New programs bring new opportunities

Paige Thompson, Managing Editor

With a new semester comes new classes for students. This semester at IU Southeast brings a number of new opportunities for students.

One major change this semester is a public relations track in the School of Social Sciences. Jane Dailey, visiting assistant professor of journalism specializing in public relations, has come from Ohio to help build the new program.

With 15 plus years of experience in public relations, Dailey began teaching in 2007 at a small college in Ohio.

“I started out doing public relations. More specifically I was a public information officer for the Ohio Environmental Protection Agency. I handled both media relations and public involvement and then after that I went to work for a private consulting firm,” Dailey said.

“It was an engineering firm that also did environmental work so there I did a mix of government relations and media relations, all under the broader area of public relations.”

Dailey, who holds a Ph. D. in mass communications from Louisiana State University, hopes that the new program will help students who have an interest in public relations.

“I would like to be able to take the program that exists now and build on that and build into the core PR courses so that students have an expanded opportunity as journalism majors or communications majors to be able to pick up PR and develop some of those skills,” she said.

Dailey also said that the new program will give students problem-solving skills and different opportunities to learn new contemporary communications strategies.

“There are a lot of different technologies out there and different ways to communicate and reach people so that would be an expectation of what students would learn in this program,” she said.

Dailey hopes to bring a student-run agency to the IUS campus, to give students an opportunity to gain real-world experience in the industry while working with community organizations.

“Also, the opportunity to work with real clients while they learn PR, so even in some of the courses having an opportunity to take what they’re doing and apply it to a real-world situation and come out of there with something that will help them show that experience when they go out to get that job,” she said.

Adam Maksl, assistant professor of journalism, also hopes that the new PR program will bring a student-run public relations agency.

“Students going into the PR track will learn social media strategies, journalism and reporting strategies that give them valuable skills for PR practitioners, and real-world experiences that will be valuable when applying for internships and jobs,” Maksl said.

Dailey, who was the faculty advisor for the Public Relations Student Society of America chapter at Marietta College in Ohio, hopes to build a chapter at IU Southeast.

“I think there’s a great opportunity here and that’s why I’m excited about being here and being a part of the program, because you’ve already got this really strong journalism program and then to be able to build upon what is already here,” Dailey said.

One thing Dailey wants students to remember about public relations is that there are a variety of opportunities available in the industry.

“You don’t have to go work for agencies. You can go and work for big companies, but you can also work at different organizations that need PR skills, so that opens you up to a lot of different opportunities,” she said.

“They have to be able to write, they have to be able to speak, they have to be able to come up with good strategies to be able to reach different audiences.”

According to Angela Salas, assistant vice chancellor for academic affairs, there are a number of new majors, minors, graduate certificates and post-baccalaureate certificates open to students for this and future semesters.

Students can talk to an academic adviser or faculty for more information.

New Majors:

  • Public relations

  • Public service & public policy

  • Informatics cognate

  • International relations

  • BFA concentration in digital art and interactive media

  • BS in music with concentration in audio productions

  • Concentrations in music education with two tracks: 1 in vocal/general music K-12

  • Instrumental/general music K-12

New Minors:

  • Marketing

  • Professional selling

  • Secondary education licensing

  • Creative writing

  • Professional writing

  • Journalism

  • Multimedia journalism

  • Sustainability

Information provided by Angela Salas.