Student Media and Agencies
Students gain valuable media experience by working for one or more of the campus media organizations, all housed in the Don Morris Center:
- 99 West, a student-run multimedia production agency
- KACU-FM, affiliated with National Public Radio and the Associated Press
- the Optimist, a twice-weekly student newspaper that is part of the JMC Network
- Morris & Mitchell, a student-run advertising and public relations agency. Visit Morris & Mitchell on Facebook
Paid positions are available at each media organization. For more information, see the Student Media page.
- Ad/PR Club -- Includes members of the American Advertising Federation (AAF) student chapter and the Public Relations Student Society of America (PRSSA) student chapter
- Society of Professional Journalists -- SPJ student chapter
- Kappa Tau Alpha -- national JMC honor society chapter. Each year the JMC Department inducts students with high grade point averages
- Broadcast Education Association
Many Abilene employers regularly offer internships, part-time and full-time jobs to JMC majors at ACU. Just a few examples are:
- KTAB-TV (CBS affiliate)
- KRBC-TV (NBC affiliate)
- KTXS-TV (ABC affiliate)
- Abilene Reporter-News
- Zachry Associates
- Hendrick Medical Center
- Abilene Regional Medical Center
- City of Abilene
- West Texas Rehabilitation Center
JMC students win many awards annually in these local, state, regional and national student media competitions:
- American Advertising Federation
- Texas Intercollegiate Press Association (TIPA)
- Society of Professional Journalists (SPJ)
- Public Relations Student Society of America (PRSSA)
- American Collegiate Press
Meetings and conventions sponsored by media associations allow students to network with media professionals and other media students. ACU was represented in at these media meetings:
- Texas Intercollegiate Press Association
- Society of Professional Journalists National Convention
- Society of Professional Journalists Region 8 Convention
At least four times a year, JMC students, faculty, friends and alumni gather for special events:
- The Gutenberg Celebration, conducted during Homecoming Weekend each fall to honor the distinguished professional achievements of selected alumni.
- A formal ceremony each spring for the induction of new Kappa Tau Alpha scholars and an Abilene honorary member into the journalism honor society.
- Senior Sanctuary, honoring graduating seniors.
- Party on the Patio, honoring outstanding student academic and media performance.
JMC students have fulfilled internships across the country, most recently in cities of New York, Washington, D.C., Los Angeles, Nashville, Honolulu; Dallas, Austin, Abilene, San Angelo, Fort Worth, Houston, Wichita Falls, Oklahoma City. See Internship Central or the JMC internship program blog for more information.
Study and Travel Abroad
In addition to the general education offerings of the Study Abroad program, students have an opportunity every other summer to earn course credit by studying abroad with a JMC professor. Previous courses have included JMC 488 Communication Law, a course included in the JMC core curriculum, and JMC 400 Perspectives in Media, a course that compares American and European media systems and content. Students study and visit media outlets in a variety of countries, which have included England, France, Spain and Germany. These major-specific course offerings give students a first-hand perspective on the influence of a region's history, culture and politics on the media there. Students maintain their student media positions with the JMC/network or the Ad/PR agency during their summer study abroad session.
Department Scholarships and Awards
The Wendell H. Bedichek Award is presented each spring to the most valuable staff member of the student newspaper, The Optimist. The award was established by Bedichek, who was editor of the paper in 1921-24.
The Lowell G. Perry Award memorializes the late founder of the broadcasting program, who was killed in a plane crash while searching for a site for a Christian short-wave radio station. The award is presented annually to a broadcasting student who measures up to the principles modeled and taught by Dr. Perry.
The Vonda K. Dietz Award is a memorial to the editor of the 1989 Prickly Pear yearbook, who died in an auto accident a few days before the book was completed. The award is presented annually to a student who exhibits Vonda's style of leadership, energy and committment to student media.
Lydia Clark Heston Photojournalism Scholarship - recipient must be a junior or senior, have a 2.5 GPA, and be an Optimist/JMC Network photographer or videographer
Clarion Award - recipient is typically an Ad/PR major who has been called to a career of service and who will use the award in the next academic year. The scholarship is underwritten by Elise Mitchell, APR, class of 1983
ACT/SAT Academic Scholarships
Please consult with your admissions counselor for details on these and other scholarships available to you.