Communications is a fast growing degree. Traditionally it has been for people interested in going into news, radio, and journalism. Not anymore. Communications degrees are also sought after by those wanting to do consulting, writing, public relations, and marketing.
Communications studies cover various communication theories and how it effects individuals and groups. Many organizations are starting to employ communications specialists and public relations professionals to craft their company messages for internal and external audiences. Many business leaders are realizing that communication is a both an art and a science with specific outcomes that result from different types of messages.
Public relations has always been a great career, but now many organizations are using internal public relations specialists. It sounds like an oxymoron, but organizational leaders are now beginning to understand that they can never have external success if their internal employees are not communicated to properly. Many executives worry so much about external messaging read by the public, but neglect internal messages.
Many communications specialists now specialize in internal marketing and messaging. They often work very closely with top leadership in crafting email messages, company newsletters, and all other internal communications. They also do things like write speeches and plan group meetings. Many times they review and edit PowerPoint presentations for clarity, readability, and proper messaging.
The degree typically comes in a bachelor’s and master’s. The first two years are spent completing general education requirements such as English, mathematics, social sciences, humanities, and speech. Common courses within the major include:
- Communication theory
- Media theory
- Mass media communication
- Communications consulting
- Computer mediated communications
- Organizational communications
The degree is very diverse and allows students to work in private industry, public sector, education, non-profit, and government. What type of organization does not need someone with excellent communication skills? Some graduates venture out and start their own communications consulting business.
No matter what you do there are an abundance of career choices when you graduate with a communications degree. Some job titles include:
- Communications specialist
- Communications consultant
- Public relations specialist
- Freelance writer
- Media liaison
- Media specialist
- Social media manager
- Marketing specialist
The Bureau of Labor Statistics expects communications related jobs to grow slightly faster than the overall job market. Graduates can expect a about a ten percent growth rate in jobs from 2008-2018. Job openings will be available, but there will be a lot of competition.
The average communications specialist earns a salary of approximately $60,000 per year. Public relation reps with a lot of clients can easily earn six figure salaries. Communications consultant can also earn substantial salaries.