Mass communication department holds senior reception

Photos by Zoe Fisher 

Zoe Fisher
Advertising Editor
[email protected]


UNC Asheville’s mass communication department hosted its annual senior reception, organized by mass communication senior lecturer Michael Gouge and sponsored by the Blue Banner. 

The event featured an award ceremony for distinctions in the mass communication major.Students gathered around the patio outside Karpen Hall for the awards and reminisced about their time in the department with their professors.

Graduating senior Jack Lockard, a recipient of the mass communication distinction, said he has learned a lot within the department about the mass communication field.

“Through my time in the mass communication department at UNCA, I really think I gained a great understanding of the field and I learned such a wide variety of skills applicable not just in the communication field,” he said.

The mass communication major, one of the largest majors offered at UNCA, features

tracts in journalism, video media production and public relations. The major sets many students up for success post-graduation.

Trent Price, a graduating senior and mass communication distinction recipient, reflected on his time in the major and the school’s media.

“I am extremely grateful for the experiences I’ve had in my major. My journalism classes have widened my skill set a lot. A huge part of my time at UNCA also was the Blue Echo Radio. I was able to practice a lot of my mass comm related skills while I was involved with them as well,” Price said.

Graduating senior Samuel Hager, the editor-in-chief of the Blue Banner, expressed how thankful he is for the mass communication department faculty.

“Honestly I just want to say once again how thankful I am to the faculty within the department, especially my adviser, Professor Diefenbach. I couldn’t have graduated this semester without their support and I’ll never forget that,” Hager said.

Distinctions in the mass communication major were handed out by Professor Donald Deifenbach, chair of the mass communication department. Distinctions were also earned by several other students not in attendance. 

Students must complete numerous co-curricular activities outside of classes to earn the distinction, including achievements in writing, information literacy and critical thinking.   They must also maintain a 3.0 grade point average.

With many students’ graduation a semester away, and some two weeks out, students describe their conflicting feelings toward the end of their college career.

“Graduation is always a bittersweet experience. It is to me anyway. I feel like I am just now getting into student orgs and getting to know people, but COVID-19 took out a big chunk of my time at UNCA,” Price said.

 Even with the complicated journey the students had to face throughout the pandemic their perseverance earned them the opportunity to walk across the stage. 

As far as graduating goes, it honestly hasn’t set in yet. I’ve been in college since I was 14 and the work has been constant for these past four years. I’m now really ready for a nice break,” Lockard said.