Andrew Holleran / Photo editor
Ohio State offers more than 175 undergraduate majors ranging from anthropology to zoology, but it does not offer a broadcast journalism major.
Public affairs journalism is offered in the School of Communication along with communication analysis and practice, new media and communication technology and strategic communication. None of these programs specifically work with the concepts of broadcast.
According to the School of Communication website, public affairs journalism has a “multi-media” focus that “prepares you with skills required by contemporary media to package new stories with word, still photo, audio and video.”
“The schools never had the major,” said Carroll Glynn, director of the School of Communication. “We have two-degree programs, journalism and communication and within the schools there are focus areas.”
Some people speculate that OSU might not want to compete with other schools in the region that have a broadcast journalism major.
“I think the general consensus is there are other schools in Ohio offering that sort of degree and maybe it’s something that they don’t want to compete with,” said Dave Fisher, head of Buckeye TV. “They probably decided not to duplicate efforts.”
Glynn had other reasons for why the major isn’t offered.
“Alumni felt that learning studio cameras doesn’t make a whole lot of sense because they are extraordinarily expensive,” Glynn said. “The likelihood of someone who goes into that field actually working with the same equipment they learned on is highly unlikely.”
Some students in the public affairs journalism major are not satisfied with the lack of broadcast focus.
“Obviously it’s a little upsetting. I think that students should be learning every facet of journalism in the journalism major,” said Evan Closky, a 2012 graduate in public affairs journalism. “The teachers do an unbelievable job, but we have resources on this campus that should be used for television that aren’t even being used or funded.”
Closky said Buckeye TV, a student-run television station, is one such resource not used to its full advantage. Closky, who is the sports director of Buckeye TV, said it is currently offered as a Theatre 300 class and is not associated with the School of Communication.
Yet the idea of merging Buckeye TV and The Lantern has been discussed.
“There has been some discussion on finding ways to integrate Buckeye TV with The Lantern and I’m not sure what kind of courses would come out of that,” Glynn said. “I think it might be helpful in the future to integrate it more in with the journalism aspect of the program.”
Closky said being at OSU and wanting a job in broadcast journalism can be somewhat of a catch-22.
“There is a lot of education that Ohio State can provide but can’t teach,” Closky said. “I was able to work at CBS in New York City working, an invaluable experience I don’t think I would have gotten if I wasn’t a student at Ohio State but the information that I learned at the internship was information that I couldn’t learn at Ohio State.”
Some journalism students at OSU have expressed their interest in broadcast, and Glynn said there are movements being made to satisfy some of those needs.
“People are interested and they’re looking for ways to broaden. Journalism as a whole is moving more towards this integrative approach, not only writing but using different forms of media, like the web and cameras,” she said. “We’ve come a long way, but could we improve? Yeah.”