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SJMC Majors


Students prepare for careers in advertising agencies, publications, the broadcast media, broadcasting stations, business and industry, and trade and professional associations.

Non-majors may choose advertising as a minor, which requires the completion of 21 credit hours that may include both management and creative advertising courses. Both tracks, account management and creative, are available as minors. [More about advertising major]

Electronic Media

Students select one of two sequences: Broadcast News or Radio-Television. Coursework in the Electronic Media sequences during the first two years is similar. Specialization occurs during the last two years.

All electronic media students learn basic and more advanced techniques and disciplines of pre-production, studio and field production, and post-production, especially digital tape editing. [More about electronic media major]


The magazine major prepares students to be magazine writers, editors, designers and creative directors.  As part of their coursework, students:

  • Write magazine articles for consumer, trade and organization magazines.
  • Work as staff members for the nationally award-winning 515 Magazine and other titles and Web sites published through the E.T. Meredith Center for Magazine Studies.
  • Produce a business plan and design for a magazine of their own.

In recent years, students have also produced magazines for the Annie E. Casey Foundation on the Making Connections initiative in Des Moines and on the issue of Prisoner Re-Entry in Iowa. [More about magazines major]


As News/Internet majors, students gain knowledge and skills needed for careers in reporting, editing, management or publishing, on-line and on paper. Graduates work on newspaper staffs, in the news departments of other news media and agencies, in public information positions and in Web site editing positions. [More about news-internet major]

Public Relations

Public relations professionals work to establish and maintain mutually beneficial relationships between an organization/client and its many different publics. They work in many different settings, including corporate, small business, government, political campaigns, non-profit organizations, agencies and PR counseling firms.

The range of opportunities for qualified PR professionals is one of the broadest: media relations, special events, fund raising, speech writing, employee relations, investor relations, corporate communications and counseling, strategic planning and crisis communication.

Students exercise the research, planning and communication skills they are developing as they work with “real world” clients in each of their PR classes. [More about public relations major]

Masters of Communication Leadership

Drake University’s Master’s of Communication program is a unique program that prepares communications professionals for leadership positions in an ever-changing media and communications environment. It combines the study of communications with coursework in business and public administration to create a broad-based and practical preparation for a challenging future. It is a 36-hour program and is designed for part-time study; it can be completed in two years, including summers. At present, all classes are offered on campus and are not available online. [More about Masters of Communication Leadership]