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Multimedia Journalism and Mass Communication

Alicia Oken '13 is a social media associate at Revolution Messaging in Washington, D.C.  She majored in multimedia journalism, communication studies and political science at Augustana.

  • Careers/internships
  • About the program
  • What students say

Students go on to careers in journalism, public relations, advertising, promotions, and marketing. 

The Quad-Cities is an ideal setting for communications internships in multimedia journalism and mass communication (MJMC). There are two daily newspapers, four TV network affiliates and a PBS station. 

In this medium-sized media market, students are given opportunities they would not get in a larger market. Students have covered presidential visits, hosted local TV programs, and written front-page news stories.

The Quad Cities' proximity to Chicago also allows for big-city internships. Most recently, students have covered the Stanley Cup for WGN Radio, written blogs for the Arena Football League and coordinated celebrity visits for The Silverman Group.

Faculty mentors help students find internships. In recent years, all MJMC majors completed an internship.

Augustana offers a major and minor in multimedia journalism and mass communication.

The program offers the conceptual and hands-on skills to succeed in the 21st-century media environment.

Students tackle assignments that help equip them with the ability to tell stories across multiple platforms. They encounter the fundamental roles and purposes of journalism in democratic society, and the place of these roles in the age of blogs and social media. 

Outside the classroom, students are encouraged to think big. From working with members of Congress to hosting a weekly Spanish-language television program, students take what they learn in class and apply it to internships.

On campus, students hone their skills in a range of activities, including the award-winning Observer student newspaper, the student-run campus radio station WAUG, the on-campus NPR station WVIK, Augustana's Photo and Video Bureaus, the Entrepreneurial Edge Center, and Ads (Advertising Developers), Augustana's chapter of the American Advertising Federation.

The department is housed in Old Main, the central academic building on campus. The 1889 building underwent a $13 million renovation in 2013. Communication studies and multimedia journalism students take classes in a 20-computer multimedia Mac lab and benefit from other freshly updated spaces. Student media are clustered together on the same floor, with new, dedicated spaces for The Observer and WAUG.

Faculty offices are clustered nearby the classrooms and student media rooms, making informal interactions with students a central part of the department's atmosphere. Sitting areas for informal meetings and computer kiosks are interspersed among the offices and classrooms.

Alicia Oken '13, multimedia journalism and mass communication, communication studies, and political science:
"The practical skills that you learn in the MJMC program have definitely helped me the most after graduation. From learning how to use Final Cut Pro to writing for the Augustana Observer, I've been a step ahead after graduation because of the MJMC program. While you can learn how to craft a sentence in any college, the professors in this program make sure what you learn in the classroom can be applied to life after college. I've benefited a lot from learning how to use the different software and equipment. These skills are transferable no matter what work you decide to go into."

Brennan Casey ’14, multimedia journalism and mass communication and business:
"One of the best decisions I have made in my college career was declaring my MJMC major during my sophomore year. I have developed many important skills in my experiences both in and out of the classroom. My internship in the sports department at WQAD-TV gave me the opportunity to shoot and edit video, write scripts, and improve my interviewing techniques. As the sports editor of the Augustana Observer, I was able to improve both my writing and interviewing skills. I have always had an interest in broadcasting but it was not until I was given the opportunity to broadcast football, basketball, and baseball games for WAUG, the student radio station, that I realized sports broadcasting was a career I wanted to consider. I feel that the classes I have taken in the MJMC department as well as the opportunities I have had outside of the classroom have helped prepare me for life after college."

Observer wins record 19 Illinois College Press awards

The staff of the Augustana Observer broke its own record last weekend by winning 19 awards from the Illinois College Press Association (ICPA) in Chicago. Last year, the Observer staff won 18 awards from ICPA and took first place in the General Excellence category. The staff took third place in the same category at the awards banquet on Feb. 20. Other staff awards included an honorable mention in the category of front page design.

Cullen '13 wins Iowa journalism award

Jack Cullen '13 was awarded the Jay P. Wagner Prize for Young Journalists by the Iowa Newspaper Association. Cullen has been a Davenport Quad-City Times reporter since December 2013. Before joining the Times, Cullen was an intern at the Wisconsin State Journal in his hometown of Madison. He graduated from Augustana with a bachelor’s degree in multimedia journalism.

CBS intern enjoys crazy week at John Deere Classic

Jake Norcia ’16 is a multimedia journalism/mass communication major. He shares some thoughts from his summer internship, at WHBF-TV, the Quad Cities’ CBS affiliate. Norcia has covered high school baseball and softball and the Quad Cities River Bandits minor league baseball team. But most recently, he covered the John Deere Classic PGA golf tournament just east of Rock Island in Silvis, Ill.
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