The Communications program at Holy Family University has begun a transformation to provide more contemporary and creative degree options to students in our Communications and Media Arts program, while also updating its facilities with a more modern flair. The Mac Lab in Holy Family Hall is currently being renovated, with a dozen new Apple computers, carpeting, couches, and an 80-inch TV set to be installed.
Based on a report from Hanover Research, the Communications degree path will now be comprised of two tracks: Public Relations and Social and Emerging Media.
The Social and Emerging Media track will prepare students to expertly use social media, critically understand the media world, and create targeted media messages, according to Dr. Amanda McClain, Associate Professor of Communications. The Social and Emerging Media track will also integrate writing, production, and digital skills with a strong liberal arts education. The goals of the new program are to develop and refine creative messaging skills, to facilitate critical thinking, to acquire knowledge of digital innovations, and to engender competent and trustworthy media professionals.
“Communication is an ever-evolving field, and in order to offer the most contemporary industry and academic knowledge to students, our curriculum must adapt in tandem with the field,” McClain said. “Holy Family University wants to be creative, innovative, and on the cutting edge of new advances. We want to inhabit a specific niche that speaks to our strengths in terms of existing technology hardware, media trends, and faculty specializations, as well as the demands of the student population. We are updating our Communication curriculum by changing the name of one of our tracks, changing course titles, adding double major options, and adding and removing courses. In addition, we will offer a curriculum for students utilizing the Community Bridge, and plan to eventually offer an accelerated degree option.”
Two new courses have been added to the Communications curriculum: COMM 205 Producing Innovative Media and COMM 410 Social Media Analytics, which is a continuation of COMM 250 Social Media Strategy. COMM 335 Public Relations II has been renamed to Event Planning and Promotion. In conjunction with the newly launched Social Media minor that debuted last academic year, the Communications Department will also offer two online courses: COMM 115 Communication and Culture and COMM 202 Communication Theory, both of which fulfill general education requirements.