Communicating in all the right ways
Our program enhances skills critical for success in today’s society – the ability to speak, think, and write effectively. Employers report that the most important skills they look for in employees are the abilities to work with a team and to communicate verbally.
We not only help prepare students to be good employees, but we also help them become effective citizens with successful social relationships.
What Will I Learn?
Students take courses that show how communication works in health, legal, political, organizational and social settings or courses that enhance skills in interviewing, argumentation and public speaking.
We also offer classes that focus on such topics as crisis communication, humor, deception, and persuasion. Majors can study gender issues, social movements, political campaigns, race relations, and interpersonal conflict in our courses.
Although we don’t have a formal internship program, many of our students end up serving in impressive internships because of their communication skills. Recent graduates have interned in DC on various political staffs, with Amnesty International, with nonprofit organizations in the state, and in on-campus offices. Moreover, our Capstone Experience class provides every student with an opportunity to work with a Hattiesburg nonprofit organization in bringing your understanding of communication studies to that organization, while also serving the community and seeing communication concepts at play in natural contexts.
The school offers several scholarships to majors. The Siltanen-Hosman scholarship and the Elliott and Bonnie Pood Communication Studies Scholarship are awarded to students who are outstanding students and involved in leadership activities.
The University Speaking Center is directed by one of our faculty members, Dr. Laura Stengrim. This nationally-recognized center focuses on helping students create strong presentations. Although the peer-tutors come from various majors, Communication Studies majors have traditionally made up the majority of the team. These tutoring positions not only provide you with the opportunity to help other students, but also test your understanding of various communication concepts continually.
Our faculty take the time to get to know students.
Whether we are working with students on class projects or honors theses, team projects or student groups, advising or chatting when we run into you on campus, we take the time to get to know our majors. All of the faculty in the department are active in research projects, balancing disciplinary leadership positions, and serving the university in important ways, but we’ll always find the time to help students.
Because all of our faculty are research active, it is not unusual for undergraduates to have the opportunity to work with our faculty on projects. Students have aided in collecting data in the field, have helped code data, have collected texts for analysis, and have helped with literature reviews. Additionally, several faculty work with students on Honors Theses and McNair Scholar projects, as well as student papers that are submitted to conferences for consideration.
- Sales and Management
- Nonprofit Work
- Human Relations
- Law School
- Katie Jack, 2003
Senior Advisor, Office of the Chief of Protocol, U.S. Department of State
- Paige LeBlanc, 2012
Admissions Counselor, University of Memphis Office of Admissions and Orientation
- Ed Pittman, 2011
Human Resources Manager, Hudson’s Bay Company
- Stacy Ahua, 2010
Program Coordinator, Extra Table (Mississippi nonprofit that raises money for food pantries)
- Tyrone Thomas, 2013
Program Analyst, Environmental Protection Agency
- Owen Terry, 2014
Associate Attorney, Thomas Law