Semester on Communications & Media


Communications & Media

The Semester on Communications and Media is offered every fall semester. Classes begin in late August and end in mid-December, and are held in New York City on Mondays and Wednesdays.

Applications are due by March 10.

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New York City is the media and communications capital of the world. From historic Madison Avenue to Silicon Alley, the city is home to an astonishingly wide array of U.S. and international broadcasting, cable, advertising, public relations, publishing, music, film, and digital media companies. From TriBeCa to the Upper East Side, firms both big and small disseminate the ideas, information, and stories that shape our culture and collective psyche, craft the messages that establish the identities of companies, organizations, products, and political candidates around the globe, and develop the new technologies that are changing the way we communicate.

The New York Semester on Communications and Media brings Drew University students into the heart of it all, to learn from professionals who work in the interconnected world of communications, public relations, advertising, and media, and to visit the places in which meaning is created, stories conveyed, and information consumed. In this semester, the student will take a critical look at the operations of New York City’s media and communications industry, critically examine the making of – and meaning behind – the messages, and the discuss ethical and moral issues at play. At the end of the semester, you will have a deep understanding of the role of media and communications within American culture, as well as an appreciation for topics and controversies affecting New York’s media and communications world.

Required Courses

ENGH/MCOM 386: Introduction to Media Industries
The course offers students an introduction to the critical perspectives that are central to the analysis of communication industries, including print, broadcast, new media, film, and sound-based media. The course will provide students with the skills to explain how and why media institutions emerge, sustain themselves, grow into monopolies, shift content priorities, and interact with both consumers and their own labor force. We will also look at the financial, ethical and regulatory structures that guide these industries. Given the focus of the semester, particular attention will be paid to media companies based in New York City.

ENGH/MCOM 387/New York Semester on Communications and Media Colloquium
This course studies the institutions and operations of advertising, communications, public relations and media and their roles in contemporary society. We will also explore the history and ethical dimensions of the principles and practices integral to media and communications. A key component of this course is the opportunity to delve into the practical, day-to-day operations of Madison Avenue, Silicon Alley, and related institutions located in New York City. Central to the program are talks by guest speakers drawn from the fields of advertising, communications, public relations and media. The class will also go on visits to advertising agencies, public relations firms, digital and traditional media organizations, etc. Speakers, field trips, and student projects explore contemporary communication issues, such as the concentration of media ownership and conglomeration, media literacy, the increasing democratization of the information environment, and changes in the media landscape.

To complete a full, sixteen-credit semester, you may enroll in courses normally offered on campus.