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    Open House

CIC hosts graduate programs open house

Posted November 14, 2018
By Abe Danaher, communications assistant

Nearly 50 potential students visited the College of Information and Communications on Nov. 9 to learn more about its master’s and doctoral programs.

The CIC’s inaugural Graduate and Professional Inclusivity Day was an open house targeted toward students at historically black colleges and universities in South Carolina, as well as Columbia College and USC. Attendees from schools including Claflin University, South Carolina State and Voorhees College made the trek to campus to get information on the MA, MMC, MLIS and Ph.D. programs.

“It was very successful,” said Dr. Shirley Staples Carter, a professor in the School of Journalism and Mass Communications who led the event’s planning efforts. “It was our first time departing from a traditional graduate recruitment day or open house.”

The directors of the schools, Dr. Andrea Tanner and Dr. Dick Kawooya, gave attendees an overview of their programs and discussed potential careers. Attendees also heard from Dr. Brooke McKeever, the faculty coordinator of the MMC program, and Dr. Sarah Keeling, the student services manager of the School of Library and Information Sciences, who delved deeper into the details of the program and gave stories of how CIC alumni were using their degrees.

There was also a panel at the open house consisting of current students from each of the programs, as well as MLIS alumna Kathy Carroll. This panel discussed the transition from HBCUs to USC, what kind of academic backgrounds fit well with specific graduate programs, and post-graduate career opportunities for CIC alumni.

The open house is another step in the college’s efforts to increase inclusion and diversity in its student body. Last year, the CIC hosted a research symposium that explored how faculty in the college were studying diversity, equity and inclusion. The CIC also hosts an annual Martin Luther King Jr. Day Breakfast of Champions in conjunction with the Midland’s chapter of the American Advertising Federation, and it has plans to launch its own digital media academy next year with a boot camp geared toward minority students.

With success of this years’ open house, Carter said that it will become an annual event coordinated by the CIC’s graduate programs and student services division, and in conjunction with the diversity and inclusion program.

Rushondra James, the CIC’s assistant dean for student services who helped coordinate the event, called the it “overwhelmingly successful” and reiterated that the open house will be annual. “Not only did the students who came learn that they are welcome here, but we showed that they are welcome,” James said.

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