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ASJMC Mission, Goals and Strategic Plan

ASJMC Mission and Goals
adopted August 4, 2006
San Francisco, California


Journalism and mass communication programs exist today in universities and colleges where scientific and technological advances have altered our lives, our culture and our economy; where, increasingly, “departments and their faculty members are expected to find their own financial support for programs” (1) and where individual access to technology has made everyone an instant communicator to a global, a local or a glocal audience.

Journalism and mass communication programs face increasing threats – to their existence, their perceived value, their wellbeing and their prestige. Never before has it been so important for journalism/mass communication educational organizations to:
• assert the value of their programs’ curricula to the academic, the professional and the lay communities;
• promote and publicize their professional and academic worth to the local, national and international communities;
• take a leadership role in defending the trust they hold in the education of the citizenry, in articulating the value of a free, unfettered press to a democracy, and in securing the partnerships (academic, professional, technological and fiscal) they need to realize the objectives of their programs.
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Mission Statement:

The Association of Schools of Journalism and Mass Communication is an organization of leaders – deans, directors and chairs of journalism and mass communication programs in college and universities. The organization seeks to extend collectively on a national and even an international level the individual leadership its members practice on their campuses. This organization will work to ensure that its constituents innovate, manage and lead in a media marketplace undergoing fundamental change. It will work to ensure that j/mc programs broaden, deepen and invigorate the professions they serve, working with them to innovate and lead. [Update August 2007-- after a year of discussions about a possible name change for the association, members were unable to develop a better name, and approved keeping the current name.]
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Goal I:

Provide national leadership for the advancement of journalism/mass communications education:

Objective 1.1: Set the agenda for discourse about journalism/mass comm. education.

Strategy 1.1.1:
At regular/set intervals, the past president, president and president-elect should be in contact via phone, e-mail or otherwise to set the agenda for discourse about journalism/mass comm. education and should communicate their agenda or determinations to the media and other relevant constituencies.

Strategy 1.1.2:
The organization’s leading officers (the above) should be the convenor of discussions and collaborations with academic and professional organizations with similar goals and objectives and should send representatives to meetings and conventions of media and academic organizations. ASJMC (renamed) will convene an annual “town hall” or roundtable “summit” to create an annual “state of journalism/mass comm. education” white paper. ASJMC will need to secure funding to further this initiative.

Strategy 1.1.3:
Continue to discuss matters relevant to the administration of j/mc programs through the generation of articles to the organization’s publications (especially Insights) and website.
Ensure that these publications are disseminated to relevant constituencies in the academy, the profession and industry, corporations and foundations.

Objective 2.1: To: Continue to provide help to administrators of j/mc units.

Strategy 2.1.1:
Foster formal arrangements with the relevant academic organizations toward the goal of providing workshops, seminars and panels aimed at administrators, to be held at their annual conventions. The Council of Communication Associations, which includes NCA, ICA, BEA and others, could provide for collaborations on programming to be held at all conferences, conventions, etc.

Objective 3.1: To: Continue to define the discipline of j/mc in an evolving and increasingly technologically driven society.

Strategy 3.1.1:
Plan program offerings in innovative curricula, new courses, non-traditional and interdisciplinary communications areas.
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Goal ll:

Articulate the role of j/mc education to a variety of constituencies – academic, professional, industrial, and public constituencies.

Objective 2.1: To: Provide forums to discuss the role of j/mc education in relation to the liberal arts and sciences, to technology and to the restructuring of the contemporary academy. The renamed ASJMC could provide a template for such a forum on individual campuses. Conversations at the local level could be very useful and would obviate the need for an ASJ-sponsored major national discussion.

Strategy 2.1.1:
Organize convention programs and encourage publication of articles (delivered through various means) that explore and define the purposes of liberal arts and sciences and technology in various j/mc programs. A special annual issue of Insights would cover these topics.

Strategy 2.1.2:
Promote inquiry into the changing nature of higher education and into the role therein of j/mc education. Expand such inquiry to conversation about the changing nature of society.

Objective 2.2: To: Collaborate with relevant organizations – academic, professional, industrial – to discuss basic and applied research in the discipline.

Strategy 2.2.1:
Work with the Council of Communication Associations and other relevant organizations to disseminate j/mc research to the relevant professionals.

Objective 2.3: To: Promote j/mc education as the desired education and training for professional communicators.

Strategy 2.3.1:
Collaborate with AEJMC regarding industry and professional trends, job placement and internships for j/mc graduates and publicize success stories in the academy, the media and other relevant constituencies.

Objective 2.4: To: Collaborate with ACEJMC to provide forums on the accreditation process and how it relates to academic values.

Strategy 2.4.1:
Partner with ACEJMC to ensure transparency in the accreditation process and to develop a system whereby accreditation standards are juxtaposed with academic values.
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Goal lll:

Foster excellence in the leadership, administration and management of j/mc units.

Objective 3.1: Provide forums to discuss excellence in j/mc units and the leadership, administration and management of those units.

Strategy 3.1.1:
Plan programs on leadership, administration and management, perhaps availing of institutes at various universities to educate j/mc unit heads about these specialties.

Strategy 3.1.2:
Work with the Council for the Advancement and Support of Education, for example, to hold special convention and pre-convention workshops for administrators.

Strategy 3.1.3:
Assist members with fund-raising by notifying them of opportunities with foundations, corporations and government agencies that contribute to j/mc education. The p.r. appointee will undertake this assignment, using the organization’s website as a communications tool.

Strategy 3.1.4:
Collaborate with leaders, administrators and management from other disciplines to explore the similarities and differences across disciplines. Ensure that j/mc administration partners with university central and higher administration in programs and forums.

Strategy 3.1.5:
Promote the inclusiveness of women and minorities in leadership, administrative and management roles in j/mc programs through ongoing networking and training opportunities.

Strategy 3.1.6:
Provide data to all members of the organization about contracts, salaries, special clauses, and other information that may be pertinent to administrators’ careers.

Strategy 3.1.7:
Provide mentorship, internship and fellowship (i.e., fiscal) support to enable women and minority group members to engage in and advance in their administrative careers. Obtain feedback and monitor successes.

(1) Warren Bennis and Hallam Movius, “Why Harvard is So Hard to Lead,” The Chronicle of Higher Education, B20, March 17, 2006
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ASJMC Strategic Plan: (adopted August 2006)

The 2006 task force on the mission and goals has concluded that ASJMC needs to:
• be positioned and perceived as THE leadership organization for journalism/mass communication educators;
• be distinguished from the alphabet-soup of similarly named organizations by a branding campaign and a name change; [Update August 2007-- after a year of discussions about a possible name change for the association, members were unable to develop a better name, and approved keeping the current name.]
• be the convenor of conversation about issues in journalism/mass communication education with the academy, the profession and industry, members of the public, corporate and foundation executives;
• and share in the full-time resource of an AEJMC public relations/marketing/advocacy person.

The organization needs to be activist and proactive in setting the agenda for national discourse about journalism/mass communication/communications education. Its past president, president and president-elect need to convene regularly, electronically or otherwise, to discuss matters relevant to the organization and to determine their public stance on behalf of the organization. Working with the public relations person/advocate, the elected officers should set the agenda for discussion and ensure the promotion/communication of their determinations to the media and other relevant constituencies. The public relations person on the AEJ/ASJ staff will research ideas put forth for this call, assemble the agenda and do the follow-up.

Within a five-year period, 2006-2011, the organization should have national/international name recognition and successfully have set the agenda for discourse about journalism/mass communications education.
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