Communication Clubs Hold First Combined Open House

The Communication Department’s student-run organizations held the first ever “Communication Department Open House” in Jules L. Plangere on September 23. The open house was created solely by the students in an attempt to allow all majors to explore each of the seven organizations while in action.

The University radio station,WMCX, was stationed outside of Plangere, welcoming the students as they entered the open house. “We broadcasted our music over the speakers and set up a promotional table outside,” said Nicole Calascibetta, General Manager ofWMCX.

The University’s television station opened their studio and played a few of their shows for students to watch. “We had some promo items for people to grab and we answered a lot of questions,” said Katie Meyer, Station Manager ofHawk TV.

The University’s division of Public Relations Student Society of America (PRSSA) shared with students the many capabilities of the organization by demonstrating how they manage their client’s websites, Facebook and Twitter pages.

The student online news portal,The Verge, demonstrated how their website works. Previous articles available online were shown to students, while editors explained how the organization works.

The student run newspaper,The Outlook,opened their office for students to come in and watch how a newspaper is operated. Jacklyn Kouefati, the Editor-in-Chief, also referred students to different section editors to begin writing for the newspaper.

CommWorks, the student performance organization and MOCC, the public speaking organization, held a presentation in Plangere room 203 for students to see first-hand what the organizations are all about.

 “The idea of the event was bringing these people … into our place of work to see what we do every week,” said Christopher Orlando, one of the contributing members and Managing Editor forThe Outlook. “We thought this event would be a huge success because it let everyone see what it is like making all of this stuff happen.”

Kelly Brockett, PRSSA Co-President, explained that the open house provided students with “a more personable set up” than the Involvement Fair was able to provide.

“By having them come to the specific office [of the clubs] they now know exactly where it is … They know what the staff looks like, they can see the staff in their element, which I think makes it better for the student,” said Brockett.

Upon entry of the building, the students were each presented with a card and encouraged to receive a stamp from each organization. If students received a stamp from each of the seven organizations, they were entered into a drawing for a gift basket.

The gift basket included memorabilia from each of the organizations, a $100 Best Buy gift card sponsored by the Communication Department and tickets to a show at the Stone Pony in Asbury Park. The winner of the basket was University graduate student, Maria KuKhareva. 

Each organization reported to have received success during the open house. “I think that the event went really well,” said Calascibetta. “I was really excited to see all of the new faces.”

Dan Gunderman, the Editor-in-Chief ofThe Verge,said, “We are pulling people from the residential side of campus right here to the communication department… For freshman and upperclassmen that want to get involved this is the perfect opportunity to come over and check out the different clubs.”

Dr. Chad Dell, Chair of the Communication Department felt that the open house was a great idea for two reasons.  One being that the student clubs are “wonderful jewels of the campus and we need to promote them more and let students know that they exist and their value.”

Secondly, Dell said, “Students increasingly understand that if you just walk out of [college] with one set of skills like journalism, like print, there is less of a chance you will be hired.”

As a result, collaborating the organizations together showed Dell that the students understand the importance of learning multiple skill sets while in college.

Calascibetta explained that prior to the open house,WMCXandHawk TVhave worked together, althoughWMCXhad never really worked with any of the other communication organizations. “This kind of gave us a chance to work with them. I definitely feel closer to the different Communication Department [clubs],” said Calascibetta.

 “It was nice to talk to people outside of justThe Outlookoffice,The Vergeoffice or wherever, it was nice to see everybody come together and collaborate,” said Orlando.

Overall, students that attended the open house enjoyed the opportunity to feel welcomed into each of the organization’s offices and learn what they were all about. “I think it is a good way to get active. I am not entirely involved in a lot of things but this is a good first step,” said Brandon Johnson, junior political science major.

The open house was advertised through social media outlets, advertisements were printed inThe Outlooknewspaper andHawk TVcreated a commercial that was played on Channel 12 and shared on the web.

“Today was the result of a lot of hard work and we’re very proud of it,” Orlando said. “Personal relationships were built over this, now you have a connection over atHawk TVor you have a connection atThe Outlook, so it definitely allows us to collaborate more on projects in the future.”

“I love seeing the students who are interested and passionate about doing communication,” said Dell. “I thought it was a great way to promote the best of what we have to offer.”