TU Advertising Program Provides Real World Opportunities

SUPER BOWL STUDY: Students in TU adjunct professor Bill Hinkle’s class gathered at the Hurricane Hut on campus to watch the 2008 Super Bowl together and, more importantly, to discuss the advertisements during commercial breaks. TU launched the Ad Program this semester, a program designed to give communication students more real-world experience in their chosen communication field.

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The University of Tulsa has launched a new advertising certificate, The Ad Program, that aims to prepare students to enter the workforce by combining the professional aspects of advertising and public relations with the creative applications inherent to the field.

The Ad Program will engage students in real-world projects by working directly with advertising and public relations agencies as well as business and non-profit clients. The program, which began enrolling students this semester, takes an interdisciplinary approach by offering classes in advertising, public relations, graphic design and broadcast audio/video production. Courses are taught by full-time professors as well as adjunct professors with extensive professional experience. In addition to traditional courses, seminar and workshop courses will be taught by local and regional advertising icons.

“The only way to get students ready for a professional career is to put them in the field and give them a project in a real environment,” says Teresa Valero, director of The Ad Program and applied associate professor of art/graphic design at TU. “In an industry as dynamic as advertising, this program gives students the right balance of theory and practical application.”

The program’s advisory board is filled with leaders from prominent Tulsa businesses, public relations and advertising firms and multimedia companies including Steve Turnbo, Jim Langdon and Forrest Cameron. The board has already forged multiple internship partnerships with Tulsa-based and regional companies to give students experience outside the classroom that they hope will create job opportunities.

“The overwhelming support from Tulsa’s most recognized communication industry leaders has created momentum for this exciting academic endeavor,” says Tom Benediktson, dean of the Henry Kendall College of Arts and Sciences.

Additional support has already been pledged from numerous professional organizations including the Tulsa Advertising Federation, the Art Director’s Club of Tulsa, the Tulsa Chapter of Public Relations Society of America and American Women in Radio and Television. The Ad Program at TU will create an industry job fair, promotional partnerships and a gala fundraiser to create funds for competitive student events and up-to-date computer software.

The Ad Program at the University of Tulsa was created by Benediktson; Valero; David Moncrief, applied associate professor of communication; John Coward, chair of the TU communication department; and Bill Hinkle, adjunct professor of advertising and president of Hinkle Creative Services, Inc.

For more information, contact the Department of Communication at (918) 631-2541 or (918) 631-3513.

Updated 02-18-2008

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