The Communications faculty was on the quest to create an environment where students taking classes in Provo would have the opportunity to move the classroom 45 minutes to the north to Salt Lake City, where more robust real-world journalism, public relations and advertising opportunities lie. The semester in Salt Lake program ran its maiden voyage in Winter semester of 2014 and since then has become a great success and addition to the BYU School of Communications curriculum. Public relations and journalism students get the opportunity to report on the Utah State legislature, with the capitol being a short two block journey from the BYU Salt Lake Center. A number of the students also interned for organizations like the Salt Lake Tribune, Deseret News and a number of other communications related organizations centered in downtown Salt Lake City.
It was so nice to get out of Provo for a semester. Although taking the train up to the Capitol everyday was time consuming, it was totally worth it. I would describe the experience as more of an internship than a class.
I was interviewing really important people who got interviewed by professional journalists, so I felt like I was almost competing with Deseret News and the (Salt Lake) Tribune, which helped me perfect my interviewing skills.
In Winter 2014, a total of 81 seats were filled in the program including three BYU-Idaho students. We anticipate many more to be enrolled in the future.
Another benefit to the Semester in Salt Lake is the lack of an application. Students simply enroll in the cluster of classes located at the BYU Salt Lake Center, and they are in. No complicated applications, letters of recommendation, etc.
Students are able to practice real world reporting in conjunction with real world news organizations in the largest news market in all of Utah. By allowing students this type of hands-on work, they are able to learn from the actual trendsetters in the industry.
Above: Capital West News Twitter outlets have been retweeted and picked up by various news organizations and opinion leaders around the Utah Area including Deseret News, The Sanpete Messenger and The Sun Times.
For enrollment information, contact the School of Communications at (801) 422-2997.
Find out more about the Salt Lake Center, including transportation options.