Communication Majors’ Night prepares students for new opportunities

September 16, 2013

By: Savannah Jones

Faculty and students of the Slane College of Communications and Fine Arts gathered in the Student Center Ballroom Wednesday September 10 to celebrate Communication Majors’ Night. After munching on snacks, students settled down at their assigned tables marked for their specific major. Slane Chairperson Paul Gullifor congratulated students for making the “greatest” decision of their lives, majoring in communications.

“That is not a four-year decision but a 40-year decision,” Gullifor said.

Gullifor welcomed two esteemed visitors to Peoria from Zhengjiang University in China, Dr. Tao Lee and Dr. Li Jie.  The visitors met to discuss study abroad and exchange opportunities between faculty and students at Bradley and their university.  Quan Xie, a new faculty member in the Department of Communication, arranged for the visit and served as translator.

Bradley alumna and Change Management Supervisor at Caterpillar Inc. Faith Gray ‘10 was the keynote speaker. Gray explained how students could stand out in the corporate world beginning a student at Bradley. She advised students to first figure out their strengths because “it is critical to the rest of your life.”  Second, foster those strengths by choosing classes that focus on those skills. Third, continue to improve your skills; work as hard as possible in class and “earn your grade.” Fourth, pick a career based on what is important to you and finally apply yourself once you get that job.

“Once you get that job, apply yourself and shine,” Gray said. “What matters is your attitude.”

Freshman public relations major Annie Schuver said Gray made her realize she could start preparing for a career during her first year of college.

“She gave me a feel for what I need to do to make my education at Bradley translate into a job,” Schuver said. “It was a good reminder that my resume starts now.”

“She definitely knew her audience and was prepared to prepare us,” freshman academic exploration major Charlie Barchett said.

Associate Dean BJ Lawrence spoke about the opportunities awaiting Bradley students at The Hollywood Semester where students can spend a semester taking classes and gaining practical experience in the entertainment industry while earning credits.

Student organization booths outlined the room and provided communication majors new ways to become involved in the department.

“Leadership is the buzzword among employers today and where do we get that leadership? These programs all around you,” Gullifor said.

Organizations like Student Senate, The Speech Team and Bradley University Communication Alumni Network were represented.

Though many freshmen communication majors are just beginning their journey, Communication Majors’ Night gave them a glimpse of what their successful future will look like. Bradley communication majors are in the company of established graduates like the co-writer of “The Hangover II”, two Bradley University Board of Trustees and interns at the 2014 NBC Winter Olympics.