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Timothy J. Brown, Ph.D.
Department Chair
Discover the Power of Communication

Welcome to the website of the Department of Communication Studies at West Chester University of Pennsylvania. Whether you are a current student, a prospective student, or just looking for more information about our department, you've come to the right place. Use the drop-down menus above for quick access to our site's content. If you are a student or faculty member, login to access additional content.

Communication is an essential part of human life. It affects how we relate to each other, how we achieve success, and how we view reality. It has shaped the world we live in, and it will shape the world ahead. We invite you to discover the power of communication. Contact us today, and discover how the Department of Communication Studies at West Chester University can be a part of your future.

Department News

Alumni of our Graduate Program: Your Feedback, Please

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Hello COM Studies M.A. Alums!

I hope your summer is going well. As some of you who are recent graduates may recall, I announced in the grad department newsletter that I wanted feedback from you about your experiences in our graduate program. Whereas we have much to be proud of, there’s always room for improvement. Therefore, I hope you can attend one of the following upcoming opportunities.

I would like to invite you to participate in a focus group on 7/19 at 7 p.m.. Please come and share your ideas. The session will be held in Main Hall, Room 132. I expect the session will run about an hour or so – it depends on how many people attend and how much you have to say! Although I have separate sessions lined up for incoming and current students, I wanted to have a separate session planned for alums simply because you have a different experience, having completed our program.

COM Class Proposals Have Community Impact

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For the thirteen West Chester University students in Dr. Lisa Millhous’ Communication Seminar on Leadership and Teambuilding, June 24th is not just the end of the first summer session. After struggling with issues of leadership and teambuilding all term, the end only marks the beginning of a new challenge: actually using the ideas from the course to make a difference in their group experiences.

Collectively, participants in the class wrote 16 proposals that, if implemented, would personally impact an estimated 300 individuals, while the messages generated by these efforts would potentially reach 2000 or more people. Students were instructed to focus on groups where they had access or could make an impact. Although a proposal is not always implemented the way it was conceived, “sometimes just interviewing members of the group and planting the idea is enough to change the group or move it in a different direction,” reports Dr. Millhous, the instructor of the course.

Graduating senior Amber Hawkins felt that her group’s proposal “is realistic for our target community – to see our community come together and bond using this idea would be an amazing thing!” Fellow group-member Brian Young had similar feelings: “Our group’s idea was quite simple, but I can see that it has incredible potential to help the organization reach out to the people who could benefit.”

Senior Reception 2011

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Every year, the Department of Communication Studies host a special reception for our graduating seniors. This year the reception was held on May 5 at the Landmark Americana in West Chester. The theme for this year's senior reception was "Oh the Places You'll Go." Everyone enjoyed great food and refreshment, and many lucky students won gift cards and other prizes donated by local businesses. A great time was had by all!

Click here or on the image at left to view a gallery of photos taken at the event. Click on any thumbnail on the gallery page to view a larger version of each image. You can also see the photos on our Department's Facebook page.

Communication Studies Major Wins National Speech Award

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Sara Franklin, a senior communication studies major from Mechanicsburg, PA, captured the Sixth Place Award at the 2011 Interstate Oratorical Contest (IOC) at James Madison University in Harrisonburg Virginia. Begun in 1874, The IOC is the oldest continuously running national intercollegiate speech contest in the country. Earning a bid to attend this tournament is a prestigious honor. Each year the Interstate Oratorical Association issues invitations to only the top two collegiate persuasive speakers from each state.

Franklin joins a long, rich history of orators who have gone on to make significant contributions to our nation. Those orators include Wisconsin Senator Robert La Follette, who was a founding member of the modern Republican Party; South Dakota Senator George McGovern, who was the Democratic nominee for the US Presidency in 1972; and Vernon Jordan, former Executive Director of the National Urban League.

Franklin’s speech on cleaning up hydraulic fracturing, the process for extracting gas and oil from shale, will be published in Winning Orations later this year.

West Chester Community Television goes online: Check out some of our shows!

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Communication Studies students have been hard at work creating content for a new video production venture: West Chester Community Television (WCCT). During the Spring semester we have created three shows all shot and edited by students working with Prof. Michael Boyle and graduate student Amy Kaminsky. Coaches Corner features interviews with coaches and players from WCU athletic teams and is hosted by Prof. Boyle. WCU Live is a sports talk show featuring sports reporters from WCUR and The QUAD that is hosted by Communication Studies major Steven Fisher. Both shows are recorded at our campus television studio in Brandywine Hall. The Last Lecture Series features in-depth looks at many of WCU's distinguished professors and was created by Amy Kaminsky as part of an independent study in Fall 2010. The Web site will also feature content from campus activities and events. We'll also air our content on WCUTV5 - the campus television station (Channel #965 if you live on campus).

Watch WCCT online: http://communication.wcupa.edu/users/wcct/

Check us out and check back frequently as we add new content!

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