Winona State University's Newspaper since 1919

The Winonan

Winona State University's Newspaper since 1919

The Winonan

Winona State University's Newspaper since 1919

The Winonan


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Mass Communications: The New Frontier – a new Graduate Program

Jacob Gifford
The Mass Communications department has a graduate program, which students from all over the country attend and take classes through.

The world is ever evolving when it comes to the field of communication. What were once paper notes on a community board are now digital notes that reach a worldwide community. As a result, the value of the Mass Communications major is increasing exponentially. The world continues to need people capable of getting a message to a large audience. After four years at Winona State any Mass Comm. Students would be ready to fulfill such a task. Though they would be working they may want to pursue a higher understanding in the field of Mass Comm. The new Graduate Program allows them to pursue that.

Strategic Communications is the new graduate program at Winona State. The 33 credit online program is dedicated to creating communicators dedicated to diversity, inclusion and equity. This makes it one of the first equity focused Strategic Communication graduate programs in the country. This program is not only for students straight out of their time here at Winona State.

Of the 23 students in the program, most were not graduates of Winona State and all are currently working with one being a vice president of communications at a non-profit and another working for a fortune 100 company.

Dr. Stacey Kanihan, the Director of the Graduate program shared her thoughts on it saying,

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“Our curriculum is outstanding. We are helping students solve not only organizational problems using communication but we are also helping students understand who they are as professional communicators.”

Kanihan would continue to explain how this program would go beyond what students learned in their time as Mass Comm. Students at Winona State. The undergraduate program taught students the fundamental theories, concepts and skills necessary to achieve a career in mass communications. The graduate program is intended to enhance the professional practice of those people working in the field. She explained how the program is open to anyone and is very flexible, allowing anyone from around the country to start during any semester. The program can be finished in as little as two years although students are able to take courses at their own pace at their own time with many choosing to take six credits per semester.

“When you start your adult life you don’t want to wait. You have an idea of what you want to do and you can go for it…our curriculum allows students to start at any time during the school year.” Kanihan said.

Kanihan emphasized how the unique focus of equity is an integral part of the graduate program and that characteristic makes it more valuable not only for the students participating in it but to a workforce that continues to embrace those aspects of society. The Mass Commu- nication department has prepared an open house information session, which will be held Oct. 5th from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m. in Phelps Hall 109. More information on the Strategic Communications program can be found at masscomm/graduate-program.asp

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About the Contributors
Jiovani Bermudez
Jiovani Bermudez, Photographer

Jiovani A. Bermudez is a photographer and features reporter for The Winonan as of late spring 2022. He is currently in his fourth year at Winona State University majoring in mass communication with a focus on creative digital media.

Besides photography for The Winonan, Bermudez is currently involved with the university's student radio KQAL as a production assistant and hosting "Jazz Cafe" on Fridays from 9 AM - 12 PM. He also a member of the Dev Team for Cubeify games.

In his free time, Bermudez enjoys playing a multitude of games, biking around Winona, writing, and engaging in discussion about poetry, philosophy, politics, mythology, and games.

Bermudez hopes to make games to share the stories he has written in his favorite medium of entertainment. He also hopes to put his efforts towards voice work.

Jacob Gifford
Jacob Gifford, Features Writer

Jacob Gifford (They/He) is a photographer and a features writer for the Winonan and started in fall 2023. Jacob is in his third year at Winona State and is studying Psychology with a minor in Philosophy and Women, Gender, and Sexuality studies.

Besides working for The Winonan, Jacob is also the Vice president of Philosophy Club at Winona State.

In his free time, Jacob enjoys hanging out with friends, longboarding, playing videogames, and writing and playing music. Jacob also enjoys going to concerts of local bands.

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