I’ve graduated…now what?

An outlook of employment opportunities in the mass communication industry

By Kyle J. Miller
Dr. Charles A. Lubbers
University of South Dakota


The employment outlook in any field is dictated by the balance of supply and demand. However, the available supply of college graduates and the demand for the graduates to fill a particular job category in a field can vary greatly.

Table1_DegreesAccording to a 2012 study by Becker, Vlad and Kalpen, 51,784 bachelor’s degrees were granted in the U.S. in 2011, and that number was only slightly larger than the year before.  They also noted that during 2011, 203,561 students were enrolled in bachelor’s programs, a decline of .05 percent from the year before.

Undergraduate students are studying a growing number of specializations within the mass communication field. This reflects changes in the terms used to describe the specializations, as well as a growth in those areas as a result of newer technologies.  As noted in Table 1, journalism, once the dominant specialization in the field, now accounts for slightly less than 30 percent of the students.  The next largest group of students is located in strategic communication programs. Students studying radio/television generally made up 4.9 percent.  Clearly the concentration of students is located in the areas of journalism and strategic communications, with significantly smaller numbers in the telecommunications field.

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Niche publications deliver something for everyone

By Jessica Clary
Savannah College of Art and Design Atlanta


-4By nature, all university publications are niche publications. The audience is typically hyper-local, similarly educated and knowledgeable about the same topics. A college newspaper article uses terms and vernacular specific to that college when describing traditions and nicknames.

College newspapers aren’t USA Today, and they shouldn’t be. They should be broad enough to deliver something for the entire campus population.

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Research: Student journalists’ use of student media

Sender-receiver, receiver-sender: A uses-and-gratifications study of student journalists’ use of social media

Vincent F. Filak
University of Wisconsin-Oshkosh


ResearchFilak

CLICK HERE TO DOWNLOAD RESEARCH PDF

Abstract: Uses and gratifications theory posits that audience members select media to satisfy specific needs. Social media, however, have allowed media users to select both media to consume and what media to produce/share.

This study of student journalists (n=285) revealed differences between the importance of specific gratifications in terms of what participants consumed and what they shared.

Vince Filak

Vince Filak

Additionally, the study examines which gratifications were most important in forming a positive attitude toward social media.

Being prepared when calamity strikes…

How College Media Can Plan For the Worst

By Carolyn Schurr Levin


In December 2012, College Media Review reported about the effects of Hurricane Sandy on the Pioneer at LIU Post on Long Island, and the College Voice at Mercer County Community College in New Jersey.  Both campuses shut down, students were sent home, power was lost for days and publishing the student newspapers was, to put it mildly, a challenge.

Coping with disaster... Long Island University and Mercer County Community College. Background photo Brian Birke, Creative Commons.

Disaster and emergency planning can help media prepare for the unexpected. (Background photo Brian Birke, Creative Commons).

In the case of the Pioneer, the outside printing company for the newspaper couldn’t have printed the paper even if it had had power; it lost its roof to the storm. The 2012 CMR article, “When Disaster Strikes A College Community,” advised college media organizations to make contingency plans in the event of an unanticipated catastrophe similar to Hurricane Sandy.

Yet, over a year later, an informal email survey of college media advisers suggests that many organizations do not yet have such contingency plans.

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Working with that sports Info director behind the curtain…

CMR_sports-info-athletics_directors

Alex Johnson, Cartoonist, UIS Journal

By Justin Schneewind

 Needing prior permission to interview college athletes and coaches has become the norm rather than the exception for college and professional sports journalists, who must often first go through the school’s sports information director or athletic director.

That goes for in-depth pieces and after-game interviews, in-person interviews, texts, e-mails, Facebook and other forms of communication.

Sports information directors, with the blessings of their athletic directors, are increasingly forbidding journalists to communicate with players or coaches unless the communication has been arranged first by the sports information director or other one of the sports information director’s staff.

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Assessment: More than just a dirty word

By Kay L. Colley

Texas Wesleyan University

College Media Review - 3 Advisors V3


Assessment: Just the mere mention of the word can send chills up and down the spine of any new or seasoned student media adviser. Whispered in hushed tones or thrown around as an expletive, this 10-letter word connotes educational balderdash, busywork and just plain wrong-headedness to many in the ranks of college media. But much like student media advisers are misunderstood by administrators, assessment is misunderstood by many student media advisers.

According to the National Academy for Academic Leadership, assessment is a process that describes the current situation of a person, program or unit providing evidence of this analysis. Assessment involves goals or outcomes, processes and inputs. Some assessment methods can include surveys, focus groups, portfolios and direct observation with multiple assessment methods being the preferred way to demonstrate meeting goals or outcomes. Continue reading

Review: “The Good Girls Revolt: How The Women of Newsweek Sued Their Bosses and Changed the Workplace” By Lynn Povich

Reviewed by Carolyn Schurr Levin


good-girls-revoltThe year 2012 was a big one for Newsweek.  After 79 years in print, the venerable newsmagazine published its last print issue on Dec. 31, 2012, transitioning to an all-digital format in early 2013.  The move reflected the challenges of a weekly publication in a world with a 24-hour news cycle, print advertising revenue declines and a growing online audience.  Perhaps as significantly as Newsweek’s digital transition, in late 2012, former Newsweek staffer Lynn Povich published The Good Girls Revolt: How the Women of Newsweek Sued Their Bosses and Changed the Workplace, her detailed chronicle of the 1970 lawsuit that she brought, along with 45 other women, charging the newsmagazine with discrimination in hiring and promoting women.  That lawsuit, Povich convincingly argues in her recent book, “has become a legacy for the young women who followed us.”

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Newspaper thefts, censorship efforts, roadblocks to public records and more: A Q&A with Frank LoMonte

Compiled by Susan Smith, media adviser at South Dakota State University


Illustration credit: Alexander Johnson, University of Illinois-Springfield.

Illustration credit: Alexander Johnson, University of Illinois-Springfield.

A record number of college newspapers were reported stolen in 2012, and while fewer have been stolen in 2013, such thefts continue, according to Frank LoMonte, executive director of the Student Press Law Center.

Meanwhile, Hazelwood was cited in a case where a college refused to allow a student to student teach because of his unorthodox views, and some universities are attempting roadblocks to limit access to records that should be open.

CMR asked LoMonte for his take on such situations. (Please see sidebar for additional resources).

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Dealing with Newspaper Thefts: Advice from the Student Press Law Center

Newspaper theft a form of censorship

Also, see Q&A on theft with SPLC Executive Director Frank LoMonte

Newspaper theft is a crime. It is also a terribly effective form of censorship. Each year dozens of student newspapers and other publications across the country fall victim to thieves whose intent is to prevent the dissemination of news, information and opinion with which they disagree.

While most college newspapers are distributed without charge (most student media have determined it would actually cost more to collect money at the point of distribution than it is worth), they are certainly not “free.”

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Training helps overcome beginning-of-semester hump

By Miriam Ascarelli, Kyle Huckins and Trisha Collopy


At Webster University in St. Louis, students at the school’s newspaper and Web site face a common challenge every year: getting new staffers up to speed and turning around the first content and print issue of WebsterJournal.com.

Image courtesy of NS Newsflash

Image courtesy of NS Newsflash

The students publish a back-to-school print edition and offer a new staff orientation in the same week.

“It’s a tough week for editors,” said Lawrence Baden, associate professor in Webster’s Communications and Journalism Department.