Updated: Dec 9, 2022
Journalism has been extracted from the Ohio Wesleyan major course book for two years, yet there are some whispers that speculate it will make its return.
Ohio Wesleyan announced in 2020 that they were eliminating 18 different majors, including journalism, helping save the campus $4 million.
It was a shock to many journalism majors because the student newspaper at the university holds a lot of history. The Transcript, a student online newspaper, is the oldest independent college student newspaper in the country.
“It surprised a lot of people especially with the combination of majors” says Anna Nacci, the Transcript’s managing editor.
The university didn’t entirely get rid of the journalism department but swiftly combined it with the communication department. This change left students confused but it evidently helped with the load of work given to professors.
“The journalism major was beneficial for students that are passionate about it, however I think that the combined majors really help give a broader education for when you leave college,” said Nacci.
When discussing bringing back individual majors, Ohio Wesleyan needs to look at multiple aspects to see if it’s the right call. They need to see if it’s cost effective, better for the faculty, and helps students once they graduate.
It’s said that the combination of the journalism and communication majors give students a broader education that will help them once they graduate. Which creates a debate on whether they should be split.
Natalie Ryan, a freshman majoring in biochemical engineering, believes the program should be brought back.
“I know some friends that are interested in journalism, so it would be nice to see that major back just for them!” she said.
Students' opinions matter in these types of situations, however so do the faculty’s ideas. Ohio Wesleyans President, Rock Jones, believes in a combined education.
“…we think these graduates will be best served by a broader curriculum that includes other forms of communication as well as journalism, and that prepares graduates to communicate effectively, thoughtfully and persuasively in a digital world,” said President Rock Jones.
Evidently it’s been proven that both the journalism and communication major should remain combined.
Bringing journalism back to Ohio Wesleyan is in the hands of the students and faculty. There are reasons that point to keeping the department the way it is as well as splitting them apart. The university must take many factors into account and ultimately determine what's best.