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Public Relations

PRSSA trip to Washington, D.C.

PRSSA trip to Washington, D.C.

No. 3 Best Creative and Media Jobs of 2020

-- U.S. News & World Report

Welcome to the Texas State University School of Journalism and Mass Communication (SJMC) Public Relations program. This program is designed to ensure our graduates understand and can thrive in the ever-changing, globalized communication environment. Faculty challenge PR students to understand strategic communication, research, critical thinking, creativity and innovation to solve problems and meet goals.

With the explosion of digital media, the role of Public Relations is ever expanding, requiring organizations to reach diverse publics by communicating across a variety of channels and platforms. Our students understand the need to create connections and engage with stakeholders to build mutually beneficial relationships.

In the end, our graduates research, write, plan, think, build, create, strategize, engage and evaluate. They are inquisitive, innovative, creative, bold, versatile and passionate. They understand the importance of ethical and credible communication. They are ready to be the next generation of public relations professionals of the highest standards.

Explore the degree options, courses, faculty and more on this site to appreciate Texas State offerings for those considering the field of public relations.

Required Courses (40 hours)

MC Core (9 hours): MC 1301-Introduction to Mass Communication MC 4301-Media Law and Ethics MC 4381-Fundamentals of Digital and Online Media.

  • MC 3343-Introduction to Public Relations
  • MC 3313-Foundations of Public Relations Writing
  • MC 3314-Social Media for Strategic Communication
  • MC 3360-Public Relations Research
  • MC 4313-Advanced Writing for Public Relations
  • MC 4320-Public Relations Campaigns

Students must also take(13 hours):

12 advanced hours (4 courses) in any area of Mass Communication
1 hour from: MC 2111-Media Practicum, MC 4130-Internship, MC1100A-Z

All students must earn a “C” or higher in each of three core courses in Mass Communication, which include: 

  • MC 1301
  • MC 4301
  • MC 4381 

Students must earn a “C” or higher in all prerequisite courses in the courses below:

  • MC 3343-Introduction to Public Relations
  • MC 3313-Foundations of Public Relations Writing
  • MC 3314-Social Media for Strategic Communication 
  • MC 3360-Public Relations Research
  • MC 4313-Advanced Writing for Public Relations 
  • MC 4320-Public Relations Campaigns 

Concentrations

Concentrations focus on specific areas and provide skillsets designed to serve today’s evolving public relations profession. Students who elect a concentration apply the 9-hour concentration toward the 12 hours of advanced mass communication electives required of the B.S. degree.

Sports Media concentration (9 hours)
Required course: MC 4329-Sports Media
Choose two courses from: MC 4330-Internship, MC 4331-Strategic Sports Communication, MC 4357-Sports as News

Careers in Public Relations

The current job market for public relations professionals is healthy. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics estimates employment of public relations specialists to grow 12 percent by 2022. If all jobs are included that require PR skills but don’t include “public relations” in the title, the growth is much higher.

Below is a list of titles by entry-level, midcareer and senior-level job descriptions. Job seekers should check out the PRSA Jobcenter for more resources: http://www.prsa.org/JobCenter.

Entry level titles: “Intern,” “Specialist,” “Coordinator,” and “Associate,” among others, combined with these terms:

Communications / Public Relations / Digital Marketing / Media / Social Media Marketing Communications / Digital Communications / Community Relations / Integrated Marketing Communications / Writer / Visual Communications / Outreach / Public Information / Public Affairs

Mid-career titles: “Director,” “Manager,” “Strategist,” “Analyst,” “Supervisor,” “Senior…,” and “Assistant Director,” among others, combined with these terms:

Public Relations / Corporate Communications / Strategic Communications / Digital Communications / Public Affairs / Internal Communications / Content Management / Community Relations / Development / Employee Communications / Marketing Communications / Media Relations / Media Affairs / Copywriter / Content Manager / Social Media / Digital Media / Government Relations / Speechwriter / Integrated Marketing Communications / Video Communications / Grants and Communications / Public Information / External Communication / Content Producer and Writer

Senior-level titles: “Vice-President,” “Executive,” “Chief,” among others, combined with these terms:

Communications / Public Relations / Brand Communications / Investor Relations / Speechwriter / Strategic Communications

PR Agency titles: Intern, Assistant Account Executive, Account Executive, Senior Account Executive, Account Supervisor, Account Director, Managing Director, Senior Managing Director, Vice-President, Owner and Founder

Internships & Campus Media

Public Relations majors are encouraged to seek internships but are not required to do so. The school’s internship coordinator maintains relationships with employers offering internships and provides guidance in seeking internships.

Campus media outlets also provide valuable practical experience. Students may work at campus media outlets Bobcat Promotions, The University Star and KTSW-FM 89.9 radio on a volunteer basis, for course credit or as a student media employee.


Public Relations Faculty:

Jennifer
Scharlach

Jennifer Scharlach
Assistant Professor of Practice & Program Coordinator

Judy
Oskam

Judy Oskam
Director of the School of Journalism and Mass Communication

Michelle
Dickens

Michelle Dickens
Lecturer

Michel
Haigh

Michel Haigh
Professor and Graduate Advisor

Nicole Hengst-
Thompson

Nicole Hengst
Senior Lecturer

Chuck
Kaufman

Chuck Kaufman
Senior Lecturer

Courtney Lyons-Garcia

Courtney Lyons-Garcia
Part-Time Lecturer

Prisca
Ngondo

Prisca Ngondo
Assistant Professor

Debra
 Price

Debra Price
Senior Lecturer

Paul
Villagran

Paul Villagran
Assistant Professor of Practice

Olga
Wilson

Olga Wilson
D.D. Hachar Program Coordinator, Equity and Inclusion Representative