board. I joined as a page one and projects designer, and oversaw presentation for special projects and investigations for print and the Web. I developed a talent for digital design, and in 2016 I said farewell to print when I moved to the homepage team. Now, I monitor news, select stories and write headlines for washingtonpost.com, and help craft the alerts for our mobile apps. And because I can’t seem to leave design behind, I often work with editors and graphic artists to enrich the presentation for some of our most special projects.  

To say the least, it is an interesting time to be at The Post and in Washington. But my experiences at UNF — particularly the lessons I learned from Dr. Berrin Beasley and Dr. Robert Bohle — and my work at The Spinnaker conjure warm memories for having planted the seed for a fulfilling career in journalism. 



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Journalism alum now teaching journalism at university in England

By Ann Luce

Class of 2003


Ann Luce

Ann Luce recently published a book about media coverage of suicides.


When I graduated from UNF back in 2003, I had spent three amazing years as writer, news editor and editor of The Spinnaker. I was in Dr. Berrin Beasley’s Writing Editorials and Columns class when 9/11 happened. And I believe it was in Marcia Ladendorff’s Media Literacy class where I created an analogy between Osama Bin Laden and the role of television in society at that time. 

It was in the now-retired Dr. Robert Bohle’s class where I cried and cried because I just couldn’t figure out how to use commas while using AP style, but also learned the mantra, “if you’re mother says she loves you… check it out!”  

I always seemed to have repeat conflicts with the department chair at the time, Dr. Oscar Patterson III. It was in Dr. Patterson’s ethics class where he and I went three rounds yelling about how journalism was about changing the world (my position). He called me a silly girl, and said gruffly, “It’s about money!” He and I also had an interesting exchange years later when I graduated and came back to UNF to cover a story. It was during an interview; my pen ran out of ink; my tape recorder ran out of batteries (seriously! I still swear I changed them that morning!). Not wanting to give him the satisfaction of seeing me unprepared, I continued to interview him, only I pressed down much harder on my page with my pen. When I got back to the newsroom: “Luce, where’s your story?” “Give me 20 minutes, Jim (my editor). I need to shade in my notes. … Who’s got a pencil?” We did laugh at that when we buried the hatchet about three years post-graduation. I still believe journalism is about changing the world.  

These are the stories and “teachable moments” I share with my own students now at Bournemouth University where I teach multi-media journalism and communication.  

When I left UNF, I went on to cover maternity leave on the features desk at The Florida Times-Union. I was so bad at writing headlines and cutlines that the chief sub told me to never leave reporting. After that, I landed a full-time job at the Jacksonville Business Journal. I hated math and was now faced with a tsunami of SEC forms, contracts and having to figure out percentage increases and decreases on mortgage rates and what that meant, along with Jacksonville’s budget and Florida’s State budget. I learned my trade here.  

Following a particular brilliant stream of scoops back in 2004, The Florida Times-Union came-a-knocking. They didn’t like that the local weekly newspaper was surpassing their endeavours on a regular basis, both in the paper (which came out on Friday) and online (we only published online once a week back in those days). I found myself offered a job as the youngest editorial writer on a daily newspaper in the United States. The job of a lifetime, especially for one so enamoured with the utopian potential of journalism.  

I have worked with some of the best journalists in American journalism: Mike Clark, my editor — never a kinder and better man. He also drilled me on those commas, made me stand over his shoulder one day and said, “You WILL learn.” Joe Adams, author of The Florida Public Records Handbook and creator of our team catchphrase, “the super scoopers.” And the talented and funny Ed Gamble, the Times-Union’s first and only editorial cartoonist.  

In 2005, personal tragedy struck, when my friend and fellow UNF student and former Spinnaker editor, Richard O’Bryant, died by suicide. His death shook us all, the Department of Communication, students and faculty alike. Following his death, I wrote a series of award-winning editorials on suicide prevention for The Florida Times-Union. But when the paper was ready to stop talking about suicide, it was all I wanted to do. I made the tough decision to leave journalism and the United States, and head over to Cardiff in Wales. It was there that I pursued a Ph.D. in Journalism Studies, inspired by the amazing professors I had at UNF. I thought, if I can’t be a journalist anymore, then at least I can teach journalism in the way that they taught me.  

My Ph.D. thesis looked at the representations of suicide in the British press, focusing mainly on the Bridgend suicides in South Wales. I have since published a book about these deaths, published in 2016. 

I have been teaching journalism for nearly a decade now. I’ve had to learn how to use Twitter and Facebook (They didn’t exist back in my day. Now I feel old!). I’ve also had to learn how to make and edit video, plus audio — truly becoming a multi-media journalist. I’ve spent time back in the newsroom quite a few times over the years, at The Guardian and The Telegraph in London. I’ve also been to Google and MSN. The last major piece of journalism I completed was back in 2013 when I created an interactive documentary with colleagues at Bournemouth University about gang violence in El Salvador. It was the lessons I learned here that then allowed me to teach digital magazines to my own students and create apps for the IPad.  

Since I graduated in 2003, the field of journalism has changed, but the principles have not. Yes, I may be learning how to use SnapChat and teaching it in a journalistic manner to my students, but I still teach them how to find a story, how to interview, and yes, how to fact check. As the journalism world continues to change and become faster, it’s the strong foundation of journalism, research and ethics that I learned at UNF that continues to steer me onwards.  



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Tech tips

By Dr. Chunsik Lee

Associate Professor, Department of Communication


New software helps with live streaming

Open Broadcaster Software is free, open source software for live streaming and recording. It expands its functionality because it is more compatible with many developing plugins (than proprietary screen capture applications such as Screencastomatic and Camtasia). It can record users via video cam, screen capture and capture browser activities. It is available on iOS, Windows and Linux.


WorkFlowy is a simple hierarchical memo app 

WorkFlowy is a memo app featuring unlimited nested lists. Prominent Silicon Valley techies, such as Evan Williams and Farhard Manjoo, use it for their work. You can organize your thoughts and to-do lists by bullet point. You can expand and collapse bullet points and subdirectories. Each bullet point works as an individual note page. Tagging, sharing, searching, and multi-device uses are all possible. It helps you organize your complicated tasks and thoughts in doing research and writing articles or books.


Introducing a reverse image search engine 

As fake news and altered/too-good-to-be-true images are undermining the journalism industry and the backbone of our democracy, several news verification applications have been introduced lately. Google image search has served to track back to the original image on the web. It, however, simply turns out the same or similar images found on the web. It is difficult for users to differentiate the sources of images and evaluate the authenticity. Tineye.com reverse image search lists the similar images with the one that users submit by source. It also provides the crawled date for each image source. It’s a useful tool for journalists and PR pros to verify the images that circulate on the web.



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Faculty activity


Dr. Christa Arnold published “Listening Skills and the Medical Encounter: Perceptions from Practicing Physicians” in Florida Communication Journal. 


Dr. Berrin Beasley published “I Like Your Post: Ethical Challenges Associated with Online and Social Media Communication” in Media Ethics: Cases and Moral Reasoning. She also presented “Teaching Journalism History Online: Tips and Techniques for Success” to the American Journalism Historians Association convention, in St. Petersburg, Florida.


Dr. David Deeley presented a UNF case study on using students to produce sports content for ESPN3 as part of the panel “BEA Fast Break: Recruiting, Training, and Managing Student Crews” at the Sports Video Group: College Sports Summit in June. 


Dr. Christine Holland presented “Effective Task Design for Team-Based Learning” to the Florida Communication Association convention, in Orlando. 


Dr. Chunsik Lee presented “Bidirectional Effects of Celebrity Endorsement Advertising” to American Academy of Advertising convention, in Boston. 


Dr. Siho Nam published “North Korean Defectors, Talk Shows, Dialogue and Discourses: A Dialogue and Discourse Analysis on TV Talk Shows with North Korean Defectors in South Korea” in Journal of Korean Content Association. He also presented “Big Data as a New Economic Pageant: How the Discourse of Economic Growth Deepens Digital Inequality in South Korea” to the International Communication Association Preconference on Digital Inequalities and Discrimination in the Big Data Era, in San Diego. 


Dr. Jae Park and Dr. David Deeley published “Effect Differences of the FIFA World Cup between Official Sponsorships and Ambush Marketing” in Entertainment Review. 


Dr. Jae Park and Dr. Carolynn McMahan published “Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) and Online Marketing: Analysis of Social Media in Multinational Corporations” in Journal of Academy for Advancement of Business Research.  


Dr. John H. Parmelee, Dr. Berrin Beasley, Dr. Stephynie Perkins and Dr. Nataliya Roman presented “Gender and Generational Differences in Political Reporters’ Interactivity with Politicians and the Public on Twitter” to the European Political Science Association, in Milan.  


Dr. Nataliya Roman published “Information Wars: Eastern Ukraine Military Conflict Coverage in the Russian, Ukrainian and U.S. Newscasts” in International Communication Gazette. 


Dr. Margaret Stewart published “Fan Engagement via Social Media in American Minor League Soccer: A Case Study of Content and Analysis of Effective Practices” in the Journal of Digital and Social Media Marketing. She and Dr. Christa Arnold also published “Defining Social Listening: Recognizing an Emerging Dimension of Listening” in the International Journal of Listening, and “Improving Customer Relations with Social Listening: A Case Study of an American Academic Library” in International Journal of Customer Relationship Marketing and Management. Stewart also presented “Revisiting STREMII: An Application of Social Media Crisis Communication during Hurricane Matthew” to the International Crisis & Risk Communication Conference, in Orlando.  


Dr. Tulika Varma published “Nestle India in a Soup: Mapping Emotions to the use of Coping Strategies” in Journal of Marketing Development and Competitiveness. She also presented “Applying the Situational Crisis Communication Theory to Assess the Effectiveness of the Reputation Management Strategies after Data Security Breaches: A Multiple Case Study Analysis” to the International Conference on Journalism & Mass Communications, in Singapore. 


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Get involved


There are eight great ways to stay connected with the Department of Communication: 


1.     Join the department's Professional Advisory Board. The board helps us make sure we are getting students prepared for the current media environment. If you have risen to a position of leadership at a news organization, PR firm, advertising agency or other media outlet, please contact the department chair, John Parmelee. Even if you don't want to be on the board, feel free to email the chair with any advice on making the curriculum better.  


2.     Join the department's alumni association. This is a great chance to interact with fellow communication alumni and current students. To join, please contact the department's alumni association, mention your interest in joining and please include your name, contact information, year of graduation and track. Also, all communication alumni are invited to be a part of the conversation on Facebook. This is the “go-to” spot for UNF communication alumni. The Facebook group includes information about alumni social events, recently posted communication jobs, tech tips, departmental news and pictures/video from departmental events such as Media Week. In addition, communication faculty members have joined the group, so you can connect with your old professors. Here’s how to join the alumni Facebook group: Search for UNF Communication Alumni and ask to join.   


3.     Let faculty know how you're doing. Below is a link that lists faculty and their email addresses. Faculty love to hear what their former students are up to and are always happy to offer advice.


4.     Participate in the Internship Fair. Every spring, representatives from companies such as WJXT, The Florida Times-Union, United Way and Mayo Clinic meet with communication students to discuss upcoming internships and jobs. If you are a leader at a company that is looking for interns to do advertising, public relations, journalism or production, please contact professor Bobbi Doggett to participate.  


5.     Be a guest speaker. Your expertise in advertising, public relations, journalism or production could be a real benefit to current students. We are always looking for such guest speakers to come to communication classes. A good time to do this comes during the fall semester when the department hosts Media Week, an opportunity for media professionals to speak with students and faculty about the media landscape. Contact John Parmelee for more information.  


6.     Contribute to Alumni Notes. This is your chance to let faculty and fellow alumni know of any big career or personal changes in your life. Also, consider contributing a 300- to 500-word piece on which professors made the biggest impact on your career. Submissions will be published in the alumni newsletter. Contact John Parmelee to submit.  


7.     Donate to the department. Even a small gift can help us enhance our facilities, academics and recruiting of top-quality students and faculty. To contribute, please click here.


8.     Join us on Twitter and Facebook.  


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