PR class visits City Hall as part of class project

By Alexis Verone

Tuesday March 10 was no ordinary classroom lecture for Professor Arien Rozelle’s Advanced PR & Campaign Management class. The students traded in their desks and notebooks for the busy streets of Rochester on their trip to City Hall in conjunction with their service-learning project.


Patrick Flanigan; New Media Editor for the City of Rochester Communications Bureau, left, discussing the PR plan for the Grove Place neighborhood Camille Audette, center, and Devon Donatello, right.

Patrick Flanigan, new media editor for the City Of Rochester Bureau of Communications, led the class in a discussion about campaigns being developed by the class for the city that center on the importance of Rochester’s diverse city culture.

The students were given a tour of the Communications department and a behind-the-scenes look at the organization, design, and production of the campaigns for the City of Rochester.  At the end of the tour, James Smith, director of communications, gave the students a description of his job and valuable tips for success in the industry.

Each group of students then was given an opportunity to ask questions, present a progress report on their current campaign strategies, and receive feedback from Flanigan.


The whole class in the City Hall atrium with Patrick Flanigan, New Media Editor for the City of Rochester Communications Bureau, far right


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Local professionals participate in public relations panel

By Julia Laude

Local professionals in the communication field participated in a series of public relations panels called Meet the Media where they spoke with current St. John Fisher College students about their experiences.

The Meet the Media events took place on three different days during professor Arien Rozelle’s public relations classes and one on the evening of Feb. 26. The panelists that night included Channel 8 news producer Scott Pukos, City Newspaper Editor Jake Clapp, first audience analyst for the Democrat and Chronicle Len LaCara, co-founder of The Rochesteriat Stefanie Schwingle, and Channel 8 anchor Mark Gruba.


From left to right: Scott Pukos, Jake Clapp, Len LaCara, Stefanie Schwingle and Mark Gruba.

The panelists spoke about the many aspects of their jobs including what a typical day would be. Gruba and LaCara agreed that there is some pattern to their job, while the others said there was none. “I think one thing that is typical about most days, for me at least, is that I love what I’m doing. Every day I walk in and I get to work with the greatest group of journalists in Rochester and part of what I get to do every day is help them be better,” LaCara said.

The panelists also discussed what makes a good news release stand out and what keeps the reader interested. Taking the time to make sure your work is well written and easy to read is a simple way to impress your reader. “The first thing I look at is the writing. We’re all writers, if something is not well written, if it has typos, grammatical errors, it would be something that would not appeal to me,” Pukos said.

At the end of the discussion, the professionals gave the students some final advice. As technology grows, students and young professionals need to be open minded and willing to try new things. “Start somewhere and see where it goes. If someone says ‘Hey you’re a great writer, you’re good at this,’ explore that opportunity and practice that,” Schwingle said.

Many students from the different Media and Communication Department student media organizations came to learn from these professionals. PRIMA member Jake Allen said, “It was great that the many different media outlets could show up to give us feedback about their jobs and their experiences in the field. The thing that stood out the most to me was whatever we choose to do, we should do something that our heart tells us to do.”

After the panel discussion, students and the professionals participated in a networking event.

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Media and Communication students take New York

By Julia Laude

Groups from St. John Fisher College’s media and communication department traveled throughout New York state just before and during spring break to gain knowledge to better themselves and the department.

Professor Dr. Todd Sodano, Cardinal Media adviser Marie Villa and professor Arien Rozelle traveled with students on the various trips.

Joint Journalism and Communication Historians Conference

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From left to right: (back) Todd Sodano, Ashley Brown, Katherine Lee, Doug Szczesny, Chris Genrich (front) Allen Thomas, Julia Stanchus, Laura Polisseni, Rob Sweet

Sodano began bringing students to the Joint Journalism and Communication Historians conference in New York City during his second year at St. John Fisher College in 2010. The trip originally was meant for students to record the conference for promotion. Students interviewed the organizers and participants as well as capturing video to create news packages.

However, this is the first year that the group didn’t participate in the conference. Feedback was given from previous students, saying that touring neighborhoods is a better idea. This way students can see potential housing if the opportunity for a job or internship were to happen. “Even if they have no desire to move there, [the trip helps] just to get an idea on what career opportunities that exist if you’re a media and communication major,” Sodano said.

As well as touring neighborhoods, the group visited film and television organizations and museums. Students attended tours of NBC studios, the Syfy Network, the Molecule, and the Museum of the Moving Image.

College Media Advisers National College Media Convention

When Villa began working at St. John Fisher College in 2012, she was was told that she could bring five students to the College Media Advisers National College Media convention.

This conference is a three day event during which students attend sessions to bring knowledge back to the Cardinal Courier. There are over 300 such programs that students can attend and they’re in class from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.. These classes discuss a variety of topics including newspapers, magazines, sports, photography, yearbooks and broadcasting.

Live tweeting is another aspect Villa wants students to do. With the growth of social media and technology it’s important to understand how content is formatted and shared. “I want them to see how important live tweeting is and I also want them to get the idea and show students what they are doing outside of school,” Villa said.

Marist College’s PRSSA Developing A Well Rounded Professional Conference


From left to right: (back) Evren Durmaz (front) Chloe Smith, Allie Guido, Arien Rozelle, Jake Allen, Sarah Fredendall, Morgen Irwin

This was Rozelle’s first time attending the Marist College’s PRSSA conference. She was excited to hear from all the panelists on this year’s theme of Developing A Well Rounded Professional, and to bring students to another school to meet their peers that are going to be going into the same industry.

“It’s an opportunity for students to hear panelists in the field of public relations, to meet other students interested in public relations, and meet other PRSSA groups, and other public relations firm groups,” Rozelle said.

Students participated in discussions with Marist college public relations professors and professionals in the field. The topics spoken about included sports, food, career and finding your niche.

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Photo, DCT students present show of works at Welcome Center

The Digital Cultures and Technologies Student Art Show is currently on exhibition in the Patricia O’Keefe Ross Gallery in the Welcome Center.

All students, faculty, and staff are invited to the reception from 5:30-7:30 p.m. Thursday March 12 in the gallery.

The artwork in this room comes from three classes associated with the Digital Cultures and Technologies program at St. John Fisher.

The prints were produced by students enrolled in Photo I: Art Photography (COMM/ARTS 236) in the fall and in Digital Art (ARTS 112) this semester. Professor Heather Erwin teaches these classes, which include substantial work in digital manipulation and associated art techniques.

The installations throughout the space were created by students currently enrolled in Algorithmic and Data Art (DIGC/ARTS 259), taught by Professor Jeremy Sarachan.  The works explore graphics through the lens of student-designed interfaces. Whether it’s pressing a button, turning a knob, taking off your shoes and using your feet, or grabbing a piece of fruit, visitors will consider how removing all the gloss and perfection of modern technology—exposing the wires and the circuitry—help us to better comprehend how technology works and how it’s working us.

The show runs 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. weekdays through March 25.

Students whose work will be on display are:

  • Hayley Barber
  • Stephanie Beiter
  • MarcAnthony Bucci
  • Nick Carmardo
  • Kate Coleman
  • Jonathon Dean
  • Devon Donatello
  • Justyn Dugan
  • Craig Heier
  • Caitlin Higgins
  • Morgen Irwin
  • Marc Iseneker
  • Katherine Lee
  • Michael Magee
  • Jeff Mangiafesto
  • Quinton Marchand
  • Ariel Ortega
  • Derek Palmer (recent graduate)
  • Luciano Pietropaolo
  • Katie Weidman

Dr. Catherine Sweet, Arts and Science Assessment Coordinator, served as consultant for the project.

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Prospective high school students visit campus

By Julia Laude

High school students from New York state participated in St. John Fisher College’s Media and Communication Department’s Spend-a-Day program to experience a day within the major.

During the day the prospective students participated in the department’s clubs as well as talking with staff about classes. They created their own front page of the Cardinal CourierScreen Shot 2015-03-04 at 19.15.43 and a segment of Vegas Rules for Cardinal Television. Visiting assistant professor Arien Rozelle talked about public relations and media management while associate professor Jeremy Sarachan talked about digital cultures and technologies.

While students worked with the different department organizations, parents attended presentations on career preparation and the importance of a liberal arts education. Internship director Lauren Vicker talked about career seminar class and the internship program students take. During the career preparation discussion, Associate Professor Dougie Bicket talked primarily about his experiences with helping students to analyze, and think critically about, the power of visual images in society.

For lunch, students and their parents sat with current media and communication students to talk about the department in more detail.

The students ended their day with a student-to-student panel where they could ask current students in the major questions. After closing remarks from professors, students and parents were given the chance to take a tour of campus with an admissions tour guide.

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Resident scholar discusses British influence on U.S. television

By Julia Laude

As a part of St. John Fisher College’s First Friday Lecture Series, resident media scholar Tom Proietti gave a speech about the British Broadcasting Corporation and how television had to be changed for American viewers.

The way the British people speak and think can make it difficult to understand their media, Proietti said. He also spoke about the differences in British culture and how it’s presented in television. During the time television was first beginning to grow in America, the masses were made up of immigrants. Proietti explained that the linguistics of British television needed to be changed so Americans could understand. He then showed a clip from Monty Python’s Flying Circus to show the differences.


Tom Proietti speaking about British television.

The number of people who watch television in America is slowly decreasing. According to Nielsen’s Total Audience Report, “About 2.6 million households are now ‘broadband only,’ meaning they don’t subscribe to cable or pick up a broadcast signal.” Americans are picking up British shows while Britain is sticking to its own television series.

Alumni from the college as well as students came to hear Proietti speak. “It was great and very informative. He a funny guy, I wish he could’ve had longer to talk. I was very interested in the whole thing, ” Gregory Pokriki, a Fisher student said about his time at the event.

Proietti’s next trip to England will be in January 2016 when he will be traveling there with Cayuga Community College’s study abroad program. Students in that program visit institutions such as the British Broadcasting Corporation, The National Theatre, and the British Film Institute’s film library and the Mediatheque.

First Friday Lectures are held in the Skalny Welcome Center located at the main entrance of the college. The next lecture will feature Doctor Carolyn Vacca and is scheduled for March 6th. For more information or to register for the next First Friday Lecture, contact the Alumni Office.

Video version of this story, as reported for the Cardinal Courier

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Professor offers media perspective on love

By Julia Laude

Visiting Assistant Professor of Communication Arien Rozelle participated in an interdisciplinary panel discussion about love that took place the day before Valentine’s Day, speaking about love in her research field.

Arien + Tim

Arien Rozelle

The other panelists in the discussion were Associate Professor of  Philosophy David White, Assistant Professor of Chemistry Alexey Ignatchenko, and Assistant Professor of Political Science Kathleen Donovan.

Many topics were discussed during the panel including the concept of platonic love, the chemistry of love, how love is compared to anger and how technology affects communication about love.

Rozelle spoke about the differences of computer mediated communication and face to face communication and the effect it has on our relationships.

She explained that the social presence theory, developed by John Short, Ederyn Williams and Bruce Christie when people first began developing relationships with text based communication through the internet, says that we can’t develop strong enough relationships because we don’t get non-verbal cues like we would in face to face communication.

“What someone looks like, what they’re wearing, the way they smell, all these different things give us cues as to whether or not we like them, but when we communicate via text, we don’t get that,” Rozelle said.

Zachary Cedruly, a student who attended the event, agreed with the discussion on the social presence theory. “I’ve always thought my parents have had such a strong bond, and I’ve had strong bonds before  but never as strong as theirs,” he said. “I’m almost concerned that we’ll lose that feeling of face to face communication in our generation, where it’s more difficult to do.”

With the development of social networking, we are able to get a lot more non verbal cues via photos, videos and emojis, than what was possible before, Rozelle also said. She noted the work of Joseph Walther, who challenged the social presence theory with the his social information processing theory. This theory says that people could develop relationships just as strong via computer mediated communication as face to face could, but it just takes longer.

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MediaComm students take on London!


Fisher Media and Communication students at the Roman baths in the ancient city of Bath, England. Back row from left, Morgen Irwin, Colby Brown, Olivia Rotondo and Julia Laude; front row Alexandra Hristodoulou and Allie Guido


Olivia Rotondo practices her “royal wave” in front of the gate to Buckingham Palace

Six students from the Department of Media and Communication, and 11 Fisher students overall, were part of an annual winter-session travel-study trip to the London, England in early January.

The trip is organized by Cayuga Community College, but has a strong Fisher connection through both student participation and because Department of Media and Communication professor Jack Rosenberry is a co-instructor for the Media in the UK class that is part of the program.

Overall, the trip included more than 60 students along with faculty and staff from CCC. Media in the UK was one of six different courses offered as part of the program.

The Media in the UK class included Fisher MediaComm students Colby Brown, Olivia Rotondo, Allie Guido, Morgen Irwin, Alexandra Hristodoulou and Julia Laude and also Fisher student Hannah Stein, a psychology major. Other Fisher students were involved with the Criminal Justice, Sociology and Art classes offered as part of the trip.

For the media students, the two-week program included visits to key media locations such as the BBC, ITV studios (to see a show produced), the British Film Institute, and the European office of the Wall Street Journal. For all of the visitors the trip also included visits to historic sites such as Stonehenge, Bath, Windsor Castle and Westminster Abbey, as illustrated in this photo slideshow


Students re-enact the famous album cover of the Beatles “Abbey Road” album in the crosswalk near the Abbey Road studio where the album photo was taken


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PRIMA takes on new projects under new adviser

This is the last in a series of posts reviewing the work of student media groups in the Media and Communication Department from fall semester, and looking ahead to spring semester.

By Julia Laude

The PRIMA Group is St. John Fisher College’s student-run advertising, public relations and integrated-marketing agency. The group provides pro-bono work which includes event planning, brand strategy, and promotions to clients on and off the campus. PRIMA strives to give students the experience of working in an agency culture by encouraging exchange of ideas among members and working off each other’s strengths.

As one of the four managing partners, Chloe Smith holds the position of director of creative services. Under each partner and department  — the others are Accounts, Public Relations and Events, and Marketing and Sales —  there is a set of committees which the director must look after. “I am responsible for delegating tasks to those committees and overseeing them until completion ensuring that all of the work is high quality,” Smith said, explaining that all areas of the project are consistent to the brand identity and strategy.

Smith says that PRIMA’s biggest change this semester was bringing in a new adviser, Professor Arien Rozelle. “On top of her great amount of knowledge and connections, the drive and enthusiasm she has pushed our agency to a new level and our agency has grown rapidly. She has helped me grow so much as a leader,” Smith said.

Other changes to the group included a revamping of the organization’s structure, creating committees to ensure cross-pollination among members to increase efficiency and effectiveness, as well as expanding the group’s client base to the Rochester community and not just the Fisher community.

Along with a 15 student increase, a major success that PRIMA has had was working with the Department of Media and Communication. “It’s not every day that students get to work and provide for the department. It’s such a blessing and we are very fortunate that they given our students the opportunity,” Smith said.

In the spring semester, PRIMA so far has plans to work with four clients, within the Fisher community and in the Rochester area. PRIMA will be doing work for the Media and Communication Department and Lavery Library and also plans to work with Gilda’s Club Rochester and Rochester School 43.

As part of the work for Gilda’s Club, PRIMA also be hosting the second annual Gilda’s Cup event, a the Collegiate Comedy and Improv Competition, at Fisher on April 10. “We are planning to get six Rochester-area colleges involved to compete,” Smith says.

Smith also says that PRIMA will be more active on social media and increasing posts to the Total Fisher Move #TFM blog, which was created about the Fisher community and highlighting what Fisher students are talking about.

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PRSSA expands ranks, activities under Irwin’s leadership

This is the third in a series of posts reviewing the work of student media groups in the Media and Communication Department from fall semester, and looking ahead to spring semester.

By Julia Laude

The Public Relations Student Society of America (PRSSA) was created to advise students who are interested in public relations by enhancing their knowledge and developing highly qualified, well-prepared professionals.

Fisher established its PRSSA Chapter in the spring semester of 2007 and since its inception, the group has gone through many changes. Morgen Irwin is the current president of the PRSSA chapter at St. John Fisher College.

Over the past year PRSSA has made major changes. From the start Irwin has dedicated her time to bettering the group by taking over the Facebook and Twitter while also creating a blog. Her other duties include organizing meetings and recruiting members.

Irwin said that when she joined PRSSA, the group was not very active on campus. Her main goal when she became president was to have the group become affiliated with SGA again and increase the number of members in the group. Irwin says these have been her biggest achievements this semester.

Irwin loves seeing new faces at each meeting. To be recognized nationally, the group must find 10 members who are willing to pay $50 in annual dues. She tries to maintain a fair atmosphere so it’s easier to find those members. It’s really important to her because Fisher is a small school and being recognized by nationals is a big deal.

For the spring semester, Irwin says there are many programs and workshops being developed. She says PRSSA is in the works of having a collaboration with PRIMA while also working with PRSSA groups from RIT and Brockport. Working with the other PRSSA groups, they will be hosting a three tier workshop, one at each location. Each workshop with be formed around topics such as LinkedIn and resumes.

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