About the Department
The USU Journalism and Communication Department is one of the best professional programs in the western United States. Each year, JCOM students are recognized by the Society for Professional Journalists for their reporting, and public relations students win top honors in the annual state competition sponsored by Richter7. It is the only program in the state where students can get a degree in agricultural communications and journalism.
From the very first news writing class, students engage in intensive, hands-on reporting and writing projects, many of which are published in the campus paper The Utah Statesman, on Aggie television and radio, or in the university’s new student-run magazine Aggie BluePrint launched by JCOM majors in 2012. The program requires all print majors to spend a semester covering cops, courts and local government, and working as a news team publishing breaking news on the Hard News Café—an award-winning online news site.
Our faculty members are veteran journalists and experienced public relations professionals. They know their stuff. And they expect students to learn what it takes to make it as communications professionals. Faculty members help connect students to internships, lead study-abroad trips that provide students with global reporting experience, and provide the mentorship students need to develop their confidence and careers.
Beyond hands-on professional training in mass communication, JCOM majors also learn how to think critically within the rich context of a broad liberal arts education. That means our students are skilled media professionals who do their work thoughtfully, humanely, ethically and with an understanding of the impact, responsibilities, and implications of the mass media in today's society. JCOM majors graduate prepared with the flexibility to move across media platforms, applications and industries in a fast-changing marketplace.
The JCOM Department at USU believes the role of journalists and other communication and media professionals is defending the constitutional liberties outlined in the First Amendment and wielding those liberties responsibly in a society linked by information channels. The mission of the department is to prepare students to be informed, skilled, responsible and effective producers and consumers of journalism and other mass media messages, within the larger context of a broad liberal arts education.