Get ready to break some news, make a PR pitch and show off your broadcast chops!
Prince George’s Community College just launched its brand new Center for Performing Arts.
“It’s an art,” communications professor Lou Holder said. “We have programs for every type of mass comm. If you want to do a podcast [or] if you want to learn how to write scripts, you can do that.”
Broadcast students will enjoy brand new TV and radio studios.
“They have all the bells and whistles,” Holder said. “Our industry is changing so much with radio and television, that it’s good to have state-of-the-art equipment … level with what they’re consuming.”
The students produce their own shows on Prince George’s Community College Television (PGCC-TV).
“We have a show I helped create called ‘SportsNest’ where we highlight all the sports programs here at Prince George’s Community College,” Holder said. “Eventually … we’ll have a half-hour broadcast of the whole news, because some students want to do entertainment, some want to do weather, and some want to do just straight news. … The goal is to have shows that are student-run and student-produced, so they can have real-life experience on their resume … that they did something of substance here.”
Students can’t get over the sleek new stations.
“The new space is amazing,” broadcast student Moude Osei said. “These amazing professors are so engulfed in our careers. They’re like, ‘Come use the studio! Come to the radio station! Record your podcast here!’ … The station is just so real. You are in a real station. No one can take that from you. They can’t say, ‘Oh, you’re just at a community college.’ It’s a real station and you’re getting real experience.”
Such hands-on experience is a big selling point compared to four-year colleges.
“At a lot of these colleges, you don’t get to do anything until you’re a senior, but here you can jump right in,” Holder said. “If you are looking to be stretched, get something on your resume, or make a difference in your profession, Prince George’s Community College is where you need to be.”
In addition to mass communications, you can also study journalism and public relations.
“We are one of just two community colleges in the state offering a public relations program,” public relations professor Dr. Clover Baker-Brown said. “We are providing the first two years of a public relations program for them, then they take it to the four-year [university] and earn their degree.”
She agrees that the facility is state-of-the-art.
“The Center for Performing Arts is a dream come true,” Baker-Brown said. “The facility itself has been something that we have dreamt about for a very long time – and now it’s finally here. … We have a lot of labs for our students who are majoring in public relations and journalism. … We are planning on moving our student newspaper over. … We now have labs they can go in and actually practice their craft.”
Student feedback has been tremendous.
“They are excited, they’re hungry for knowledge,” Baker-Brown said. “That’s one of the things that we’re able to do very well here is to help to satiate that knowledge for them. We provide them with information, we make it accessible and we make it fun, learning something that they really want to do.”