We can use the power of communication to make our lives and our world better — if we can learn as much as possible about what shapes how we communicate, how communication shapes us, and how we can communicate with others in ways that shape the common good.
The Communication Department offers a combination of “hands-on” training and rigorous analysis. In our program, students learn the communication skills that employers want — how to report a news story, make a presentation, produce films and television programs, design communication campaigns, and create digital content. But, unlike many other programs, we pay as much attention to helping students develop messages that are informed by research. What moves people? What moves them to act? How do we know how others interpret and interact with our messages? How do we listen to what others have to say and what they need? We draw on a long tradition of theorizing and studying interpersonal, mass, global, intercultural, and networked communication to help students answer these questions and communicate effectively.
We provide an education that does not train students what to think and do, but that helps them learn how to think and do for themselves.
About Our Program
The Department of Communication offers a program of studies leading to a bachelor of arts in communication. The major prepares students for a wide variety of careers in the communication, entertainment, tech, journalism, and non-profit industries. A minor in digital filmmaking or journalism is also available. Students explore the theories, research methods, responsibilities, institutional structures, and effects of mass communication, interpersonal communication, strategic communication, global communication, and computer-mediated communication. The integration of theory and practice is essential to the major. We help students to apply their knowledge of the communication process to create their own speeches, films, television programs, journalism, Web content, and communication and marketing campaigns. Many of our students go directly to work in these fields after graduation. The major also prepares students for graduate studies in a number of fields, including communication, film, journalism, and law.
Five SCU students go behind-the-scenes with Assistant Professor Nico Opper on the set of an independent film.
As the Editor-in-Chief of The Santa Clara, Carolyn Kuimelis ’22 played a pivotal role in establishing an online presence for the paper during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Faculty & Staff
- Knight-Ridder/San Jose Mercury News Professor
Michael Whalen is a documentary filmmaker who teaches screenwriting, film/tv production and history courses on Hollywood and the U.S. film/television industry. Prior to returning to Santa Clara to teach, he spent 10 years living in Los Angeles as a working television writer, producer and director.
- Department Manager
408-554-5498 | Vari Hall 229
Communication Assistant Prof. Melissa Brown explores the advantages and dangers of life online
Students in Professor Barbara Kelley’s Advanced Journalism class told the stories of Calle Willow as residents and business owners fought to stay in the historic district.
Beyond the Classroom
News & Events
A Miller Center for Social Entrepreneurship fellowship gave Hannah Miller ’22 a unique opportunity to help share the stories of Baltimore-based social entrepreneurs determined to make lasting change in their communities.
San Jose native Lucy Nino ’22 worked with an Oscar-winning team of producers during an internship with Story Force Entertainment.
Alexis Takagi '22 wanted to be an agent of change. She is making that happen as a participant in the Independent California Colleges Advocate Program
Life After SCU
Veronica Rodriguez '13 is a screenwriter and director for film and television in Los Angeles. We caught up with her to discuss career choices, family life, and advice on how to make it in the entertainment industry.
The summer Olympics are back and Jack Benjamin ’18 will be on the call for NBC Sports.
Mariana Perera '20 will use her fellowship to study disability rights policy in Brazil
Pulitzer Prize winner Stephen Hobbs '11 reflects on the emotional toll of covering the Parkland school shooting and how SCU influenced his journalism career.