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Evaluators scrutinize personnel, courses, facilities

Comm Dept passes accrediting litmus test

Dr. Tony Fellow Chair, Department of Communications

The Accrediting Council on Education in Journalism and Mass Communications recommended re-accreditation of the Department of Communications at its March 14 and 15 meeting in Chicago.

During its three-day visit to the campus in November, the team evaluated the department’s mission, governance and administration; curriculum and instruction; diversity and inclusiveness; full-time and part-time faculty; research, creative and professional activity; student services; resources, facilities and equipment; professional and public service; and assessment of learning outcomes.

“The accreditation team was impressed with the department faculty and their diverse accomplishments,” said Dr. Rick Pullen, dean of the College of Communications. “Everyone in the department can feel proud to be a part of the best communications program in the West.”

The team said the department’s strengths include:--Strong college and department leadership dedicated to creating an environment that encourages the best work from faculty and students despite increasingly limited funds.They noted that the department faculty as well as other campus faculty and administrators have high regard for the chair and consider him a respected representative of the department.

--A passionate, collegial faculty motivated to educate, train, inspire and help large numbers of mainly working students see and achieve their potential.

--A hard-working faculty that is remarkably productive in scholarship despite a four-course load and heavy service responsibilities and engagements.

--Enthusiastic, appreciative students who make the most of the time available for study and professional interaction and practice between jobs and long commutes.

--Impressive student performance in local, regional and national contests and impressive placement in the working world.

--A required internship experience that draws effectively on the rich professional opportunities of Orange County and surrounding cities and counties.

The ACEJMC accrediting team, which visited the university in November, included: Trevor Brown, professor emeritus, School of Journalism, Indiana University; Peter Bhatia, executive editor of The Oregonian; Hubert Brown, chair, The Newhouse School of Public Communication, Syracuse University; Jean Folkerts, dean, School of Journalism and Mass Communication, University of North Carolina, and Patricia Rose, executive director, American Academy of Advertising.

“We are delighted with the accrediting team’s evaluation,” Dr. Tony Fellow, department chair, said. “This is an outstanding program with an outstanding faculty.”

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