A photo of a woman speaking while standing in front of a white background. In front of her, a man with a microphone holds it above her head, a woman points a video camera at her and a man stands to the side.
A new master’s degree concentration in mass communications will provide students with instruction in entrepreneurship and media management skills. (File photo)

VCU launches online master’s degree concentration in media leadership

The program will provide leadership and management skills for recent graduates as well as experienced professionals who want to upgrade their skills.

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Virginia Commonwealth University is launching a new mass communications master’s degree concentration in media leadership that will prepare students for leadership roles in the news media and other communications fields.

The program will provide students with instruction in entrepreneurship and media management skills, as well as soft skills such as time management and best practices for leading a diverse, equitable and inclusive workplace.

“We took a lot of time to develop this concentration, and during that process we conducted focus groups with industry professionals to find out what skills are lacking,” said Karen McIntyre, Ph.D., co-director of graduate studies for the Richard T. Robertson School of Media and Culture in the VCU College of Humanities and Sciences. “Then we built our curriculum to address those skills.”

This program can suit busy people who are working or have other obligations, as it is entirely online, asynchronous and has options to attend full time or part time, said McIntyre, an associate professor of multimedia journalism. The program can be completed in as little as 13 months.

The master’s degree with a concentration in media leadership is designed to prepare students to work in a highly competitive and multiple-platform (print, broadcast and digital) news environment. It is targeted at recent graduates with an undergraduate degree in mass communications or a related field, as well as at experienced media professionals who want to upgrade their professional skills.

Upon successful completion of the media and leadership program, students will have an understanding of media leadership skills, including entrepreneurial, managerial and writing competencies that demonstrate they are capable of leading a diverse, equitable and inclusive workplace.

“We’re excited to unveil our newest addition to the graduate program lineup: the media leadership concentration,” said Peyton Rowe, professor and director of the Robertson School. “This curriculum is all about nurturing the next generation of media leaders. The graduate studies team at Robertson has done a fantastic job crafting a curriculum that blends real-world know-how with 21st-century career opportunities. We continue to keep the working professional top of mind in our graduate offerings. Like our integrated communication track, this new option is perfect for folks juggling work and life – offering online flexibility to help them reach their career goals.”

Early applications for the inaugural class of the master’s degree with a media leadership concentration are due March 15, but individuals can continue to apply through May 5. The first classes begin in June. To apply or for more information, visit robertson.vcu.edu/academics/graduate/ms-in-mass-communications/media-leadership/.