Collaboration, Research and Diversity All Planned for the Future of Murrow College
The final two candidates for the dean of Washington State University’s Edward R. Murrow College of Communication, Andrea Miller and Bruce Pinkleton, both stressed collaboration in presentations they held earlier this week.
Miller met with faculty, students and staff on Feb. 12 to discuss her vision for the college. Along with expanding research, she also set collaboration with various units at WSU and increasing diversity in faculty and student population as her goals.
“A diverse student body makes us better,” she said. Miller plans to target high schools with a large diverse population to recruit incoming freshman. She would also like to see the amount of scholarships available for minorities increase.
Pinkleton shared his vision to the public on Feb. 15. He focused on research and new teaching opportunities to grow undergraduate admission.
“Students are already coming in knowing how to do a lot of what teach them. We need to add value to what students want to learn and create courses that directly fit into their interests,” he said.
Pinkleton plans to do that by expanding areas of focus for students to major in within the college. International journalism, sports journalism, digital media production and communication leadership studies all fit into his plan.
Like Miller, Pinkleton also supports having a diverse faculty and student body in the college. He said that the college needs to take action into becoming more diverse because “science tells us that genetic diversity supports a species.”
Collaboration was something both candidates saw in their vision. They seek to grow student learning opportunities with other colleges at WSU such as the Carson College of Business and the Voiland College of Engineering and Architecture.
Marvin Marcelo, a member of the university search advisory committee, supported their goals to create collaborative efforts across campus. “Communication plays a key role in so many places. There’s a natural collaboration that gives students many practical learning opportunities,” he said.
The two candidates also advocated supporting and growing research funding for faculty and graduate students.
Marcelo said that this was exactly the type of person they were looking for. The committee decided that research, student practice in the working world and student involvement within the college were the areas that the new dean needed to focus on.
That’s a promising vision for WSU graduate students like Colin Storm who said that he and his fellow students are “underfunded and living at poverty levels.” He believes that it’s important for the college to have a leader who can go out and solicit donations so more graduate students can be recruited and retained.
Storm said he appreciates Pinkleton’s passion for graduate studies and has confidence in him, but also thinks Miller is an excellent choice for the undergraduate program because of her media background and experience at other institutions.
Pinkleton is currently the interim dean of the college. WSU’s Office of the Provost website’s biography on him says he has helped student success with enhancements in career-service programs, expansions in international learning and collaborative efforts with the Carson College and Voiland College.
Professor at the Murrow College, Douglas Hindman appreciates Pinkleton’s work and shares some of his ideas, like creating a convergence news room that would serve as a television station for the college. “He’s done very well. He stepped up when we needed somebody in that position and I’m grateful to him for doing that,” he said.
Hindman also sees promise with Miller. “She brings a lot of hope to the college. She likes to see things get done and has a decisive, results-oriented approach,” he said.
Miller is an associate dean in the Manship School of Mass Communication at Louisiana State University. According to her biography from the Office of the Provost’s website, she was an award-winning television producer for a decade. She is also a professor and teaches courses in crisis communication, broadcast and multi-media journalism.
A final decision will be made by the Office of the Provost between the end of March and the beginning of April, according to Marcelo.
Bruce Pinkleton (No interview, presentation only)
Andrea Miller (No interview, presentation only)
Douglas Hindman: 509-335-6149| firstname.lastname@example.org
Marvin Marcelo: 509-335-8835| email@example.com
Colin Storm: 509-280-6611| firstname.lastname@example.org