Strategic communications department changes name to advertising and public relations, creates combined minor


Peyton McKenzie

The newly-named department of advertising and public relations will add two faculty members to teach advertising and integrated communications this coming fall.

Katie Langley, News Editor

The name of the department of strategic communication will change to the department of advertising and public relations. With this change, the ADPR department will merge the advertising and integrated communications and public relations minors.

The updated name will take effect starting in the summer II 2023 semester, the Quinnipiac University School of Communications announced in an email to SoC students March 8.

The new department’s classes will be listed in the university course catalog under the code ADPR, replacing the current STC listing. In addition, the code for the master’s in public relations program courses will change from STC to PRR.

Antoaneta Vanc, chair of advertising and public relations and professor of strategic communications, wrote in an email to the Chronicle Monday that the separate majors in public relations and advertising will remain separate programs.

However, the department will begin phasing out the two minors in the summer II semester, Vanc wrote.

Students who have public relations and advertising and integrated communications minors will be allowed to graduate with their current minor. Vanc said there are approximately 200 students equally distributed across both minors.

In the fall, students will be able to declare a minor in advertising and public relations while new students will default to the combined minor.

Katie Place, professor of strategic communications, said the new ADPR name is meant to better represent what faculty in the department teach.

“Strategic communication is an accurate term and it really gets at the integration and the technology and everything that we’re doing,” Place said. “But we wanted to clarify and separate out advertising and public relations, particularly so the incoming students or students interested in pursuing our program would understand exactly what they’re going to be able to study.”

Vanc wrote that the department’s name change will better represent the wording that students will see in the advertising and public relations industries.

“The decision to change the name of the Department to Advertising and Public Relations was carefully considered to better illustrate the major and minor offerings within the department,” Vanc wrote. “This decision is a very good move as it aligns better with the terms that have the greatest market relevance and define the names of the professions our students will apply for as they go out in the industry.”

Place said the shift is primarily a name change, and the classes under ADPR will not see significant changes to curriculum.

However, Place said the new department will allow for more flexibility in electives, as both public relations and advertising and integrated communications-based courses can now count for both programs.

“I think this change makes a lot of sense, as I know many classes for PR and advertising majors were essentially the same with different labels,” said Matt Vogel, a sophomore 3+1 public relations and media studies double major.

Vogel said combining the courses in advertising and public relations will help students get acquainted with peers with different career goals and to share ideas across the public relations and advertising industries.

“I have strictly taken more PR-based classes over advertising ones,” Vogel said. “I now most likely have the opportunity to take more classes related to advertising that count toward my major.”

Place said that the strategic communications department recently hired two new faculty members, Bhakti Sharma from the University of Florida and Su-Yeon Cho from the University of Miami, to teach advertising and integrated communications.

“I am so happy to say that coming (this)fall, we will have two most impressive new faculty with specialization in digital media, virtual and augmented reality, virtual influencers, the use of emerging technologies in strategic communication, and understanding the usage of mobile applications by brands,” Vanc wrote.

Sharma and Cho will teach advertising and integrated communications core and elective courses as well as courses in the master’s in public relations program, Vanc wrote.

In addition, Vanc wrote that the STC/ADPR department plans to offer more courses in social media in the coming semesters, though not immediately in fall 2023.

“This is going to signal amazing growth in our department,” Place said. “New name, more flexibility with the electives and then two new hires who are going to develop and teach a lot of new social media course offerings.”