Communication Department News

Showing stories between September 1, 2014 and September 30, 2014.

Comm pros offer insider info to students

Posted September 18, 2014 by Barrie Hill in category students

Department of Communication students benefit from the department's strong ties with local media professionals.


"It is quite common for our faculty members to invite communication professionals into the classroom to share relevant experiences with our students," said Department Chair Dr. Charla Markham Shaw. "Students hear first-hand from industry professionals about what life is like in the 'real world.'"


"It is a definite benefit to our students that our campus is strategically located in the center of the Dallas-Fort Worth area where the communication field is thriving," Markham Shaw added. "We are always appreciative when these professionals can share their experience and insight with our students."


This fall, many professionals are meeting with students, both in the classroom and through student organizations.


Jimmy Gonzalez, the VP of Programming at 107.5 La Grande, visited with broadcast students. Gonzales stopped in to speak to Lance Liguez’s broadcast management class on Sept. 18.


Gonzalez is credited with taking  the station to No. 1 in the market among Spanish formats, He is also overseeing the launch of morning personality El Shoboy into national radio syndication.


Jane Slater, an anchor/reporter with local CBS affiliate, Channel 11, was guest speaker in Mark Tremayne's Current Issues class on Sept. 19.


"Jane is a former student of mine who's had an extensive career in broadcast news and sports, both in radio and television. She'll be talking about trends in broadcasting and also offering students on getting jobs and networking," Tremayne said. 


Darren "Daz" McCall, co-author of the New York Times best seller Storyscaping -- Stop Creating Ads, Start Creating Worlds will offer insight to Communication students at 2:15 and 3:30 p.m. Oct. 20 in Fine Arts 409.


McCall, who is chief brand strategy officer for SapientNitro, will discuss the difference between storytelling and storydoing, immersive online experiences and consumer engagement. See for more info.


Comm Day Oct. 22

Posted September 18, 2014 by Brian Horton in category other

The Department of Communication hosted one of the department's most popular events. Communication Day, an annual  event celebrating careers in the communication field,  was held Oct. 22 in University Center's Bluebonnet Ballroom. The theme of the 6th Annual Comm Day was Destination Success.

Comm Day offers students a chance to network with top communication professionals and distinguished alumni who are eager to share tricks of the trade and help students increase their potential of landing a coveted communication position.

"Comm Day is an opportunity for students to explore the rich and diverse field of communication, including advertising, broadcast, communication studies, communication technology, journalism and public relations," offered Dr. Andrew Clark, chair of this year's event. "Alumni roundtables will allow current students to interact with departmental alum who are now working in the Communication industry.

Fort Worth Mayor Betsy Price, a UTA alum, was keynote speaker for this year's event.

Destination Success also included a headshot booth, resume critiques and image consultation.

Panelists for Comm Day:


Ben Taylor - Digital Strategist at Rockfish
Claire Dunn - Account Executive at PAVLOV Agency

Comm Tech

Tanner Hearne - Director of Technology at The Music Bed
Carlos Cucalon - Front-End Web Developer at Hanley Wood

 Comm Studies

Shiraz Sultan - Creative, Interactive, and Marketing Recruiter at The BOSS Group
Gentrie Pool - Sales Director at Sterling Administration

Public Relations

Raquel Daisy – Communications Manager Better Business Bureau
Jessica Dowdy – Public Relations Director Ft. Worth Convention and Visitors Bureau


Jason Sickles – Senior Reporter Yahoo
Reese Dunklin – Investigative Reporter Dallas Morning New


Zoheb Hassanali – Photojournalist, KCEN Waco
Jason Foster – Remote Broadcast Engineer, Photographer – KTVT, Dallas/Ft. Worth

Students team up for service learning project

Posted September 18, 2014 by Barrie Hill in category students

students in melanie mason's oral interpretation of children's literature class skype with students at watauga middle school and grand prairie fine arts academy on a collaborative service learning project.
Students in Communication Studies Lecturer Melanie Mason’s Oral Interpretation of Children's Literature class are participating in a service learning project this semester with Theatre Arts classes at Watauga Middle School and Grand Prairie Fine Arts Academy.

The Communication students are working with sixth-, seventh- and eighth-graders on a reader’s theatre presentation. 

Mason says the students are connecting on a project for International Dot Day, a global celebration of creativity, courage and collaboration, according to the group’s website.

“My students have provided these middle schoolers with a Reader's Theatre version of the book and a set of questions based on Burke's Pentad Dramatism Analysis so that they can better understand the script for performance,” Mason explained. “These students will then perform for us and have a discussion together on the experience.”

The COMS students have been Skyping with the younger students during class time. The Grand Prairie students visited the UTA campus for  presentation of the group’s collaborative project in September.

“This project gave my students an opportunity to further explore interpretation of Children's Literature, both from an individual perspective and to watch the target demographic in action,” Mason added.

“We also provided some great resources to these middle school teachers and exposed these kids to a university experience at UTA. Go Mavs!” 


UTA Radio announces Rocktober Lineup

Posted September 18, 2014 by Barrie Hill in category other

UTA has announced the lineup for this fall’s Rocktober concert series.

The bands confirmed to play at UTA’s Library Mall include Lindby, DayWaster, Svenny Baby, and Dead Beat Poetry.

"The artists included are local bands from the Dallas-Fort Worth area, and some like Lindby have direct ties to UTA, with four out the five members graduates of the music department," explained BCMN lecturer Lance Liguez, who is also faculty sponsor of UTA Radio.

This will be kind of a homecoming for us,” Lindby’s Nick Goodrich said.   

One artist will perform at noon each Friday in October, with DayWaster kicking things off on Oct. 3.

The date coincides with College Radio Day, Liguez noted. The event aims to “raise a greater, international awareness of the many college and high school radio stations that operate around the world by encouraging people who would not normally listen to college radio to do so," according to the event's website. UTA Radio has participated in College Radio Day since its inception in 2011.

UTA is a student-run internet radio station that serves the UTA, and the world, with its eclectic mix of alternative/indie rock, sports, and student-produced entertainment. Check out UTA Radio online at and on

COMM grads landing top spots

Posted September 18, 2014 by Barrie Hill in category students

Department of Communication graduates in all disciplines are prepared for positions in many areas of Communication upon graduation.

"Our Comm grads are fortunate that classroom learning translates into job offers after graduation," commented Dr. Charla Markham Shaw, department chair. "Our alumni are moving into positions around the DFW Metroplex area and across the country after graduation. We are so proud of their accomplishments."

"We love to keep up with our students and hear where their education has taken them," Markham Shaw added. "It's exciting to hear how they are using their classroom learning in the job market."

Here's a round up of recent Department of Communication hires:

December 2006 BCMN and JOUR grad Candace Sweat is now working as a reporter for WRAL in Raleigh, NC.

August 2008 BCMN grad Daniel Armbruster is now a weekend co-anchor at 40/29 KHBS/KHOG-TV in Fayetteville/Fort Smith, Ark.!bQdBkL

December 2009 BCMN grad Matthew Linguist is now a full-time photographer at KCCO Fox 25 in Oklahoma City. Linquist worked previously as Digital Content Specialist at KXII in Sherman, TX.

December 2010 BCMN grad Chris Mead is working as Video Creative Services Manager for Texas Stars Hockey Club.

May 2014 ADVT graduate Himanshu Patel was hired at the Richards Group in Dallas as a brand manager.  

May 2013 BCMN grad Alyxandra (Crawford) Jones is working in production at CBS 11 alongside other UTA alum including May 2012 BCMN Sean Noell and May 2014 BCMN grad Omar Castillon.

August 2010 BCMN grad Francesca Washington is a reporter at KLTV in Tyler.

To submit alumni news, please send an e-mail with name, major, grad date and new position to We'd love to brag on your accomplishments!

Students gain experience with fall internships

Posted September 18, 2014 by Barrie Hill in category students

Department of Communication students participate in a variety of internships with local companies, non-profits and media outlets to gain invaluable experience before graduation. During the Fall 2014 semester, students are interning across the Dallas-Fort Worth area.  

Broadcast majors are interning with a local television, radio and media outlets. Jimena Fraga is interning with KDFW - FOX 4. Dylan Fry, Brandon Gordon, Marlene Herrera, Parker Hillis and Grant McKinley are working with CBS Radio this semester. Froylan Guerrero is interning with local affiliate CBS Channel 11. Derek Guthrie Kaufman is working with UTA Movin’ Mavs.

Public relations majors are also gaining practical experience this fall. Fabian Brown is working with Parkland Health and Hospital System in Dallas. Mary McKena Honnoll is interning with Solkissed Swimwear while Jasmina Kazic is at Vanessa Suarez is spending the semester at DFW International Airport, and Elizabeth Pugh is working with the North Central Texas Council of Governments, Elisa Tapia with Allied Integrated Marketing and ADVT and PREL double major Shelby Cummings with College Park District. JOUR and PREL double major Edrea Au is interning with the Red Balloon Network at Children’s Medical Center this fall.

Advertising majors have also landed coveted internships. Michael Colman II is interning with Moroch Partners and Hieu Duc Hoang with Atomic DC. Matthew Fomby is spending the semester with Texas Motor Speedway.

Journalism major Erik Velasquez is working with UTA Athletics.

Communication Technology major Michelle Do is spending the fall semester, working with Vietnamese Baptist Church of Arlington and Daniel Mancillas is working with Functional Food Center Inc.

Comm Studies major Kacie Everhart is interning with

COMM faculty engaged in research projects

Posted September 18, 2014 by Brian Horton in category faculty

Department of Communication Faculty engage in a variety of research projects throughout the year. Here's a round-up of what faculty and staff have been up to this past summer and during the Fall 2014 semester.

Dr. Shelley Wigley traveled to Chicago in June to attend the 2014 Academic Summit Conference “Storytelling at the Speed of Now.” The conference assists Dr. Wigley in her instruction of social media courses.

Dr. Chyng-yang Jang attended the Corporate Communication International Conference in Hong Kong this summer to present a paper entitled “Small Local Business on Facebook: An Initial Survey.”

Dr. Erika Pribanic-Smith traveled to Alexandria, VA in July to conduct research on political Journalism in the 19th-century South. Dr. Pribanic-Smith will also travel to St. Paul, MN in October to present an original research paper entitled “Assassination of Jason Clarke Swayze: Libel Press Freedom, and Editorial Civility in 1870s Kansas” at the American Journalism Historians Association. She will also be inducted as president of the organization.

Dr. Pribanic-Smith, Dr. Dustin Harp and Dr. Mark Tremayne traveled to Montreal, Canada in August to attend the Association for Education in Journalism and Mass Communication (AEJMC) Conference. The professors presented original research papers.

Dr. Tremayne’s paper, co-authored with Milad Minooie, is entitled “Using Social Media to Analyze Candidate performance and Public Opinion.” Dr. Harp’s paper is entitled “Alternate Spaces for Feminist Voices: Social Media’s Influence on CNN’s Steubenville Rape Coverage.”

Dr. Pribanic-Smith’s paper is entitled “Southern Values and the 1844 Election in the South Carolina Press.” A poster she created also won Best Poster in the History Division at the conference.

Dr. Harp and research collaborators from universities in Chile and the University of Oklahoma conducted new research that examined the presence of female columnists in U.S. opinion pages. The new research was recently published in the June issue of Journalism and Mass Communication Quarterly.

Broadcast lecturer Julian Rodriguez and 13 students representing UTA and UTA News en Espanol attended the National Association Hispanic Journalist Conference in San Antonio last month.

Dr. Thomas Christie traveled to Nice, France this month to present an original research paper at the World Association of Public Opinion Research Conference. Christie’s paper is entitled “Agenda Setting and Polling during Gun Control Debate- A Study of News Media Reporting of Public Opinion Polling and Social Media Trends during the Sandy Hook Tragedy.”

Dr. Charla Markham Shaw traveled to Austin Sept. 5 to serve as a panelist for the Experienced Chair’s Roundtable for New Department Chair Orientation.

Journalism lecturer Kim Jones traveled to Nashville, TN in Sept. to attend the Society of Professional Journalists’ Conference as a UTA representative and an officer of the Fort Worth chapter of the organization.

Broadcast Lecturer Lance Liguez will travel to Seattle, WA in October to attend the College Broadcasters, Inc. Conference. His panel, Essential Equipment: The Smartphone in News & Social Media, will explore recommended apps and techniques for use in student electronic news gathering. UTA Radio is also a finalist for a CBI award in the category of Best Sportscast.

Dr. Rachel Stohr will travel to Chicago, IL in Nov. to present an original research paper at the National Communication Association.