Convocation May 2013 Video Launched

MA grad May 2013It’s here! The COMM class of 2013, and all of your family and friends can relive each and every second of their recent convocation ceremony in the Trabant Student Center through this video. We’re so pround of all of you and wish you all the very best on your journeys after UD.


Please stay in touch, and keep us posted about your adventures!

Heathcare PR the “Ticket” for Young COMM Major

Madeline Brooks, ’15

Madeline is Astra Zeneca's superstar intern!

Madeline is Astra Zeneca’s        superstar intern!

Early last December, in the midst of finals panic, I received an email from my Intro to Public Relations professor, Professor Bartoo. She recommended that I and a handful of her other students apply for an internship with the AstraZeneca HealthCare Foundation, a nonprofit foundation that promotes public awareness of healthcare issues. It was my dream internship to do communications work for a health-related organization. The position, however, was competitive, and looked for an upperclassman student to apply. I assumed I had little chance of getting it. But, after I submitted my resume, I nearly fell out my chair when I received a call from the Foundation to answer a few preliminary questions. The Foundation asked me to come in for an interview, and to my excitement, they hired me that week.

My internship with the AstraZeneca HealthCare Foundation teaches me countless new skills, as well as keeps me on my toes. In January and February, I organized schedules for our grant announcement events and coordinated travel logistics. In March, I learned about measuring media hits and saw the process of creating an annual report. Now, I am receiving a crash course in media pitching, as I create charts of media market outlets and compile patient stories to use in pitching article ideas.

My internship has given me invaluable insight into the inner workings of communications for a nonprofit organization. I’ve seen the behind-the-scenes effort that goes into simple briefing documents or detailed communication strategies. We hold ourselves to high standards in our communications, because every project we work on contributes to the “big picture” for the Foundation. So much of our growth is based on communicating the results of the Foundation’s good work, and I am proud to help with this.

When I reflect on the freshman who didn’t even know how Twitter worked, to the sophomore with an internship and career goals, this progression is thanks to PRSSA and the UD Communication Department. Until I applied for the internship, I took for granted the public relations and job-searching skills I learned through PRSSA. At our meetings and skill slams I learned how to use hashtags, craft the perfect resume, and even write a professional thank-you note. My Intro to Public Relations class taught me that textbook knowledge means nothing without a savvy understanding of “real-world” PR. I would not have an internship if it were not for the experience I received through PRSSA and the guidance of my COMM professors.

One of the best parts of PRSSA is the face-to-face networking. I’ve always been shy, though not as much as prior to PRSSA. I still remember how incredulous I felt that members of the PRSSA executive board talked to me, a freshman, and remembered not only my name, but my career aspirations. It feels great to be part of an organization that actively cheers you on in your professional development. Because of my interactions with other members, I didn’t feel nervous when it came to interviewing with the Executive Director of the Foundation or discussing ideas with my experienced coworkers. PRSSA gave me confidence as a professional and as an individual.

I’m looking forward to spending the summer and beyond with the AstraZeneca HealthCare Foundation. The UD Communication Department and PRSSA will continue to help me take advantage of everything I learn during my internship, and through the next chapter of my career.

Disclosure: I am a contractor working for the AstraZeneca HealthCare Foundation.  This blog post and the opinions in it do not reflect those of my employer’s and are not made as any endorsement in my capacity as a contractor for the AstraZeneca HealthCare Foundation.

Cool Stuff Still Happening in UD COMM Dept in 2012

It’s election time and UD’s Center for Political Communication (CPC) will host a late-night election watch party at the good ‘ole Trabant Center TONIGHT. Were you there for the 2008 Election Watch? Follow activities tonight through the Twitter hashtag #ElectionCentral. We had 200o students for the last national election and we think there will be a ton of free UD Creamery “Stars and Stripes” custom-made ice cream eaten by the huge crowd gathered to watch the numbers roll in.

Our own Dr. Jenny Lambe and Dr. Paul Brewer, both in the COMM Department and the CPC are quoted here discussing the university’s National Agenda poll.  It seems that since the Citizens United 2010 supreme court ruling, most Americans favor limited corporate money in our election process.

Think there’s something “funny” about elections? Well, Danna Young and Lindsay Hoffman, both assistant COMM professors recently shared their views about the impact of political humor in a high energy and thought-provoking 30-minute WVUD 91.3 FM radio interview.

Young and Hoffman had a lot of fun talking about a wide range of topics about the current campaign–and past campaigns–including the place of satirists like Stewart and Colbert, the importance of voters watching the debates and candidates’ speeches, twitter and other new media, and each campaign’s attempts  to win the “battle for truth.” Listen to the free WVUD audio podcast through iTunes ( it’s from the 10/25/12 episode) .

The Center for Political Communication has again hosted multiple Delaware election debates with great audience turn out from both students and the Delaware community.

We’re very proud of Dr. Juliette Dee, who has the lead piece in the latest issue of Communication Currents.  The issue is focused in honor of Free Speech Week and her article summarizes the Supreme Court’s rulings regarding freedom of expression last term.


The COMM Fab Four

Thanks to Dr. Nancy Signorielli , WVUD’s own Steve Kramark, COMM MA ’12, and current COMM graduate students Chris Chris Volker COMM ’12 and Colin Kearney for representing our department at the golf fundraiser for the Megan Ashley Perry scholarship fund!  Looking sharp!



Stanford University’s Baba Shiv with UD COMM honor student Shantel Campbell.

One of our current undergraduate students, Shantel Campbell, COMM ’13, presented her academic research on the affect of scarcity of time and resources on buyer behavior at the Leadership Alliance National Symposium (LANS) at the Hartford Marriott Downtown in Hartford, Conn., earlier this year.


Campbell, majoring in mass communication with a minor in advertising,  is involved in the prestigious UD Honors Program. Very few students nation wide qualify to conduct research at the undergraduate level. Bravo!


Communication and the arts: Two passions that fuel my life

Bobby Schrader,  UD COMM ’13

Bobby Schrader, PR intern, at Boston’s Museum of Fine Arts

If you told me a year ago that one day, I would be walking past some of the most beautiful pieces of fine art in the world, I wouldn’t have believed you.

But that is exactly what I did this past summer.

From late May to the middle of August, I interned with the public relations department at the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston (MFA). Walking past works by Renoir, Sargent and Van Gogh became part of my daily routine, and soon, I was showing all of my friends around the museum. As an advocate for and participant in the arts, I found myself very much at home.

During my shifts at the MFA, I updated the department’s college media list, researched local high teas for a new afternoon tea program, escorted media throughout the museum and wrote pitches and suggested social media tactics to promote the museum’s restaurants and executive chef.

I also had the chance to assist with the MFA’s first ever social media contest, Grandstand to Gallery. The MFA collaborated with the Boston Red Sox for their 100th season in an exhibition where pictures of Fenway Park were collected and voted on through social media. I assisted the department in the winners’ reception, where I helped coordinate pictures with the MFA photographer and interacted with media.

Throughout my time at the MFA, I learned about the value of media relations in a museum setting and how to communicate internally with the entire staff.

At UD, I participate in two performing arts organizations. I sing with the MelUDees Coed A cappella group and I am a brother of Phi Mu Alpha Sinfonia Men’s Music Fraternity. I hold communication and public relations positions in both organizations. I find that my passion for effective and strategic communication stems from my love of the arts and its ability to send a message to various audiences. Getting the right message to the right people is important, and I believe that public relations professionals should strive to make sure that their messages reach their audiences in new and exciting ways. An organization’s core audience deserves to know what is happening within the organization, and an untapped, but potential new audience deserves to hear the message. I enjoy promoting the arts because it, in turn, promotes the artist’s message and the expression of their work.

My involvement with the Public Relations Student Society of America (PRSSA) on campus provides me with the opportunity to learn about and practice the craft of communicating for an organization. As the public relations director, I leverage social media for purposes of communicating to our members. As a general executive board member, I advocate for our mission. I advocate for communication as a noble field that strives to get truthful information out to the public.

I am truly grateful for all of the experiences I’ve had during my college career because they’ve taught me about myself. They have taught me the skills I need to practice the craft of communication and public relations in the most effective manner. Although I will be sad to leave UD in May, I am excited to start a career where I can continue fueling my passions.

Voting for Romney, Obama or . . . . YoUDee?

Political talk on TV hits a fever pitch this fall as the national elections approaches.  The Center for Political Communication AGAIN hosts prestigious speakers who dissect national and regional political issues, and then fold them into insightful media analysis. It’s happening many Wednesday nights right here in little ol’ Newark in the National Agenda Speaker Series

Karl Rove, David Plouffe, Steve Schmidt or Robert Gibbbs take a break from the little stage of Meet the Press and head to UD’s Mitchell Hall or the Bob this fall to call ’em like they see ’em.

Join us for any of these free and open to the public events, or check out the podcasts of these and all the National Agenda VIPs.