About the College
Marie Hardin, Dean, Donald P. Bellisario College of Communications
The Donald P. Bellisario College of Communications provides the opportunities and resources of a large university with the personalized feel and support of a small school. As the largest accredited program of its kind in the nation, students can find numerous opportunities to fit in and succeed. The Bellisario College uses a proven approach to help students prepare for success. An emphasis on the combination of classroom instruction, campus media opportunities and career preparation represents the core of our educational philosophy. Faculty members blend strong academic and professional backgrounds and possess a commitment to excellence in teaching. In skills classes and internships, students use state-of-the-art technology to gain hands-on experience on their way to becoming the next generation of great digital storytellers.
Mission and Goals
The mission of the Donald P. Bellisario College of Communications is to prepare students to take their place in an information-rich society and in the professions as active, critical and ethical participants. We promote effective, responsible use of communications media and technologies by individuals, organizations, industries and government.
The Donald P. Bellisario College of Communications is evaluated regularly by the Accrediting Council on Education in Journalism and Mass Communications and has consistently met the high standards of the Council. For undergraduate students, accreditation most practically means that most upper-level professional classes are small, the College uses the latest in technology, and provides outstanding student service.
Departments and Schools
Department of Advertising/Public Relations
Students who major in advertising/public relations prepare for careers in business, communications or mass media-related fields. Students learn the art of persuasive storytelling and work with clients as they build campaigns and combine classroom instruction with hands-on opportunities.
Department of Film-Video and Media Studies
With two distinct majors offered in the department, students may choose to focus on film-video, with creative and production-related career paths, or media studies, with more research-based opportunities. Classes are small allowing students who choose either major to thrive as part of a collaborative community on campus.
Department of Journalism
Journalism is a vital skill set in a rapidly changing communications environment. With an emphasis on digital and multimedia storytelling, and by using cutting-edge technology such as immersive realities, the department prepares students for important careers in communications and media fields.
Department of Telecommunications
Telecommunications impacts everyone every day. It encompasses a variety of electronic media, including radio and TV, cable and satellite, the internet, and wired and mobile technologies. The department prepares students for careers in media management or production and is an internationally recognized center for research on telecommunications issues.
Administrative Enrollment Control
Just one of the Bellisario College’s undergraduate majors is under an administrative enrollment control. Students intending to study advertising/public relations must maintain a minimum grade-point average to be accepted into the major.
A Concurrent Majors Program is one in which students take courses to concurrently meet the requirements of at least two majors, with graduation for all majors in the program occurring during the same semester.
Concurrent majors are encouraged, allowing students to explore areas of interest and complement their communications degrees. Students may not complete concurrent majors with two majors in the Bellisario College, though, and some other controlled majors from across the University are not eligible either.
A student who fails to earn a 2.00 cumulative grade-point average will be placed on academic warning. A student placed on academic warning will have a hold placed on registration and will be required to meet with an academic adviser in order for this registration hold to be removed. To remove academic warning, the cumulative grade-point average must be 2.00 or higher.
A student in academic warning who fails to maintain a semester grade-point average of 2.00 or higher will be academically suspended. A student who has been academically suspended may not schedule courses at the University for two consecutive semesters. (Note: Summer session is equal to one semester.)
Office of Academic Services
A dedicated, nine-person staff supports students through scheduled appointments, drop-in hours and a variety of support services.
Office of Internships and Career Services
The Bellisario College encourages undergraduate students to complete internships, multiple internships if possible, to help prepare them for communications-related careers. The office conducts two job fairs and offers additional support through resume workshops, mock interviews and “career conversations” with alumni who return to campus.
Office of Diversity and Inclusion
The Office of Diversity and Inclusion strives to make the Bellisario College a comfortable, welcoming home for all students, staff and faculty. It specifically supports undergraduate students with on-campus events, guest lectures and career-development programs.
Office of Alumni Relations
With regular on-campus mentoring programs pairing undergraduates and alumni, as well as additional special events, the Office of Alumni Relations strives to put undergraduate students in a position to succeed by connecting those students with alumni as part of the office’s overall mission.
Schreyer Honors College
The Schreyer Honors College, regarded as one of the nation’s top programs of its kind, promotes achieving academic excellence with integrity, building a global perspective, and creating opportunities for leadership and civic engagement. Schreyer Scholars, including those admitted after their first or second year of enrollment, are a diverse and motivated group of approximately 2,000 students at University Park and 20 Commonwealth campuses. The College strives to educate students who will have an important and ethical influence in the world, to improve educational practice, and to continue to be recognized as a leading force in honors education nationwide.
Honors in the Donald P. Bellisario College of Communications
Communications students seeking an honors option may be accepted as freshmen or again later during a “junior gateway” opportunity.