For the first time the Florence campus will be offering courses for sports communication majors. Now students can go to Lorenzo de’ Medici, the campus in Florence Italy, and fulfill their sports communication requirements at the same time. The campus in Florence has been offering one sports course for a few years now which is Sport, Culture, and Communication.
While that was a start there will now be an extra four courses offered that all count towards an upper level communication elective. The courses being offered are Creating the Multimedia Sports Narrative, Sport in Global Cinema and Television, Sports Communication Internship, and Global Sports Marketing.
These courses are being offered to help sports communication majors that want to go abroad and to try to even out the percentage of men and women who study in Italy. A lot of students at Marist go abroad, but for the ones that don’t it is not always by choice. Sometimes it is not an option for students if they plan on graduating in four years.
“I always wanted to study abroad but it would be too much since there were a lot of classes I had to take that were not being offered” said senior Kervan Rikh. “It also didn’t help that I came to Marist as a transfer so it was hard catching up and still being able to go abroad” he added.
Dr. Keith Strudler who is the head of the Center for Sports Communication is in charge of putting this together. However he is not alone “I count a lot on Vanessa Nichol-Peters, who runs the Florence campus, and John Peters, dean of International Programs. They’re really my liaisons for all of this” said Dr. Strudler.
Putting this program together has taken about two years and now will be offered every spring. The fall semester will not hold these classes. While it is people of the Marist community putting it together it is not only Marist students that this program is being offered to.
“It’s not just for Marist students. In fact, I assume we’ll get many students from colleges and universities around the world. For Marist students, it gives them a chance to take a focused area of study that’s unique to being abroad. It helps them to build their file of professional work, it lets them look at sports from a global perspective, and it should look great on a resume” Dr. Strudler said.
Dr. Strudler will be visiting Florence in spring 2015 to offer public lectures and seminars on Sports Communication for the Marist, Lorenzo de’ Medici, and Florentine communities. Students in Florence will also be available to video chat on the internet with the Center for Sports Communication to participate in activities going on at the campus in Poughkeepsie. Now students can study abroad and enjoy everything Italy has to offer as well as participate in everything the Marist home campus has to offer. All the more reason to go and study abroad, the technology available will make it not only possible but also simple to have the best of both worlds.
Along with visits from Dr. Strudler and video chats to the Poughkeepsie campus there will also be guest speakers that work in the sports business going to talk to the students in Florence. With all of this happening Florence should see an increase in interest from students who are studying in sports communication.
Leeann Brothers is a senior that did have the chance to study in Florence for a semester and said “Florence was the best time of my life if I could go there and spend another semester I would in a heartbeat”. When I told her that Lorenzo de’ Medici will be offering a more extensive sports communication program she thought it was great. “That’s a big step because when I went I took classes that were for my core, but if sports classes were available I definitely would have. It worked out for me because I am still taking every course I need in time but I know that there are students who don’t get the chance to go because of scheduling issues so this is a great thing that Marist is doing”.
The courses have not even started yet and Marist is already looking for other locations to offer the program.
“We’re already looking at other potential international sites to build sports communication course work. Rome is one possible spot amongst many; we are trying to offer as much as we can to the students studying sports communication. We want to give students the chance to study abroad and build their resume while doing it” said Dr. Keith Strudler.
For anybody that is studying sports communication and looking to study abroad this is a great opportunity. If Florence is not where you want to be it is possible that other locations will be there for you.
Applications are currently being accepted for spring 2015 study abroad. The space for it is limited so if this is something you are interested in get your application in soon and enjoy life abroad while still being a part of the home campus and building your resume.