Building on the work St. Bonaventure University students are already doing in broadcast and video journalism, the university will begin offering a Bachelor of Arts degree in Broadcast Journalism this fall.
The program was approved Wednesday, Feb. 27, by the New York State Education Department.
Students enrolled in the Broadcast Journalism major will learn communications fundamentals through the core Jandoli School of Communication curriculum, and then focus on broadcast news-related classes. The combined course of study will prepare them for communication careers in a variety of fields specializing in video and audio media.
“The Jandoli School faculty seeks to boldly equip our young broadcast journalists with a 21st century education in ethical, visual and urgent digital communication,” said Aaron Chimbel, dean of the school. “The faculty felt the broadcast journalism major reflected a lot of the great work our students are already doing in broadcast and video journalism and that the new major would better highlight this work.”
With a staunch journalism program that was founded 70 years ago, St. Bonaventure has a large alumni pool who work in broadcast journalism, including Kerry Byrnes, Class of 1993, a producer for the “Today” show on NBC; Neal Cavuto, ’80, news anchor, commentator and business journalist for Fox News; Joe Enoch, ’06, NBC News investigative producer; Charlie Specht, ’10, chief investigator for 7 Eyewitness News, the ABC affiliate in Buffalo, N.Y.; and Christy Kern, ’11, news anchor at WIVB-TV, the CBS affiliate in Buffalo.
Chimbel said alumni broadcast journalists were consulted on the need for the major and the content of the program.
“They believe the strong foundation we offer already is a great asset to students,” said Chimbel.
Hands-on experience has always been a hallmark of the Jandoli School, where students have for years produced weekly SBU-TV broadcasts. The school has recently expanded the reach of its broadcasts throughout the Buffalo-Niagara region through Spectrum TV.
“The Broadcast Journalism program plays off of St. Bonaventure’s long history of journalism and is the culmination of the university’s recent investments in updated broadcast technology and faculty,” said Joseph E. Zimmer, Ph.D., provost and vice president for Academic Affairs. “Our new dean, Aaron Chimbel, also brings his expertise, experience, leadership and vision to this new initiative.”
Job postings for bachelor’s-level professionals with broadcast journalism skills increased 57 nationwide and 52 percent regionally between 2016 and 2018, according to EAB, a best-practices firm in the education industry.
For more information about the Broadcast Journalism program, visit www.sbu.edu/Broadcast.
This is the second new major added to the School of Communication’s curriculum this year. In early February, a Bachelor of Arts degree in Sports Media was approved by the state Education Department.
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