To study communication is to study the very nature of what it means to be human.
This was the message that faculty members and staff from the School of Journalism and Communication shared with its new cohort of students who are starting degrees in communication and media studies this week.
With continued growth in the Bachelor of Communication and Media Studies and steady demand for the Master’s and PhD Communication programs, the School has added several new faculty members in recent years and remains poised to continue delivering some of Canada’s best comprehensive programs in the field.
“We’re thrilled to see so many students choosing communication and media studies at Carleton,” said School Director, Josh Greenberg. “Year over year, as media become more deeply embedded in our lives and as jobs in communication continue to grow, we have seen increased interest in our programs from students across Canada and around the world.”
Earlier this week, Prof. Irena Knezevic, Undergraduate Supervisor, led a fast paced orientation session in the brightly lit atrium of Richcraft Hall for the nearly 280 new undergraduate students entering the first year of the Bachelor of Communication and Media Studies program.
“I love meeting new students and showcasing the School’s beautiful facilities,” she said. “We walked our students through some of the program’s fundamentals, such as what to expect in their first course, how to gain professional experience while completing their degrees, and how to become involved in their communities on and off campus. Our main goal was to paint a picture of what the program can do for them as students now, and as future professionals and engaged members of their communities.”
A small team of faculty and staff joined Prof. Knezevic to share words of advice, and reminded students of why now is such a great time to study communication and media. As Prof. Ira Wagman remarked, “media shape how we study, how we work, how we date, how we bank, and how we play. Our students not only consume media in all aspects of their lives but, increasingly, they produce much of it too. It’s important to remind them that every organization demands the type of expertise they will acquire in our program.”
The session ended with guided tours delivered by student leaders from the Communication Undergraduate Student Society.
COMS Program Welcomes New Graduate Students
Over in the recently renovated Readers Digest Resource Centre, Prof. Chris Russill, Graduate Supervisor, and Melanie Leblanc, Graduate Administrator, led an orientation session for the approximately twenty new students entering the Master’s and PhD programs in Communication.
The graduate orientation session addressed a wide range of issues, from TA responsibilities to key dates and timelines, grant proposal preparation, and support services available to students on campus. The session concluded with a ‘fun fact’ icebreaker activity. Students were tasked to strike up conversations with faculty to figure out which of them had a (not so secret) past in the entertainment industry; once worked at Loblaws teaching people how to use the Internet; got married in Las Vegas; played in a punk rock band; and spent a night in handcuffs at the Beijing International Airport.
“We have a terrific cohort of new grad students with really diverse backgrounds,” Prof. Russill explained. “They’re joining us from all across Canada, and while many of them have already completed degrees in communication, others join us from related programs in public policy, cultural studies, history and sociology. We’re excited to see how this diversity of background and perspective will shape our seminars.”
Sarah de Montigny is beginning her PhD in Communication at Carleton after completing her MA in Cultural Studies and Critical Theory at McMaster University, and a BA in History at Concordia. Asked why she chose Carleton for her degree, she specifically spoke of its interdisciplinary focus. “I like the fact that faculty come from diverse backgrounds and offer varied perspectives on the role of communication in our everyday lives. I was really impressed that the faculty at Carleton expressed genuine excitement about my research interests.”
The graduate orientation day ended with the annual welcome (back) reception hosted by the Communication Graduate Caucus at The Heart and Crown in Little Italy.
Classes began on September 5th.
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