Welcome to the Fall 2014 semester!

I really am beside myself with excitement about the start of the new semester! I love the promise the start of each semester brings. It’s like New Year’s Day, but better.

This semester I am particularly excited about the courses I’m teaching. In COMM 135 – Principles of Public Relations, we study more broadly the field of public relations and students learn about the public relations function through our readings, guest lectures, in-class discussions, and hands-on work. Public relations is all around us, and we all have to engage in our own public relations as we develop our professional lives, in particular. So, even if students have no desire to pursue a professional career in public relations, there are other personal and professional benefits that accrue to students in the class, not the least of which is learning how to be a more critical media consumer.  However, for students wanting to pursue a career as a professional communicator, this is a great jumping off point into the field of public relations.

COMM 193A/293A – Social Media for Public Relations is an ever-evolving class as we learn about the new developments in social media and consider how we, as communicators, can more effectively use these platforms to most effectively reach our communication objectives. This class is exciting because it often resembles trying to shoot at a moving target. However, while the platforms continue to change and evolve, thinking about effective messaging and audience analysis — in other words, strategy — is something that does not change as quickly. Therefore, this class is exciting because we can consider new technological platforms while also being mindful of the tenets of effective communication and public relations that should guide the application of these platforms.

It’s going to be an exciting semester and I look forward to working with new and returning students at the University of the Pacific!

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