Wayne State adds ag depth for students

May 10, 2018 GMT

WAYNE —There’s a growing need for professionals within agriculture with the skill sets needed to advocate for a field that provides about one in three jobs across Nebraska.

That’s why Wayne State has created a new Agricultural Communication and Leadership concentration to tap a growing profession that brings together agricultural, food and life sciences with a practical understanding of all forms of marketing and public relations communication.

Wayne State College will be the only institution in Nebraska to offer a concentration in agricultural communications through the Communication Arts Department.

“I love that this concentration provides students with new options and opportunities that they may not have considered, or even been aware of,” said Dr. Yasuko Taoka, dean of the School of Arts and Humanities. “Many students who are interested in agriculture and natural resources might assume that the career paths are limited to farming and sales, but there are so many other aspects of the agricultural sector that house fulfilling careers.

The agricultural communication and leadership concentration will be included under the mass communication major. The concentration will include the mass communication core courses (15 credit hours) plus 21 credit hours in radio and video production courses, public relations, social media marketing, organizational leadership, intercultural communication and agricultural communication.

In addition, students may choose a 48 hour concentration by choosing 12 more hours of elective credit from areas such as public relations writing, advertising copywriting, electronic journalism and other communications areas.

“The new concentration is geared to students who have a passion to communicate agriculture and perhaps have been involved in 4-H and FFA in the past,” said Dr. Deborah Whitt, chairwoman of the Communication Arts Department.

This concentration will provide students an opportunity to apply their communication skills in yet another area of employment that is particularly relevant to Nebraska, she said.

Internships are readily available for communication students to serve on agricultural boards, associations and councils. The program of study in Agricultural Communication and Leadership would pair well with other programs of study at Wayne State College, Whitt said.

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Want to learn more?

To learn more about the Communication Arts Department at Wayne State College, go to https://www.wsc.edu/commarts.