A Message From The Chair
Welcome to Fordham’s Department of Communication & Media Studies (CMS). We are committed to the pluralistic examination of human communication in the Digital Age, including speech, journalism, fiction and film, music and drama, television and radio, and interactive and social media. This academic department offers the systematic study of the aims, forms, and life-shaping impacts of traditional forms of human communication as well as the rapid and radical changes occurring in media industries and media theory occasioned by search technologies, social networking, on-line reporting, and international communication.
Our education is research based, theoretically sharp, socially critical, self reflective, and practical. The purpose of the knowledge and skills we teach, in these diverse and fast-changing areas, is to make our world a better place. Students learn to incorporate, within our discipline, the concepts, research methods, technologies, and practices of a wide spectrum of other disciplines, ranging from philosophy to the cultural sciences, humanities, and fine as well as commercial arts. All our programs emphasize values and ethics, in settings as various as public interest, government, NGO, and corporate cultures. Given the scope, importance, and contemporary relevance of our field, it is no surprise that CMS is the largest undergraduate major at Fordham and that graduate students are excited to enroll in our Public Communication MA program. We offer programs on all three Fordham Campuses--Rose Hill, Lincoln Center, and Westchester.
Our faculty is composed of academic and industry leaders who serve as models for critical dialogue and bring top-flight credentials to every course. The current faculty has produced more than 50 books, countless articles and chapters, the full spectrum of creations and productions in the media they study, including poetry, fiction, documentary films, news broadcasts, radio programs, advertisements, and blogs. Our faculty includes not only leading scholars but also practitioners in news, electronic media, performance, and production. Professional backgrounds of our faculty include theoreticians and researchers in the field of media ecology and gender studies, a former Editor at Ms. and Working Woman, award-winning novelist and playwright, CBS Bureau Chief in Moscow (Emmy winner), and reporter for The Wall Street Journal. Faculty contribute to academic journals and often appear in national media including, recently, The New York Times, USA Today, National Public Radio, CBS Evening News, News Hour with Jim Lehrer, NBC News, and many others.
Our current undergraduate students use the theoretical knowledge and the practical skills they
develop in their coursework, in our laboratories at Fordham, and in internships throughout New York City, the media capitol of the world, for instance at ABC News, Atlantic Records, BBC, Bravo, CBS Sports, CBS Sunday Morning, The Colbert Report, Columbia Films, Cosmopolitan, The Daily Show with Jon Stewart, ESPN, Late Night with Conan O’Brien, MTV, NBC Nightly News, New York City Opera, Sesame Street, Simon & Schuster, 60 Minutes, Time, The Today Show, and The Wall Street Journal. Our alumni include winners of Emmy, Peabody and Dupont awards, Fulbright scholars, a past President of the Associated Press, a National Book Award winner (Don DeLillo) and such sports broadcasting luminaries as Yankees’ play-by-play TV broadcaster (Michael Kay).
Ours is an engaged and generous department within our university and beyond. We host several professional conferences, many guest speakers, and visiting scholars from all over the world every year. We are intimately involved in such student run media at Fordham as the Ram and Observer newspapers, the WFUV radio station, Fordham Nightly News (FNN), BronxNet (including “Eye on Fordham”), the Fordham Center for Community Based Research, Liberty Partnerships, and the UN Alliance of Civilizations. Annually, we offer the Ann M. Sperber Biography Award for the outstanding book on a person in media. We offer the Edward A. Walsh Scholarship ($20,000.00) in memory of one of Fordham's legendary professors of Communication, to help a CMS student cover the cost of tuition during his/her senior year. Our Brown Bag Lunch Series, last year entitled “Careers in Communication,” offered 8 prominent speakers including Phil Scheffler, (Executive Editor of “60 Minutes”), Mike Breen (FCRH ’87 Sportscaster for ABC, ESPN, and MSG) and two former Walsh Award winners--Richard Hake (FCRH ’91) and Julianne Welby (FCRH ’93) of New York Public Radio (WNYC). Our student Honors Society— Lambda Pi Eta, is also active Department affairs and in hosting events campus events.
Our communication & Media Studies faculty, students, and staff participate in and embody Fordham's Jesuit ethos. We care about the hearts, minds, and souls of all those who belong to our department community and those with whom we come into contact through out work. Day-to-day interactions in our department are vigorous, challenging, always friendly, and fun. Most of all, we are focusd on and dedicated to our students, to discovering and engaging the dreams, aspirations and talents of each individual student in order to help them find their best niche in the world and to exercise their capacity to with and for others. Our greatest satisfaction comes from the many ways our faculty, current students, and alumni are making the world a better place through their extraordinarily humane participation and expert professional service.
Come visit us at either location, in Manhattan or in the Bronx. Visit us in our offices, multimedia labs, and classrooms. We will welcome you aboard our exciting journey!
Professor Frederick Wertz