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By Jaslyn Bridges

CCC Journalism Program

The discontinuing of the Camden County College public relations degree program causes students to make a variety of decisions. This is the last semester CCC students will be able to be enrolled in a public relations degree program.

Professor Drew Jacobs says declining enrollment caused the public relations degree program to be canceled. Photo by Jaslyn Bridges, CCC Journalism Program

“The termination was due to the college’s declining enrollment,” states Assistant Professor of Communications Drew Jacobs. “Numbers were extremely low to continue to offer a public relations degree program to students, causing its termination in 2020.”

Students were sent notification via email in spring 2020 to discuss options to complete a degree at CCC.

Jacobs has been teaching public relations courses at CCC for the last 23 years. The public relations degree program was at its pinnacle in the early 2000s, with about 50 to 60 students per class. The number of students began to drop to about 40 in the 2010-2011 school year.

Jacobs recalls having a discussion with the administration stating, “Things are changing. Can I research this and see what can be done to turn this around?”

After doing some research, Jacobs found public relations careers were growing. “Public relations have one of the best, in terms of a little bit more entry-level jobs, higher-paying jobs than other media careers,” he says.

Only eight remaining students in the program will be able to finish with a public relations degree. After that, “for students looking to come to Camden community college, they will go directly to other colleges that have this program to offer,” putting CCC at a disadvantage, he states.

CCC will continue to offer the Introduction to Public Relations course as an elective as of fall 2022.

Daisey Anyanwu says she chose to switch out some of her public relations courses for marketing. Photo by Jaslyn Bridges, CCC Journalism Program

Daisey Anyanwu, one of the eight remaining public relations majors at CCC, has chosen to switch out some of her public relations courses for marketing. She will graduate with her public relations degree this semester, then transfer her degree to a marketing degree with a minor in public relations. Anyanwu was notified when she enrolled in CCC it was discontinuing its public relations program.

“It didn’t bother me that much because I knew that I wanted to major in marketing,” she says. “It’s bittersweet that’s it’s ending. The college is offering different majors like the computer science major and video programming majors, so with those majors being implemented into the school, of course, other majors will have to leave.”

Matthew Procida, who is taking public relations classes at CCC, will graduate with a bachelor’s degree in public relations at Rowan University this semester. “I struggled to pick a career field that was right for me,” Procida says. “I finally landed on something that worked for me and I fell in love with it.”

He decided to pursue his public relations degree in spring 2019.

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