Media College eNews

Former WVU journalism dean and vice president of university relations dies

Chris Martin

MORGANTOWN, W.Va. – Chris Martin, former dean of the West Virginia University P.I. Reed School of Journalism (now the Reed College of Media ) and former vice president of WVU University Relations, died on Wednesday, August 7, at the age of 67.

In Martin’s 23 years at WVU, she became known for her love of journalism and innovative approach to both media education and branding at the university. She joined the journalism faculty in 1990 and served as the director of the school’s undergraduate writing program, news editorial sequence chair and dean from 1997-2003.

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100 Days in Appalachia awarded two grants for expansion across campus and throughout the nation

people meeting

100 Days in Appalachia, a media outlet incubated at the West Virginia University Reed College of Media’s  Media Innovation Center, continues to expand with two new grants that will have a big impact on how the program educates both students and the nation’s media. The digital publication is a collaboration with  West Virginia Public Broadcasting (WVPB) and  The Daily Yonder, of the Center for Rural Strategies.

100 Days has garnered a national reputation as a go-to source for real stories coming out of Appalachia, told by the journalists and community members living and working there. What started as a way to combat stereotypes in the first 100 days of the Trump administration has turned into an ongoing, evolving project that is not only changing the way our country perceives the region but is also experimenting with new digital storytelling and community engagement techniques.

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First MSJ students pursue emphasis in Advocacy and Public Interest Communication

student wearing a virtual reality headset

Two West Virginia University Reed College of Media students are dedicating their classtime to learn about how to generate positive social change through their respective undergraduate programs. The Advocacy and Public Interest Communication program merges various academic fields’ science-based insights about strategic communication for sustained behavioral change into one degree.

Maura Flynn and Julia Hillman took their first APIC course together, working toward criminal justice reform in West Virginia under the leadership of assistant professor Geah Pressgrove. While Flynn and Hillman are passionate about different social issues and have different undergraduate backgrounds – Flynn studying journalism and leadership, Hillman studying public relations and political science – the two found their niche in the advocacy class.

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WVU College of Media students take study abroad trip to Asia

With more than 15,000 miles traveled in just two weeks, College of Media and John Chambers College of Business and Economics students immersed themselves in the cultures, media industries and technologies of Tokyo, Japan, and Seoul, South Korea.

The 14-day trip, led by Associate Professor Sammy Lee and Teaching Assistant Professor David Smith, focused on individual content-creation specific to students’ interests while exploring their future career fields throughout different parts of the world.

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Big changes for WVU IMC and DMC master’s degree programs


West Virginia University’s renowned Integrated Marketing Communications master’s degree program has implemented significant changes for the 2019-2020 academic year, including reduced tuition, fewer required courses and seven new areas of emphasis.

The tuition and course requirement changes affect both IMC and the relatively new online M.S. in Data Marketing Communications. Tuition for both programs will decrease by 16 percent, lowering the overall program cost to $24,600. And, graduation requirements will be decreased by one course, allowing students to complete their degree with ten courses in as few as one and a half years. This is in response to an increasingly competitive market.

“Our online IMC program was the first of its kind, and we’re always looking for ways to keep our programs innovative and accessible,” said Chad Mezera, assistant dean of online programs. “WVU IMC is among the best online master’s degrees in the country and the DMC program is the first of its kind, developed specifically to address a known talent gap in today’s industry and graduate highly-sought data-minded marketing communicators. We don’t want tuition to be a deterrent from pursuing a world-class graduate education.”

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College of Media students and faculty recognized at 2019 PRSA Crystal Awards Gala

Rita and Geah at the PRSA Crystal Awards

West Virginia University Reed College of Media faculty members and students received several honors at this year’s Public Relations Society of America West Virginia Chapter Awards Gala.

Associate Professor Rita Colistra, Ph.D., was named the 2019 PRSA-WV Practitioner of the Year, and Associate Professor Geah Pressgrove, Ph.D., was named the 2019 PRSA-WV Public Relations Educator of the Year. Additionally, the WVU chapter of the Public Relations Student Society of America was named the Chapter of the Year for the third consecutive time.

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High school students receive scholarships to attend WVU media camps

Media Campers get help with video

Four high schoolers experienced life as West Virginia University Reed College of Media students thanks to a generous sponsorship from Douglas Widmeyer.

Widmeyer, who lives in Martinsburg, West Virginia, made the donation to send students in the Eastern Panhandle to one of the three-day summer camps offered by the College of Media. Isabella Cameron of Martinsburg and Morgan Sherwood of Hedgesville attended traditional Media Camp, where they captured video and photos of incoming students at WVU New Student Orientation to create promotional pieces that reflect the excitement and anticipation of starting college.

 Morgan Sherwood      Cyrus Murray

Cyrus Murray and Nathaniel Wright, both of Martinsburg, attended Sports and Adventure Media Camp, which included a trip to the WVU Challenge Course where they used GoPro cameras to record first-hand accounts of ziplining through the hills of West Virginia.

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West Virginia University Reed College of Media’s podcast begins third season

The West Virginia University Reed College of Media’s “Marketing Communications Today” podcast is airing weekly beginning on May 9, 2019, entering its third successful season.

The syndicated show highlights emerging or current trends impacting marketers today and airs live on Thursdays at 1 p.m. ET. Key topics include how data impacts the creative process, data-driven marketing strategy, telling a story with data and emerging social trends. Past episodes can be found on Spotify, Apple Podcasts, Google Play, YouTube and Podbean

Cyndi Greenglass, an inaugural faculty member of the Data Marketing Communication’s master’s degree at WVU and host of the program, helped start the podcast in February of 2018.

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Barbara Sayre Casey inducted into WVU Academy of Distinguished Alumni

Barbara Casey and other WVU Distinguished Alumni inductees

Barbara Sayre Casey, a 1959 journalism graduate, received one of the highest honors awarded to West Virginia University graduates when she was inducted into the WVU Academy of Distinguished Alumni on May 17.

Casey  has distinguished herself as a leader in public relations, branding and professional advancement for women. While a journalism student at West Virginia University, Casey was also a reporter for the Parkersburg News and a contributor at a local radio station before moving to Los Angeles to pursue what would become a lifelong journey in public relations.

“Barbara is incredibly deserving of this honor,” said Maryanne Reed, dean of the WVU Reed College of Media. “She has not only evolved with the PR discipline but has led the way. Her effective leadership and innovative spirit was evident when she was a student in the “J-School” and has been a driving force in her career ever since.”    

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WVU Reed College of Media professor releases new book

Digging deep and uncovering the truth is second nature to veteran investigative reporter John Temple.

And now, the West Virginia University Reed College of Media journalism professor is releasing his fourth nonfiction book, "Up in Arms: How the Bundy Family Hijacked Public Lands, Outfoxed the Federal Government, and Ignited America’s Patriot Movement.” The book chronicles Cliven and Ammon Bundy’s 2014 standoffs with the federal government over land-grazing fees in Nevada.

“I had other books in mind but then it occurred to me one day that no one had written a comprehensive book on the Bundys, and it felt so timely and related to all of the civil discontent that our country is experiencing,” said Temple. “It felt like the first big public event that awoke mainstream Americans to the idea that people were really unhappy with the federal government and I thought that was worth exploring.”

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