The Communication Studies major engages students in coursework that aims to develop the analytical and practical skills needed as contemporary communication platforms advance and diversify. Additionally, students are schooled in the traditional areas that constitute a distinctive element of Jesuit Education--rhetoric and eloquence--whose Humanistic roots extend from Antiquity to the Renaissance and into the present era. The theoretical foundation for Communication Studies involves multiple philosophical and historical perspectives, as well as new interdisciplinary approaches. Communication Studies is the major of the future because it enables students to embrace creativity and intellectual rigor, while at the same time developing skills that have practical applications in the modern workplace.
The Communication Studies program provides students with a conceptual understanding of the role that communication plays within society, helping them become exceptional communicators, able to engage with a variety of media platforms. Mass media, history, popular culture, politics, leadership, and current events provide the essential source material for many communication courses, whose content continually evolves to absorb new communicative practices and technological developments. Courses focusing on the relationship between communication and culture promote an appreciation for diversity and an understanding of the way shared symbols and narratives relate to personal and cultural identities.
Recent Communication Studies graduates have gone off to pursue careers in industry, government, non-profit organizations, education, and media. Because the field of communication is amenable to interdisciplinary explorations, many students have also completed minors in areas such as business, journalism, international affairs, and public relations, which prepared them for employment at reputable companies such as Nike, Yelp, and others. Finally, some of our best students have been accepted to graduate programs in communication, law, journalism, media, and education.
Communication Studies sponsors the annual John Quincy Adams oratory contest, a storied Gonzaga University tradition that is now a televised event. The Department is also home to the University’s nationally recognized intercollegiate debate program, which has its own facility, Conway House.