The SLMC Department prepares students for careers and advanced study in communication used for strategic purposes such as public relations and special event planning, advertising and sales, non-profit and for-profit management, law and policy, organizational training and development, corporate communications, government relations, entrepreneurship, human resources, marketing communications, and media management.
SLMC majors develop strong critical reasoning, writing and case development, verbal and nonverbal communication, problem solving, research design and implementation. Students become equipped with persuasive and informative methodologies to enhance the creation and development of messages in a variety of communication contexts including digital media.
The department offers an undergraduate degree (B.A.) as well as an undergraduate minor. SLMC focuses on three concentrations:
- Strategic Communication: Comprehensive communication across multiple platforms designed to reach target audiences. The Advertising sequence focuses developing persuasive messages designed to sell products, services, or ideas. The Public Relations sequence focuses on developing and sustaining beneficial relationships between an organization and its publics.
- Legal Communication: The study of legal and related issues in the field of communication such as constitutional privilege, statutory law and protected speech.
- Management Communication: This concentration focuses on effective communication used in managing in organizations. The Media Management sequence focuses on management and leadership issues in media enterprises. The Organizational Communication sequence explores human interaction within organizational contexts.
The SLMC Department was created by combining award-winning programs from Howard University’s two ACEJMC-accredited Departments of Journalism and Radio, Television and Film with the Department of Communication and Culture. The public relations program has been ranked as one of the top five programs in the U.S. by PR Week magazine. The advertising program has produced more African Americans in advertising than any other university in the world. The University’s first Marshall Scholar and the School of Communications’ first Fulbright Scholar were students in the organizational communication program. The legal communication program offers the endowed Richard Parsons Scholarship. Cox Media offers scholarships to students interested in media management and sales.
The SLMC Department is home to the student-run advertising and public relations agency, CapComm Lab; the NABEF Media Sales Institute funded by the National Association of Broadcasters Education Foundation; and the MLK Forensics Program with award-winning Mock Trial Debate and Parliamentary Debate teams. The Department also sponsors the Tom Burrell Chapter of the American Advertising Federation and D. Parke Gibson Chapter of the Public Relations Student Society of America.
The Public Relations sequence was recently ranked No. 5 in the nation by PR Week magazine. The Accrediting Council on Education in Journalism and Mass Communications (ACEJMC) accredits the department’s programs.
The Department offers financial support to selected number of continuing students. Students must apply in order to be eligible for scholarship.
SLMC faculty members are widely-published in their areas of expertise and some continue to work as professionals in their areas of expertise.