Department of Communication Studies

Public Relations

This major includes coursework in Public Relations, Journalism, Communication Studies and Business, and its curriculum is consistent with industry and professional standards as well as with the recommendations of the National Commission on Public Relations Education.

The UNI's Public Relations Major has been named one of 23 "Premier" public relations education programs in the country. Faculty are of international prominence in their fields--both as scholars and as professional leaders. Students have achieved international prominence through their individual achievements as well as through their organizational activities. The UNI Chapter of the Public Relations Student Society of America was named the nation's "Outstanding Chapter" in 1998, 2004, and 2007. The student-run public relations agency was named the international chapter firm in 1999, 2003, 2007 and in 2009.

The Public Relations Degree Program was approved during the academic year 1977-78, and the Major began with 12 students in the following Fall 1978. The number of the program's baccalaureate degree holders now exceeds over 2,500 graduates, who are working throughout the United States in a range of professional positions.

The mission of the undergraduate public relations program is two-fold:

  • To prepare students, within a liberal arts context, for positions in public relations within organizations and professional agencies; and
  • To prepare students for graduate study by providing them with foundations in mass communication theory, methodology and related skills and knowledge.

    PRogressor cover PR students win prize
    The Public Relation program's in-house PR firm, LegacyPR, gives students opportunities to work on real public relations campaigns for local organizations, and to develop publications, such as The PRogressor.

    Three UNI Public Relations students won a trip to New York City for creating the runner-up video in the PR Council's third “Take Flight with PR” video contest. Brittany Lynn Holthaus, Tobias Henderson, and Kathryn Storey created a short video titled: Carrying Hope. One Education at a Time.  The approximately three-minute video was selected for recognition by a panel of judges from the PR industry. The students created the video through Dr. Gayle Pohl's Public Relations Campaign Methods class in Spring 2015. See full story for more details.