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Presentations from all different varieties of the communication field were on display by students on Thursday, March 15, at the annual Senior Showcase, one of the campus’s biggest events.
With the project being a necessary step for all communication students to graduate, the projects serve as an opportunity for students to shine.
“The senior project is a graduation requirement for all majors in the Department of Communication,” said Michael Cannon, a faculty member in the Communication Department. “The purpose of the project and the presentation is to provide an individual capstone presentation where each student is able to demonstrate excellence and proficiency in a way of passion and importance that helps prepare them for the professional world.”
The projects on display included photography businesses, advocacy websites and Snapchat filters.
Students such as Christian Duke, a senior studying communication, chose to do his project on web data governance. Duke explained it as “a framework of policies and procedures for the university.”
Garret Kerby, a senior studying communication, worked in the public relations department of Premier Group Realty West. He made fliers, a virtual tour and commercials for the company.
Many of the faculty who have been at multiple Senior Showcases said it is hard to pin down some of their favorite projects they have come across, due to the top-level projects seniors have created over the years.
“There are all so many that blend together,” Cannon said. “Projects are often exceptional and cut across all areas.”
Students who participate in the showcase set up their projects from 7 to 9 a.m. on the day of the Showcase. After setting up, they head into the Manwaring Center’s Little Theater at 2 p.m. to meet with a keynote speaker.
This year’s speaker was Neal Larson, a local radio talk show host, who spoke about the media in a free public.
Following the keynote speaker, students return to the BYU-I Center to begin the Showcase, which runs from 3:30 to 5 p.m.
As the students participating in the Showcase display their projects, faculty members stroll about judging the students’ work.
“(The teachers) judge the display, and a big part of their grade will be what they say,” said Ward Hicks, a faculty member in the Communication Department. In addition, a secret judge also wanders around the displays in an effort to keep students on their toes.
Students participating in the showcase said they were a little nervous with the judges but overall see them as a way to help them improve and progress in the future.
“It’s a little intimidating, but the judges are cool,” Kerby said. “They’re there to give you advice on what you could have done better and what you’ve done well.”
In addition, some projects are done in such a professional way that some students have been offered employment from businesses visiting the school.
“Occasionally, some students are hired because of what they’ve shown at the show,” Hicks said. “The businesses have just walked through and thought, ‘Wow, we need that at our company. Let’s see if we can get you hired.'”
Many examples of students going above and beyond with their projects can be found at the Showcase. Duke, for example, will be presenting his web data governance project to President Henry J. Eyring at the end of this semester.
The Senior Showcase is shown every semester. More info can be found by contacting the BYU-I Communication Department.