College Establishes New Academic Programs

With more than 110 academic programs, Oswego offers a broad range of degree and certificate programs that are revised in response to advances in the discipline, the needs of our region and the changing demands of our students. This year, the college established several new programs to meet those ever-evolving market demands.

Mary Toale (right), chair of communication studies, and graduate student Kristan Johnson- Thomas ’15 M’18 discuss the new master’s degree program in strategic communication.

Graphic Design Minor

The college will offer a new minor in graphic design this fall, which provides the tools for visual communication, visual literacy and problem solving to students in disciplines across campus.

Accredited by the National Association of Schools of Art and Design, the art department added the new minor to equip students to identify methods, tools and strategies for design planning, production, publication and distribution; develop technical, typographic, perceptual and visual organization skills; and evaluate design solutions using the elements and principles of design.

The curriculum includes digital media, multimedia and web media courses, as well as art history and foundational coursework.

Graphic design, already an established and popular undergraduate major and graduate degree program at the college, joins other art department or multidisciplinary minors that include art, art history, art management, expressive arts therapy, museum studies and photography.

Strategic Communication Master’s

The college recently began offering a grad­uate degree in strategic communication, the first master’s-level program from communication studies, which covers many potential career paths across multiple disciplines.

Candidates completing the master of arts degree in strategic communication will gain heightened knowledge and a sharpened skill set in producing effective and appropriate messages to create change, solve problems, influence others, highlight important issues within specific environments and strategically communicate with individuals at all levels of an organization.

The program will be offered in three tracks:

integrated media and social networks, run by Ulises Mejias, who already coordinates the certificate program in integrated media and social networks;

health communication, led by Taejin Jung; and

organizational communication, headed by Mary Toale, communication studies chair.

For more information visit or call 315-312-3152.


Special Education Master’s

The new Master of Science in Education: Special Education 7–12 Generalist program fills a demonstrated workforce need—regionally, across the state and nationally—for teachers of special education in grades 7-12.

The program leads to initial state certification for generalist special education teachers—those who can co-teach in a variety of subject areas—in middle and high schools. Full-time faculty in curriculum and instruction Roberta Schnorr, Amanda Fenlon, Carol Willard and Linda Stummer will teach in the new program.

Degree candidates can enroll in the program full or part time, opening the door for in-service teachers in content areas such as English, math, social studies, science, modern languages or teaching English to speakers of other languages (TESOL). Program requirements include a bachelor’s degree and initial certification in adolescence education or TESOL.

Each degree candidate will gain school-based experience through part-time field experiences and an internship.

For more information, visit, call the college’s Division of Graduate Studies at 315-312-3152 or email Fenlon at

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