The university recently announced two new communications master’s degree programs in the School of Continuing Studies on Oct. 29. The Executive Masters of Professional Studies in Global Strategic Communications and the Masters of Professional Studies in Integrated Marketing Communications will become available for students in fall 2015.
Denise Keyes, senior associate dean of the Division of Professional Communication and Public Relations and Corporate Communications Program, explained that the programs are based on the success of similar programs in helping students who are working toward executive positions.
“We are building on the success of our public relations and corporate communications PR program that we have had for the past eight years at Georgetown. It has been very successful and Integrated Marketing Communications has been one of its focus areas,” she said. “We’ve also had a broad range of people interested in the program, so we did see a real opportunity to do something more deeply into the area of global and more designed for executives and their leadership roles. While there are a few programs in that area and there are certainly quite a lot of programs in the communications field, we don’t believe there is one that’s designed quite like ours will approach it.”
The Global Strategic Communications Program class will be capped at 20 to 25 students, but Keyes said the Integrated Marketing Communications program is much larger.
“Our goal is to have all of the offerings that you might see in a school of communications, but none of them that you may have between journalism and PR, or communications and PR. We really get the opportunity to be innovative in this area because what we’re seeing is a real blur between communications disciplines,” Keyes said.
Keyes, who worked to estimate the demand for the two programs, added that she was optimistic about the future of the program.
“In a matter of the announcement, which was made two weeks ago, we have quite a few people signed up for the open house. We have good prospects for both programs,” Keyes said.
Founded in 1956 and currently serving 5,000 students, the School of Continuing Studies serves students at all levels of education from high school students to doctoral and professional students.
“Mainly what we do is a lot of traditional programs. We have an undergraduate program for non-traditional students. We have 12 master’s professional studies programs, which are professionally focused programs for students that are working within the industry,” SCS Communications Representative Andrew Glass said.
Keyes added that students of SCS programs are able to get into direct contact with industry practitioners.
“Our programs are very tied to the industry. For example, although I taught before at the university level, I’m a professional from the industry and many of the people that run our master’s and professional studies programs are industry practitioners,” she said.
Kelsey Donohue (GRD ’16) expressed her excitement about the new programs.
“As someone who is passionate about international relations and communications, I am thrilled to see Georgetown expand with the GSC and IMC programs,” she wrote in an email.
Employers today, from startups to government agencies, are looking for employees who can work across the spectrum of the industry. I think both GSC and IMC will help us students put our best foot forward for our careers.
Tiara Bastfield (GRD ’13) attested to the helpfulness of the program and lauded the SCS for adapting to the changing atmosphere.
“The skills I gained during my time in the Public Relations and Corporate Communications program were invaluable to my career,” she wrote in an email. “As our industry evolves, it is important to think about all of those things with a global context. These new programs are a logical next step as it formalizes the global impact we’ve always had.”