As we round out the final week of blogging and finish the week of our social media projects, I cannot help but reflect back on what I have learned and evaluate the Cronkite School’s PR program as a whole.
Although I am not graduating this year and do not want to pursue PR, I feel that the Cronkite school has done a pretty good job of trying to give students as much academic knowledge of their field as possible, while also trying to provide students with hands-on experience that will benefit them when they leave the doors of the institution.
Take for example the Twitter/FourSquare project that Dr. Gilpin had her JMC 417 and JMC 310 classes complete. As much as it was a pain to complete this without a Smartphone, I can see the value in learning how to use these tools. As Phillip Young said in his Mediations blogpost “The Future of PR Education,” it is impossible to do PR in this day and age without being online. He equivocated it to trying to do PR without people, and I can’t help but agree with his analogy.
Further looking into the thoughts on PR education, I came across a blog called leverwealth. One of its posts, titled “Colin Farrington bid farewell,” completely bashed the state of PR university programs by saying that…
PR degree courses are a mess. All too many are not much more than a course in spamming ‘press releases’ and having a ‘creative idea’ to fly a barrage balloon over the Houses of Parliament.
I think this couldn’t be farther from the truth when speaking about Cronkite PR classes. I don’t know about you, but I have typed Tweets and posted Retweets way more in the past week than I have written press releases.
Also on the topic of beneficial classroom assignments, I came across a blog called Journalistics by a NYU PR graduate student, Ashleigh Egan. In her post “Higher Education vs. Real-World Experience in PR,” she discusses the benefits of having a job in PR while in school to really grasp how some of the theories and ideas taught can be utilized. I thought she had a point. That is until I read…
Listening to a professor tell you how to interact with the media or compile a strategic communications plan is one thing, but it’s not the same thing as doing it yourself. One component to my degree, which I think should be included in all public relations programs, is to work with an actual company to develop a strategic communications plan.
My thoughts on this were the following: 1.) Duh! Why wouldn’t all programs have this as a course? 2.) You are a graduate student, and I am doing the same thing you are in one of my undergraduate classes.
I guess what I am trying to get at is I am very proud to be at the Cronkite school. Not only do we receive the traditional background of the field, but the faculty members are also making sure we are learning modern skills by developing them in hands-on environments.
So, what are your thoughts on the PR program? Any suggestions for improvements? Opinions on courses in general or assignments in particular?