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Welcome to the Wilson College Department of Communications! In these web pages you can learn all about the Communications major and minor at Wilson College, about our current faculty, and about the various organizations and activities sponsored by the department. Wilson College’s major in Communications balances critical thinking, media theory, and writing skills for use in both traditional media markets and today’s emerging digital media forms. Students will study the foundations of communications learning—i.e., journalistic writing, legal media issues, and media theory—and use that learning in traditional forms of media as well as online and digital media. In the process, students will create content for both print and digital publications and learn the fundamentals of marketing media and selling advertising. Students who graduate from Wilson with a degree in Communications will have an array of marketable skills, including learning AP Style, designing print and online media frames, crafting public relations and advertising for a variety of industry purposes, and mastering a wide array of technical and software skills for use on traditional and electronic media. Students will gain additional skills in computer programming, graphic and website design, photography, and marketing, all of which positions the Wilson graduate for success in both the workforce and in graduate school. Internships take place in local media markets and include exposure to both traditional and online forms of media. By the completion of the degree program students will be ready to tackle the ever-evolving world of new and digital media and still understand the foundations of traditional media forms and styles.
The Graphic Media concentration in Graphic Design focuses on a broader application of Graphic Design, combining courses in artistic content and creation with courses in traditional and social media writing and design. This generates the profile of a student who is very career-focused and, in many instances, may already be working in some capacity in the field. Students in this concentration will develop a foundational mixture of visual and written cultural abilities, and will be more well-rounded but less specialized than students majoring in either Graphic Arts or Communications. These students are mostly on the career track, and will be able to step into a wide variety of jobs that requires both artistic skills and writing content creation.
The Department also sponsors an annual Writers Series, houses the campus radio station, and often sponsors field trips to lectures, theater, conferences, and other events.
Since joining the Billboard staff, I have found that my writing skills have improved. You do not know how challenging it truly is to right in present tense constantly and not use any past tense. Editing is a major portion of Billboard, and for me, this is wonderful. I hope to be an editor some day soon, and this has helped me to further my own skills as an editor. To this day I am still improving my writing and editing skills by working on the campus newspaper. -Mallory Sunderland, BA ‘14Writing for The Billboard was my first experience ever writing for a newspaper. I had no idea what I needed to do, or that an article had to be formatted a certain way. Working there gave me a place where I could learn without judgment and become a writer. When I became one of the Editors-in-Chief my senior year, I took on a big challenge but I found something that again I loved to do. Things that seemed so small such as writing up a monthly story budget, editing articles or laying out pages in InDesign, became so important a year later. Also, I am still very proud of some of the pieces I wrote during my time in Billboard and I consider them great accomplishments that I still cite as some of my best writing. –Kayla Changon, BA '10
My time as Editor-in-chief of the Wilson Billboard not only enhanced my abilities as a creative writer, but also prepared me for the challenges I would face in the workforce. I learned how to collaborate with others of diverse background and skill, as well as the value of time management in the face of tight deadlines. My work with the Billboard helped me to realize my potential, and in turn I developed confidence and valuable leadership skills that will last a lifetime. –Kimberly Maske-Mertz, ’08, MA ’14, current Billboard co-advisor
From time to time the Department asks our majors to offer their words to potential students looking to become Wilson success stories like themselves. Here are just a few of their thoughts on a wide variety of subjects…
Through the liberal arts curriculum at Wilson, I learned to think in ways I never knew possible. The broad based curriculum helped me learn to make connections, not only between classes, but also in life. It’s amazing to discover that eighteenth century British literature has relevancy in today’s conversations. My time at Wilson has strengthened my writing skills immensely. The critical thinking skills I learned and honed at Wilson have been invaluable. I use the skills almost every day when making decisions at work.
-Courtney Wolfe, BA ’12, MA ‘15
During my time at Wilson, I have been able to reach outside of my comfort zone and mature into a young woman who is prepared and eager to join the ranks of professionals.
-Georgia Kalmoutis, BA ‘14
Wilson has made me a stronger individual. I have become far more outspoken and individualized now then I ever wars. Other than showing me that I have a passion for medieval literature, Wilson has shown me that I am more than just a face, I have a voice and am a talented individual.
-Mallory Sunderland, BA ‘14
When I came to Wilson, I never dreamed that I would be a journalist or even go to graduate school, but I found myself as a writer and found that my passion was journalism. If I did not go to Wilson, I probably would have never taken a journalism class and I would probably never have fallen in love with journalism. I also would not have found the professors that pushed me to try harder, to write well and to find myself. Without this guidance, I would have never believed that I could be attending one of the best graduate schools for journalism in the country and that I could succeed at what I love.
-Kayla Chagnon, BA ‘10
The English Department at Wilson College is truly a collection of scholars dedicated to their field. Each has their own focus that creates an atmosphere of variety in school and thought in the department despite the small department size. Each faculty member is personally committed to the success of their students, and willing to give 100% to every student committed to learning and growing. The faculty’s commitment to the liberal arts tradition is the inspiration for my decision to continue my studies in the liberal arts and it is their passion for teaching that made me capable of pursuing the next step in my education.
The reason I came to Wilson for my Associate Degree was its small class size, the reason I am continuing for my Bachelor Degree in Communications is the dedication and professionalism of the faculty in the department. Not only are the lectures interesting, assignments and tests are designed to facilitate learning with real world applications. I have yet to encounter a professor who is too busy to answer questions either during class, office hours or via email.
-Carol Zehosky, AA ’12, BA ‘15
The English Department faculty has been an inspiration and has assisted me in so many ways. I changed my major to English after meeting the professors in this department. They are friendly, reliable and always willing to go above and beyond to help their students. The knowledge they have in their specific fields is amazing and so insightful.
The faculty in the Department is undoubtedly the best aspect of the Department. More than anything, they wish to see you succeed and will go to great lengths to help you do so. They are always available and willing to help, as well as encouraging and approachable.
I am Adult Degree Student (ADP) majoring in Communications and a member of the Dram Club, Student Government (WCGA) Adult Degree Representative and member of the Student Philanthropy Council. My involvement with these organizations allows me to get to know and interact with both traditional and nontraditional students as well as faculty and staff outside the classroom setting. It is also a chance to use what I am learning in my classes to communicate my ideas and prepare for the next step in my career. These opportunities for involvement in campus life and the friendships I am making are adding a new dimension to my wonderful Wilson experience.
-Carol Zehosky, AA ’12, BA ‘15
My experience at Wilson has been the most fulfilling personal experience of my lifetime. Balancing full-time work and family can be challenging, but the rewards have been priceless for me. Not only have I learned and gained so much, I became a much better writer and student throughout my years at Wilson. Credits were transferred from other colleges I attended without any problems or issues. The benefit to my children as an adult learner has exemplified the importance of commitment, time management and the rewards for hard work. The example I have set for my children, I believe is one of the most positive and beneficial gifts I can give them. Many of the friendships I have made while attending Wilson to attain my BA will be life-long friendships. Others I have mentored, or, perhaps worked with on the school paper or even a class project, in particular, the younger students, helped me to better understand their thoughts, aspirations and goals. Understanding their goals has helped me to help my employer understand the needs of the current workforce to help retain young employees coming into the workforce. The Communications Department, in particular, was of great interest to me and I found the staff really cared about my success while creating a school environment with approachable professors, smaller class sizes for better learning and more discussion, rather than merely lectures to large classes of students. The class times fit my personal schedule very well and I was able to miss very few classes during the ten years I spend as a part-time learner at Wilson. I graduated in May 2008 and truly miss the learning environment at Wilson. It was a great way to make friends, benefit myself and family, and make a difference in the lives of others I've spent time with at the school.
-Alice Gudgeon BA ’08
Want to learn more about these and other Department graduates? Visit our “See What Our Graduates Are Up To” page to see what they did after graduation.
Department Course Catalog
Careers in Communications
Minor in Communications
See What Our Graduates Are Up ToAssessment Plan for Communications Majors
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