Resident scholar discusses British influence on U.S. television

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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Cardinal Courier adjusts content strategy

This is the second 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 Cardinal Courier is St. John Fisher College’s student run newspaper. The Courier went through many changes in the fall semester with the help of Media Advisor Marie Villa,  Editor in Chief Emily Mein and Managing Editor Olivia Lopez.

Villa, Mein and Lopez have many responsibilities when creating a new issue of the newspaper. Mein and Lopez help the staff with story ideas and then edit all of the stories. Helping students write editorial content and lay out pages is what Villa says is her biggest responsibility.

Recently the Courier has done some aesthetic changes along with many content changes. “Online’s more of a focus for us now than it was before,” Mein says as the Courier has done a lot of online coverage this semester, that it hadn’t done before. “Content wise we added some columns, and changed the sports section to focus on stories ideas and profiles and less game coverage.” The other changes have included adding a calendar, a Do It Yourself section, and instead of in-person interviews for Campus Chatter, Cardinal Chatter was introduced on Twitter.

This semester the Courier added an editorial to its pages, which Mein says has been a success. The staff has received a lot of response from it, both good and bad. “People are reading, people are talking about us. We see the paper coming off the racks a lot faster than it has before,” Mein says, agreeing with Villa that she sees students are taking the newspaper seriously.

A challenge for the Courier staff has been meeting deadlines. “Since I don’t have a class this semester that feeds into the paper, getting writers to stick to their writing and stories has been difficult,” Villa says. “We’re a team and if one person doesn’t do their stuff it affects everybody else.”

Mein adds that deadlines are a big issue with people not getting their interviews done on time. Weekly meetings for each section and the senior staff has allowed for a dialogue between the editors and the writers to improve communication and ensure things can get done in a timely manner.

For spring semester, the Courier wants to continue with investigative writing and continue to write hard news stories for the newspaper. Also planned for spring is the latest edition of C Magazine, an annual glossy lifestyle publication produced by the Courier.

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CTV launches new show, seeks new e-board

This is the first 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. Watch for future posts about the Cardinal Courier, PRIMA Group and PRSSA.

By Julia Laude

Cardinal Television strives to provide students the opportunity to gain experience outside of the classroom by creating informational programming about the Fisher community that is played on campus channel 12. As the fall semester ended, Cardinal Television was discussing changes for the upcoming spring semester.

One of the co-presidents of Cardinal Television, Laura Polisseni, produces the biweekly Fisher News program. As producer, Polisseni is responsible for story ideas and assignments, and assigning roles for each show. Each member of Cardinal Television is assigned a new role each show so every student has experience with each part of the production process. She also has to make sure a Cardinal Television club member goes to meetings with SGA, reviews the budget, and makes sure the other executive board members are doing their job.

This year Cardinal Television added a new sports show called Fisher Football Focus, produced and hosted by Kyle Lumsden, which featured coaches and players.

Polisseni says that Fisher Football Focus has been a success this semester for Cardinal Television. “It can be hard to get shows out if there’s not a lot of participation. He always had his guests ready,” Polisseni said, in explaining how Lumsden always finished his shows on time.

With the new semester starting, CVT is in the process of getting a new executive board. The current executive board members are seniors and are looking to people involved with Fisher News and the other shows to see who is interested in executive board positions.

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Career seminar students network with pros in final class

By Julia Laude

As their final class, students in Careers Seminar (COMM 322), were given the opportunity to practice their elevator speeches with local professionals in a networking event.

The Nov. 25 event included John Hawks from Wegmans, Mare Millow from the Arts Center at Nazareth College, Katie Redmond from Dixon Schwabl, and Tabita Torres Rodriguez from United Way.


From left to right: John Hawks, Mare Millow, Katie Redmond, and Tabita Torres Rodriguez

Students were able to connect with each professional and at the end of the event, the visitors gave feed about how well the speeches were delivered. Hawks emphasized how time can easily slip away, “Establish who you are and what your interests are right up front,” he said. When speaking to someone your elevator speech should vary based on who you’re talking to. Being concise and flexible with your interests shows the potential value you have to the person you’re speaking with.

Redmond gave two pieces of advice. “Keep your speech positive, especially when meeting someone for the first time,” she said, as well as suggesting to keep the conversation light and at a high level.

She also said that the way a speech is framed is also important. It’s better to say what experiences you have rather than what you want. She recommended focusing on “what makes you interested in PR if you have no experience with it.” If you don’t have actual background with something, start by saying you’re interested in getting an internship with PR. Frame your speech that way so the person you’re talking to doesn’t perceive you as having more experience than you do.

All of the professionals agreed that students who work hard are the ones who get the jobs. They are the people who gave time to better themselves by having multiple internships and going to work when they didn’t want to.

The visitors also recommended taking as many internships as possible. It gives you the edge above so many more people and you will be noticed. “Internships are really important because you are getting something out of it, even if it’s not a paycheck, and will make you more marketable,” Millow said.

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Agency HR director offers tips for job interviews

By Julia Laude

The human resources director at Butler/Till media agency, Amy Moyer, presented her job interview tips to Dr. Lauren Vicker’s interviewing class in a class visit last month.

Resumes are one of the first things that employers see, so it’s important to make a good impression, Moyer said. Attention to detail is something she frequently sees a lack of in resumes, she added. Each resume and cover letter should be tailored toward the position you are applying to. To avoid mistakes, multiple people should look at your resume to give you feedback before you send it out, she said.

As technology continues to grow, making sure you stand out is a vital part in creating your resume. Resumes are now sent frequently via e-mail, giving you only a small space to impress a potential employer. According to Moyer, resumes need to be interesting. If the top half of your resume is boring, then it’s likely the bottom half will not be read.

The next step after submitting your resume is attending the interview. Making eye contact with the interviewer when answering questions shows enthusiasm about the position you are applying for. Moyer says that when interviewing, she looks for candidates who don’t lose their smile throughout the interview.

Sending thank you notes, especially handwritten notes, are also being taken into account. They let the hiring employer that you are excited about the position and the company. Moyer emphasized that thank you notes should be sent out no later than 48 hours after the interview.

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Sports journalism, new radio course among spring course lineup

By Julia Laude

Fisher Communication/Journalism alums Jeff DiVeronica and Rob Linton have made names for themselves in local media, respectively, as a sports writer for the Democrat and Chronicle and as a disc jockey and general manager for WGMC Jazz 90.1 FM radio.

In the spring 2015 semester they will be returning to their alma mater to help today’s students learn about the topics they pursue professionally.

Sports Journalism

DiVeronica has taught Sports Journalism (COMM 310) before, but it hasn’t been offered since spring 2013. His main goal in the course is to help mold a new generation of journalists in an ever-changing business that requires more fast-and-smart thinking and versatile skills than ever before.

The course will touch on ethical issues of sports reporting in today’s work and analyze different types of approaches to writing about sports. The strategies on how to cultivate and build relationships with sources, how to handle tough interviews after games or on difficult subject matter and public speaking will also be included.

New this year, students will be learning how to supplement their writing with video packages. Students will be responsible for writing a sports feature, preview of a game and a game story along with a column and in-depth piece.

Every student is required to have taken COMM 301, News Writing and Reporting, as a prerequisite.

Radio Performance and Production

Linton also has been an adjunct instructor in the department for about 2 years, teaching both Speech Communication (COMM 250) and History of Radio and Television (COMM 264).

But in spring 2015 he will be offering a new special topics course (COMM 290) on the subject of Radio Performance and Production. He sees it as an opportunity for students interested in not only radio, but forms of new media as well.

As a station manager Linton says, “Many people feel that ‘radio is dead’ but I will tell you that the industry is alive and well.” The industry has a need for qualified candidates for both on-air and production work.

Students taking this course will have the opportunity to learn about the radio industry through hands on practice. The skills being taught will allow students to expand their expertise in many aspects of journalism, public relations/marketing and broadcasting.

The course will be project based, so students will be responsible for projects due throughout the course, rather than listening to lecture. These may include public service announcements, podcasts, newscasts, sports programs, interviews and more. Some work may air on WGMC.

Students will also be able to propose projects throughout the semester that they too would like to do.

No prerequisites are required to register for the course. It will be held from 6:15-9:20 p.m. Tuesdays, to give the students a large time block to work on projects.

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