Mass Communications

Program Information

You live in a media-saturated society. There is hardly a moment in your day when you are not exposed to – and influenced by – mass media. Think about it: You wake up to the radio, dress in clothing that bears corporate logos, maybe read the newspaper or online news over coffee, check your email, listen to recorded music on your commute, chat on a cell phone through the day, and often spend your evenings watching television or reading a book or using the computer to play games, watch a DVD, instant-message friends, shop, blog, browse, and – oh yeah – study.

How does this relentless exposure to mass media shape you and the culture? How can you be a smarter media consumer and user?

Our Mass Communications Program builds media literacy for citizens in the Information Age, and prepares students for transfer into related four-year majors and entry-level positions in the communications industries. As a result, the program is both academic and vocational in nature.

Full Time Faculty

John J. Desjarlais is an award-winning screenwriter and novelist with professional experience in newspapers, magazines, book publishing, radio, video production, film scriptwriting, and public relations. A former producer at Wisconsin Public Radio with a B.A. in Radio/TV/Film from the University of Wisconsin-Madison, an M.A. in Media from Columbia University, and an M.A. in Writing from Illinois State University, he has been listed in Who’s Who in Entertainment, Who’s Who Among Emerging Leaders in America, Contemporary Authors, and Who’s Who Among America’s Teachers.


Students have found semester-long internships with local radio stations which have led to on-air hosting jobs in the field. Local program directors call us, asking for DJs, news stringers, and sportscasters.


There are two mass communication-related scholarships:

  • The Kaleidoscope Achievement Award is a tuition waiver granted to the editor-in-chief of the campus newspaper, good for one or two semesters.
  • The Arden Perry Journalism Award is a $500 scholarship awarded once a year in Spring to a qualifying student. Check the Financial Aid Office for details and an application.
    Sometimes the program has a budget for a student worker.

Additional Resources

Contact Information

John Desjarlais
Phone: 815-825-2086, ext. 2620
Office: A2201

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