Career Perspectives

Our graduates go on to pursue doctoral studies and/or successful careers in, for example, public relations, marketing, event planning, social media development, higher education, and non-profit management. Here's how some of our graduates describe the impact and value of our graduate programs:

Kaitlin Cleary '15 MA - Journalism and New Media

Kaitlin Cleary ’15 MA, Certificate in Journalism and New Media, Co-founder, Team 624 Communications

“I chose Villanova because of the broad view of communication it offered. There are not many programs where you can learn media production, PR writing, audience analysis, journalism and communication theory. While my experience as a student was incredibly rewarding, it wasn't until leaving Villanova that it became clear to me what I received through my education there. The friendships I made in the program grew stronger, as we regularly connect to discuss networking, career, life and everything in between."

 Andrew Zivic

Andrew Zivic, Director of College Readiness for OnTrack, a free online college access program. 

"When people think of the getting a job in the communication field, my position is probably not one that would come to mind. It certainly wasn't the job I imagined when I started at Villanova. I began working for OnTrack part-time while at Villanova and I continued on after I graduated. I can't imagine doing a different job. I help write, edit, and produce educational videos, so I'm able to use the skills taught to me at Villanova but in a non-traditional communication role. It's important to keep your mind open to what might not seem at first like a direct fit. You never know where you'll find your dream job."

Re'Anne Kleinbard

My graduate education in the Communication program at Villanova had a profound impact on my life in more ways than one. Having a Master's from Villanova was helpful throughout the job search, especially as I often applied things I learned in the classroom during interviews, and the classes were highly specified for such a broad and ever-changing field. I certainly felt prepared for the workforce. The Comm program deepened my understanding of communication, public relations and advertising in new ways, preparing me for corporate America, but it also made me critically think, analyze, and approach the world differently. The material was on a much higher level, and the classes, students and faculty were highly knowledgeable and diverse. They constantly challenged me to think beyond the academic realm, and look rather at the macrocosm of the outside world through both theory and practice, something I am not sure I would have had the fortune of doing elsewhere, making my experience that much more valuable, and for that, I am grateful.

Elizabeth Dougert

I chose Villanova for my graduate studies in communication because of the program’s triangular focus on research, theory and practice. This balanced approach helped me to develop clearer strategies that drive the communications tasks I execute each day. During my time in the program, I moved up from a communications manager to a communications director, gaining greater responsibility and autonomy. My studies gave me the confidence to successfully make important decisions and to trust my own judgment. My current employer also mentioned that my graduate degree from Villanova was a major contributing factor in their decision to hire me. 

 

The program provided a solid overview of the current state of the communications field in general, with opportunities to pursue more in-depth studies in areas of special interest. In my case, I earned a certificate in public relations as part of the MA. Studying public relations from professors who have worked decades in the field, and even own their own public relations firms, was incredible. I really appreciated that our professors were passionate about teaching in the midst of pursuing their own research and professional projects. Their personalities made the classroom a fun place to be, even at the end of a long work day.

Minh Cao

I recently graduated from my Master’s Degree in Communication, with a focus on Public Relations & Advertising. I first became aware of my interest in the discipline after I had taken a couple of electives in Communication while I was pursuing my Bachelor’s Degree in Global Interdisciplinary Studies. I started my 2-year program as a Graduate Assistant, working in event planning in Falvey Memorial Library. My assistantship was an extremely rewarding experience, not only for the experience I gained, but also because of the relationships I was able to establish with supervisors, coworkers, and undergraduate peers. The dawn of my thesis, in fact, arose from a conversation I had with my co-GA in the Scholarly Outreach office of the library. In my second year, I took an internship in Global Market Development at QVC while keeping a part-time assistantship working with our Communication faculty. These opportunities allowed me to connect with various faculty members on their own projects and add many diversifications to my academic and professional experience. My two years in the Graduate Communication program certainly enriched my academic portfolio with both fascinating and practical courses, significantly enhanced my opportunity to explore professional options and undoubtedly gave birth to relationships that go beyond my academic terms.

 

Ryan Kirchner

"For me, the analytical skills in conjunction with a collaborative class structure provided the tools to confidently enter a competitive industry and make a difference. The Communication Department was a place where I met friends and mentors who continually challenged me in ways that I had never been before and with whom I formed bonds that will remain for life."

Ryan Kirchner
Marketing Director at Auto Palace Porsche

Jeffrey Eisenberg

"The Communication grad program at Villanova was tremendously helpful to my personal and career development. I most importantly grew as a writer and researcher, and these are skills I use every day in my career in digital media. The program also drew my attention to the transformative power of communication and media in society. As I've shaped the direction of my career, I've taken this view to heart as I work to use digital media to solve needs and connect ideas and resources in ways that are mutually beneficial for audiences and organizations"

Jeffrey Eisenberg, MA
Coordinator, New Media, Communications and Events at the Neumann University Institute for Sport, Spirituality and Character Development

Elise Scioscia

"To say this has been an invaluable education would be an understatement.

 

The interdisciplinary nature of the program means that your classmates and professors bring a multitude of perspectives, and classroom conversation will challenge you to think harder, write better, open your mind, and be prepared to justify your analyses.

 

Today, I am responsible for public policy strategy and communication at a large anti-domestic violence nonprofit and service provider in Philadelphia. This requires quick critical thinking, strategic decision-making, and constant communication. In addition to some of the practical skills I was able to inevitably hone in the graduate program (writing, research, public speaking, etc.), my professional work benefits hugely from my graduate experience analyzing text, developing arguments and constructing messages.

 

Fully understanding the importance and ubiquity of communication comes with the encumbrance that it can fail you if you don’t pay attention to it. Not only is this an important lesson for the work we do with external audiences (elected officials, our supporters, our clients), but it is an often-overlooked tenet of building strong organizational cultures. Being mindful of how we work with and talk to each other has allowed me to be a resource to my colleagues as we improve our internal communication processes.

 

My experience in the Graduate Studies in Communication taught me not only how to “do” communication, and how it “works,” but importantly, that it is, in fact, the singular thing upon which all of our interactions, experiences and relationships are built."

 

Elise Scioscia
Public Policy Coordinator, Women Against Abuse
Villanova Communication MA ‘10

Emily Hughes

"Villanova University's graduate program in communication helped me develop a strong critical worldview, while teaching me to apply theory to practice and recognize communication's role in every aspect of life. These strategic communication skills have been the foundation of my success both professionally and personally; I consider them invaluable."

Emily Hughes '11 MA '12
Head of Social Media and Strategic Partnerships
The FOND Group

 

 

Kevin Moran

"The program provides the space to explore topics relevant to personal and professional interests while instilling the skills necessary to be a highly effective communicator. For me, this took the form of examining the intersections of communication, leadership and urban planning resulting in original research, lasting mentor relationships and a new communicative paradigm in which to approach city building."

Kevin Moran
Executive Director of Fairmount Community Development Corporation (Fairmount CDC), a non-profit corporation that fosters the improvement of the residential, commercial, and social fabric of the Philadelphia Fairmount neighborhood, while preserving its character and diversity.

Marianela Nunez

"Getting an MA in Communication from Villanova University has given me the opportunity to grow as a professional and to do things that matter not only to myself, but to society as well. My degree allows me to have an array of possibilities because I am not confined to a particular job, and in this competitive environment we live in, that is a great treasure. I am prepared to face the challenges that a work life brings with it, and I know I will be able to apply and transfer my knowledge of communication to any career path I decide to follow."

Marianela Nuñez
Field Consultant, Catholic Schools
Diocese of Camden

Ralph Gigliotti

"Reflecting on my experiences in the graduate program, three important ideas stand out as being especially critical to my development as a student and professional:

  1. Direct contact with a caring group of faculty who are experts in the Communication field
  2. Lasting friendships with former classmates who have a broad array of interests in communication theory and practice
  3. The experience of writing a graduate thesis, coupled with the rigor of my coursework, allowed me to grow as a writer, researcher, and critical thinker

 

I would highly recommend the program to any prospective students who have a passion for exploring the intersection of communication theory and practice in a welcoming and collegial community."

Ralph Gigliotti
Assistant Director, Center for Organizational Development and Leadership & Doctoral Candidate, Rutgers University

Jaya Mohan

"Pursuing my master's degree in Communication from Villanova was a defining experience for me. Certainly, I learned skills - but this program also gave me the opportunity to explore the position I inhabit in the world. The Communication department's faculty encouraged me to think beyond the scope of what I had learned to that point; they pushed me to consider a new way of thinking and seeing the world around me. This way of thinking and seeing - of recognizing the deep meaning that imbues our choices as we move through the world - has provided me with a strong intellectual foundation that is the bedrock for my professional career. It allows me to pursue my job as an administrator in higher education with a passion that is tempered by a critical understanding of the work I do, and it prepares me for the changes that lie ahead - for me, as an individual, and in the larger landscape of higher education. I am a better thinker, writer, professional, and human person for having been a part of this program, and I am grateful to Villanova's Communication department for that."

 

 

Jaya Mohan, M.A. '09
Associate Director, Office of Undergraduate Research
Pennoni Honors College, Drexel University

Learn more about the views of other graduate students and alumni through their testimonials.

Graduate Program

DIRECTOR
Dr. Thomas Ksiazek
Associate Professor
Director of Graduate Studies
Villanova University - Garey Hall

Contact          thomas.ksiazek@villanova.edu           610-519-6434

faculty

Our mission is summarized in the University motto: Veritas, Unitas, Caritas. An Augustinian institution, Villanova University values dynamic and diverse community members committed to learning, scholarship and service, and who can contribute to the University’s ongoing conversation regarding ethics, community, and social justice.