Comm and PR Students Experience Collaborative Conference

Comm and PR Students Experience Collaborative Conference

From April 14 -16, 2024, Communication and Public Relations students from Carroll showcased their research at the annual Northwest Communication Association (NWCA) conference held in Coeur d'Alene, Idaho. The 2024 conference theme was "Empathy at the Heart of Communication: Genuine Connection through Understanding and Care," and attracted professors and students from both graduate and undergraduate programs across the Pacific Northwest and Mountain West.

"NWCA was my first experience presenting a research paper at a conference. I didn't quite know my expectations heading to Idaho, but it surely exceeded all of them! Besides the academic portions of the conference which were amazing and very edifying, getting to bond with my peers and explore Coeur D'Alene were equally as rewarding. Thank you to Dr. Jones, Dr. Hansen and everyone who made this incredible opportunity possible!" ~ Kaitlyn Ruch, sophomore, Helena, MT

Carroll College's participants included students and faculty who presented on panels such as "Antagonism at the Heart of Media: A Genuine Lack of Connection, Understanding, and Care" and "Home Training: Children's Media and Culture." Four Communication/Public Relations majors, Katie Bell, Jamie Burbank, Kacy Clements, and Kaitlyn Ruch, presented a total of five papers developed in their upper-division courses. Professors Charlotte Jones and Alan Hansen also contributed to the discussions on these panels.

"Being able to attend NWCA and presenting the research papers that I conducted was such an amazing experience. We also listened to other panels; it was very interesting to see other undergraduate research and get inspiration for future conferences." ~ Jamie Burbank, junior, Helena, MT

"I thought the conference was really fun and a great opportunity to showcase our hard work. It was so much fun to hear from other students as well and attend panels on so many interesting topics." ~ Kacy Clements, junior, Heron, MT

Professors Jones and Hansen have been instrumental in mentoring students and facilitating their participation at the NWCA conference annually since 2009, missing only two years. Additionally, Professor Hansen has played a role in NWCA's leadership, serving on its executive board from 2017 to 2020 and as its president in 2019.

"The Communication Studies faculty couldn't be prouder of these students. They did a top notch job presenting findings from their research studies and answering audience members' questions. The NWCA conference is a wonderful opportunity for our students to showcase their analytical as well as presentation skills. Go Saints!" ~ Charlotte Jones, Ph.D. Professor, Communications