Students interested in public relations training will find just a few options in Wisconsin. Most of the schools in Wisconsin that offer direct programs in public relations are private schools and only offer programs at the undergraduate level. Public relations is available as a concentration within a communication program, can be combined with advertising or learned directly. Most programs include an internship in the field and require case studies, public speaking and writing classes. Below you can get more information on the four schools featuring undergraduate degree programs in public relations.
Located in Kenosha, Carthage College offers both an undergraduate major and minor in public relations. The bachelor's degree curriculum includes 28 core credits covering business technology, accounting, and marketing, along with public relations and communications courses. Students must also take three out of approximately ten available electives. Students complete their degree with a required capstone seminar, culminating in an exhibition, thesis, or special project. The public relations department at Carthage includes about ten full-time faculty members.
Founded in 1881, Concordia University in Mequon integrates Christian teachings into all of its programs, including those in the communications department. With three full-time faculty members, the communications department offers both a 40-credit major and 22-credit minor in public relations. This program includes web and graphic design, as well as public relations courses and an 18-credit communications core required of all majors in the department. Public relations students are additionally required to work one semester for the school newspaper, The Beacon.
This Jesuit University in Milwaukee offers more than 70 majors, including one in public relations. Marquette's public relations program is part of the Diedrich School of Communication, and Marquette is one of only 28 Jesuit universities to receive accreditation from the Accrediting Council on Education in Journalism and Mass Communication. The school offers a 39-credit public relations major, which incorporates elements of advertising into the curriculum. Internships are required for graduation. Local internship opportunities are available at companies such as Harley Davidson and Summerfest, a large annual music festival. Students may also choose to take public relations as a minor.
Mount Mary University
Mount Mary is a women-only college in Milwaukee that has operated for nearly a century. Grounded in Roman Catholicism, the school offers several undergraduate communications programs, including a concentration in public relations. The curriculum includes a variety of business-related courses in advertising, technical writing, and marketing. Technical skills, such as video production and computer graphics, are also a part of the public relations concentration. Students with a bachelor's degree can attend the college to earn a public relations certificate.
University of Wisconsin - River Falls
One of the first schools to serve Northwestern Wisconsin, this nearly 150-year-old UW System member rests on a 226-acre campus on the shores of Kinnickinnic River in River Falls. Located between Minneapolis, MN, and Eau Claire, WI, the University of Wisconsin - River Falls' public relations offering is actually part of the marketing communications program. The marketing communications major is a cross-disciplinary program that draws from the departments of journalism, marketing, communication studies, and more. Approximately 26 semester hours of the major are dedicated to mass media, persuasion, and related topics. In addition to marketing communications courses, students can participate in an internship prior to graduation.
School Comparison: At a Glance
|School Name||School Type & Setting||Public Relations Degree Programs Offered||Undergraduate Tuition & Fees (2018-2019)|
|Carthage College||Private four-year, Evangelical Lutheran, not-for-profit; midsized suburb||Bachelor of Arts in Public Relations||$43,550*|
|Concordia University||Private four-year, Lutheran, not-for-profit university; large suburb||Bachelor's in Public Relations||$29,450*|
|Marquette University||Private four-year, Jesuit, not-for-profit; urban||Bachelor of Arts in Public Relations||$41,870*|
|Mount Mary University||Private four-year, Roman Catholic, not-for-profit; large city||Bachelor of Arts in Communication with a Public Relations Concentration||$30,100*|
|University of Wisconsin - River Falls||Public four-year; distant town||Bachelor's in Marketing Communications|| $8,025 in-state;
Source: *NCES College Navigator