IABC is happy to welcome DePaul PROCMN as our newest 2021 – 2022 sponsor of IABC Chicago. Not familiar with the PROCMN program? Learn more below in our interview with Dr. Matt Ragas, associate professor.
Q: Tell us a little about the new fully online Master’s in Professional Communication?
A: The MA in Professional Communication (PROCMN) is a new fully online, accelerated graduate degree program built to fit the busy lives and needs of working professionals. In this cohort style program, you’ll take classes together as a learner community, and complete your degree in just one year. A virtual residency for the first cohort kicks off in late August! The PROCMN degree is taught by award-winning faculty in the College of Communication at DePaul. All faculty in the program have advanced training in online teaching. The curriculum is dedicated to helping you enhance your external and internal communication skills and advance in your careers into communication leadership positions. The curriculum was designed with input from senior communication leaders at world-class organizations like the American Heart Association, Deloitte Consulting, GOLIN, The Walt Disney Company and Zeno Group.
Q: Why is the time right for the MA in PROCMN degree program?
A: I think the time has never been better to launch a high-quality, accelerated online grad degree program geared to working professionals in the professional communication field. Stated simply, DePaul has amazing tools and technologies available to create a high-quality educational experience in an online graduate program. Further, the future of work is increasingly about distributed workforces and hybrid work. For many communication professionals, the future of work involves online. Research shows that more positions are becoming remote only and that “work from anywhere” is on the rise. Even more traditional positions are shifting to more work from home (WFH) days. With the MA in PROCMN, you don’t need to commute into the Loop several nights a week for your classes. Instead, we bring Chicago and a world-class and individualized educational experience to you. You can be physically located anywhere and you will succeed in the PROCMN program, build your professional network and grow in your career.
Q: You’re the director of the PROCMN program. What’s your background and interests?
A: I am tenured associate professor of public relations and advertising in the College of Communication. In many ways, I see myself as a “pracademic.” As such, my teaching and research tends to have a practical edge to it. My expertise is in corporate communication and my professional background is in financial communication and business publishing. Books I have co-authored on developing business acumen for communication professionals are in use at more than 25 different colleges and universities around the world. I am an active consultant to top organizations such as Target, Mayo Clinic and HEINEKEN. I’m not new to grad teaching and advising. Prior to PROCMN, I was the academic director of the DePaul PR and advertising grad program, which I helped grow into a Top Five nationally ranked program according to PRWeek.
Q: Can you tell us about the special partnership between PROCMN and IABC Chicago?
I am delighted to share that the IABC Chicago chapter is now a corporate partner of DePaul University. This means that IABC Chicago members can receive a 25% tuition discount off the cost of the PROCMN courses. We’re talking an almost $10,000 savings in tuition, when one considers this discount and that PROCMN is two credits less than our traditional grad degrees. This is serious ROI when you think about the annual dues for IABC and then this savings! Since this is a cohort-based program, we admit students only once a year with classes starting each Fall (with a virtual residency and orientation in late August to get everyone acquainted and rolling). So if you’re interested, you still have time to get in your admission materials for this cohort!
Q: How do I learn more about PROCMN and if it might be a good fit for me?
To learn more about PROCMN, visit us online at: go.depaul.edu/PROCMN. The graduate admission team would be glad to chat with you. You can schedule a virtual appointment by emailing: firstname.lastname@example.org. I’m also easy to reach and glad to speak with you: email@example.com. I would highly encourage you to consider attending a webinar we’ll be holding on July 8 at 5:30 pm. The webinar is free, but registration is required. In it, I’ll provide a mini workshop on communication leadership development, with a focus on “10 ideas in 10 minutes” for developing your business acumen, followed by an information session and Q&A about the PROCMN degree. I think you’ll find this hour worth your time. Hope to see you there!
About Dr. Matt Ragas
Matt Ragas is an associate professor in the College of Communication where he teaches graduate and undergraduate courses in business literacy for communicators, corporate social responsibility (CSR), entrepreneurship, media relations, and digital and traditional public relations. During his time as academic director of the PR and advertising graduate program, it was named PRWeek Awards Education Program of the Year.
Ragas earned his PhD in mass communication from the University of Florida. He holds an MS in management and a BS in business administration (marketing concentration), both from the University of Central Florida. Topics of Ragas’s interdisciplinary research include corporate communications, investor relations and financial communications, and news and public opinion (and influences on news content). With over a decade of professional experience in media and communication, he links theory and practice in his teaching and research.