One New Major Opens Many Doors

March 23, 2012 | Borough of Manhattan Community College

One New Major Opens Many Doors

“Communicate, communicate, communicate.”

That’s the advice passed on by BMCC professor Sandra Poster, and which she heard at a wedding, on how to make a marriage last.

It also happens to be very good advice for how make a career last—and thrive.

Strong communications skills—listening, critical thinking, writing and speaking—are the common denominator for success in a wide span of industries; marketing research, law, public affairs, journalism, advertising, not-for-profit management, community relations, human resources, counseling, and many others.

Step one: Major in communications
The first step in accessing a communications-related career path is earning a degree in communications studies—an option now available to BMCC students as they register for Fall 2012, through the college’s new Associate of Arts program, Communications Studies.

In today’s workplace, “We are just saturated in communication, and people who do that well, can have quite a career,” said Professor Poster, who teaches in BMCC’s Department of Speech, Communications & Theatre Arts.

The demand for communication professionals has been amplified by the emergence of new technologies, which in turn have globalized business and service industries.

Professionals who can communicate across cultures, and through constantly evolving media, find themselves in high demand.

“Success comes from getting what’s in your head and heart into someone else’s head and heart,” as Poster describes it.

Step two: Build a foundation
Students majoring in communications will gain a strong foundation in the Liberal Arts, and build their ability to communicate in one-on-one and small group situations, as well as to vast audiences, nationally and worldwide.

Courses will cover communications issues and strategies in interpersonal and  intercultural contexts, and cover vital industry topics such as conflict resolution and the mass media.

Electives will range from business, technology and social science classes, and internships—which will be located in industries as diverse as the communications field, itself—will enable students to apply what they’re learning, in a professional setting.

Step three: Take it to the next level
Graduates of BMCC’s communications program will be eligible to transfer to the Communications Studies program.s at Brooklyn College, and the CUNY Online B.A. Program in Culture and Communication. They will also be able to transfer to other CUNY schools, as well as other public and private colleges and universities.

“A degree in communications really does prepare students to ‘Start Here and Go Anywhere’,” said Eva I.  Kolbusz-Kijne, Deputy Chair of the Speech, Communications & Theatre Arts department, and Professor Poster added that “historically, the communications field has been very good for women, minorities, and entrepreneurs—and our students have a strong entrepreneurial spirit.”

For more information on the new Associate of Arts in Communications Studies program, call 212-220-8090, or visit the Speech Department on BMCC’s main campus, 199 Chambers Street, Room N665.