Balancing academics with new media – Communication & New Media Major Highlight

Photo by Megan Hartman

By: Chelsea Sydnor

The Department of Communication & New Media at Gardner-Webb offers numerous majors of concentration, including:  Graphic Design, Video/ Film, Photography and Public Relations. Options also include Journalism with a focus in News-Editorial, Photojournalism and Broadcast.

“Majoring in Communication & New Media helps students learn to research by asking questions and digging to find information,” said Dr. Bob Carey, chair of the department for almost 13 years. “All of the concentrations are about storytelling.”

According to Carey, the program courses prepare students for jobs in the real world, in that they will be prepared to research and “cut to the chase.”

A banner display of the sub-majors offered in the Communication Studies Hall. Photo by Megan Hartman

A banner display of the sub-majors offered in the Communication Studies Hall.
Photo by Megan Hartman

Senior Liv LuVisi, a Broadcasting major, explained that the department is very well-rounded. “I have the opportunity to gain experience in graphic design, public relations and videography,” said LuVisi. She also enjoys having access to the radio station on campus.

However, LuVisi also feels that not many of her classes have been specifically focused on her concentration.

“There aren’t a lot of broadcast journalism-focused classes, aside from Announcing and Audio Production,” she said. “It would be nice to have some more courses added to the curriculum that focus more on radio or broadcasting.”

Kimberly Johnston is a senior majoring in Video and Film and hopes to one day become a producer.

“The creative process is the best part of my major,” said Johnston. “There are so many great programs to edit and film.

However, Johnston also believes there are drawbacks to Video and Film careers. “Editing is time-consuming,” she explained. “The equipment can also be expensive, and you never know for sure if it will be right for you.”

Senior Matt Johnson is majoring in Journalism-Editing, and feels that journalism provides students the chance to meet people from all around campus in order to tell stories of success.

“[The professors] are great and will work with students that do not understand,” said Johnson. “They will help you learn how news reporting and editing really works.”

Dr. Carey also believes that the faculty is one of the best things about the department.

A student walks the ramp to enter into the Communication Studies Hall. Photo by Megan Hartman

A student walks the ramp to enter into the Communication Studies Hall.
Photo by Megan Hartman

“They are all very creative, yet independent in their fields,” he said. “I can count on them to work with their students as best as they can.”

According to Carey, his own intention, as well as that of the department as whole, is to prepare students for jobs in companies that are looking for employees that understand new media.

“We try to balance excellent academics with cutting-edge technology that will push students forward,” he said.

Meanwhile, the department aims to follow Gardner-Webb’s model in helping students with their personal and spiritual lives as well.

“We want to mentor students and see how they are changing in other aspects of their lives, not only the academic one,” said Carey.

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