By Robin McNamara
A recent decision to move the communications department to East York campus is being applauded by the department chairman, dean and program coordinators.
“It’s an absolutely marvelous opportunity to develop a very exciting centre for communication arts and we are certainly going to do that,” Communications Chairman Ron Dodge said in an interview.
“I think the college will be greatly enhanced by the East York location.”
The new location will give Centennial a higher community profile and will help the college compete more directly for students with Ryerson and other community colleges, Dodge explained.
The communications department is comprised of Corporate Communications, Book and Magazine Publishing, Print Journalism, Creative Advertising, Radio and Television Broadcasting, and Photography and computer graphics.
Space restrictions and inadequate equipment at the Warden Woods location prompted the move proposal and now that the decision has been made, plans can be finalized.
“We have the staff to make the department number one,” Journalism Co-ordinator John Lott said in an interview. “I hope that this move will give us the equipment to be number one.” While Centennial is a whole will benefit from the move, Dodge said each program has its own reasons for moving to East York. Corporate Communications
“It’s unique in North America at the post secondary level,” Dodge says of Centennial’s Corporate Communications program.
Students incorporate their journalism skills to a corporatesetting and when graduated they are hired by large corporate head-offices which are located downtown, Dodge said.
The East York location is almost on the Toronto border and puts students in a better spot for job placement and for business contacts, Dodge said.
“It just makes good sense for that program to be in a downtown location,” he added.
Gary Schlee, program coordinator said he agrees with Dodge.
“I think the move will be a healthy thing for all of the programs with photography and writing requirements,” Schlee said.
More specifically, he said that Corporate Communications students will be “more visible” to the industry from East York.
And he said he knows the program will profit from the space and equipment that will be provided at its new home.
“We’re optimistic that our equipment will improve because we have virtually nothing now,” he said.
“I am very pleased about the move,” he concluded. Book and Magazine Publishing
One of the major requirements for book and magazine publishing is an adequate design lab that Warden Woods campus
doesn’t have space for Dodge said. “And East York will.”
But a bigger advantage for the program will be its ability to expand Centennial Press to a community process Dodge explained.
The Press, under the direction of Craig Barrett and Dorothy Cummings, produces university and college text books, and some trade books that are oriented to East York.
“And there’s the potential for more of these things to be done by the Press and sold in a retail outlet, Dodge said.
He said theat the exposure to East Yorkers and to Torontonians would create a “tremendous opportunity” for a retail outlet for publishing.
For the journalism program an East York location is vital, says Dodge, because the program produces The Observer an East York community newspaper.
Until now the students have remained somewhat detached from East York, but “to have the Observer right in the lap of its own community” will be a tremendous benefit to the program and to East York, says Coordinator John Lott.
Lott also said that the downtown setting will help the college to compete with Ryerson’s journalism program.
And journalism students will take advantage of more photo space at the new location.
agencies are located downtown, Dodge said the creative advertising program will be “greatly enhanced” by the department’s relocation.
Students are required to visit ad agencies throughout their program and the new location will “greatly reduce the requirement to travel,” Dodge explained.
At East York, Centennial’s advertising program will be able to expand and become a competitive advertising agency for the community, Dodge said.
Radio and Television Broadcasting
The program that stands to gain the most, according to Dodge is RTV.
“Broadcasting by nature allows them to be wherever,” he said but the big advantage will be the ability to design the facilities “from the ground up,” he added.
“It has always been a patchwork process to get the facilities to meet their
attitude of ‘take it or leave it.” Dombeck also said that while an “instructional” daycare facility was included in the original design, they need “100 per cent funding” by the province before it could be built. “Pm not sure where the daycare stands,” he said. “But I’m hoping to get it on board at some time.”
Dombeck said that construc-tion will be “phased in” and that most of the renovations will occur during summer breaks, instructional needs in this building (Warden Woods),” Dodge said.
“We will overcome the ‘all darn and no sock phenomenon,'” he added.
The radio and television program is hoping to expand into the community once it is located in East York, Dodge said.
Nate Horowitz, coordinator of a newly formed photography and graphics program, says he is “enthralled” by the decision to move to East York.
Adequate space and facilities will allow the introduction of a new photojournalism program that “we could never have either here Warden Woods or anywhere else if we didn’t have the space,” Horowitz said in an interview.
Small color darkrooms, larger and better equipped black and white darkrooms and access to East York’s auditorium are some of the reasons Horowitz said he thinks the entire communications department will profit at East York.
And he said that access to downtown Toronto will be a “big plus”.
“By subway we are only about four minutes from Toronto” he said.
Horowitz said the improved photo production area, design lab, dark rooms and composing rooms built as an adjoining “lab centre” will make the new communication arts centre “the way it should be.”
“This will be a chance for the college to do some very exciting things,” Dodge said.