Journalism and Public Communications B.A.

  • Two students work in the KRUA 88.1 FM radio studio

    Journalism and Public Communications B.A.

    Gain a broad range of experiences in media from the unique perspective of the region in order to prepare for work, graduate studies and life in a fast-changing, consumer-driven world.

Explore the journalism and public communications bachelor’s degree program at the University of Alaska Anchorage

Alaska has complex stories to tell, and you can help share them. With an emphasis on ethics, UAA’s Bachelor of Arts degree in Journalism and Public Communications addresses and adapts to current topics in media. You will learn how to use various communications platforms, from print publishing to public relations to social media, to intelligently create and distribute information with accuracy, truth, fairness and respect for diversity.

Journalism and public communications scholarships and financial aid
Apply for prestigious program scholarships to get help with college tuition, fees and other expenses. Each year, the department also awards up to $4,000 in an administrative scholarship for upper-class students with financial need to help them complete their degree program.

Online journalism and public communications classes
Choose from flexible options to earn your bachelor’s degree from UAA with online programs and courses.

Community engagement and service
Many of JPC's classes are community-engaged experiences, where students work with nonprofit organizations and contribute to public health communications, media literacy efforts and the like. Opportunities for internships with Alaska Public Media, Anchorage Daily News, and strategic communications agencies abound. 

Journalism and public communications student activities and clubs
Join student media and work for the award winning student newspaper and radio station or choose from 100 clubs on campus, including the Public Relations Student Society of America (PRSSA). PRSSA will help you build relationships in the campus and Anchorage communities for potential internship or networking opportunities.

Journalism and Public Communications B.A.

Degree Type:

  • Baccalaureate

Concentration: Journalism and digital media, strategic communications

Program Length: Four Years

Availability:Anchorage campus

Did you know..

Anchorage is the largest media market in Alaska, making the University of Alaska Anchorage one of the best journalism schools for entrepreneurship, exploration and engagement in diverse economic, political and social environments.

What can you do with a journalism or communications degree from UAA?

Whether you go on to graduate school or enter the workforce in a communications degree job, the knowledge and skills you learn from UAA will help you achieve success. Many journalism and public communications majors work for print, radio, tv and online news organizations, and in strategic communications for companies or agencies. Others have applied their bachelor’s degree to other fields, such as law, education, business and nonprofits, while some have earned a graduate teaching certificate to work in schools.

Journalism and public communications graduate programs
UAA alumni have been accepted into graduate programs across the country, including:

  • UAA Department of English
  • University of Alaska Fairbanks
  • University of Alaska Southeast
  • Loyola University Chicago
  • St. Louis University Law School
  • Christian Brothers University

Journalism and public communications careers
UAA JPC alumni work for various media outlets in Anchorage and beyond, including Fairbanks Daily News-Miner, the Anchorage Daily News, Alaska Public Media (Alaska Public Radio and Alaska Public Television), Channel 2 and KTVA Channel 11. Their roles are wide and varied, including:

  • Public information officers, communications directors and public relations specialists
  • Broadcast and sound engineering technicians
  • Journalists, writers and editors
  • Filmmakers and videographers, film and video editors and camera operators
  • Reporters, correspondents and announcers
  • Broadcast news analysts

By the numbers..

JPC alumni who are employed within four months of graduation.
2014 Alumni Survey

Journalism and public communications bachelor’s degree program highlights

In the program’s hands-on learning environment, you will build relationships with your classmates, the faculty and the Anchorage community for a variety of opportunities to learn, collaborate and grow.

  • Receive personalized instruction and mentorship by nationally recognized, award-winning faculty. They include Pulitzer Prize winners, an Alaska Native newspaper publisher, a former NPR white house correspondent, and award winning photographers, videographers and web designers.
  • Impact Anchorage and beyond with undergraduate research on diverse topics and issues. Past student research projects include:
    • How transgendered people are covered in the news
    • Food security in rural Alaska
    • Communications and long-term consequences of the proposed Pebble Mine in Bristol Bay, the largest salmon fishery in the world
  • Go anywhere for a practicum or internship. Valuable career-related experience prepares you for jobs in journalism and public communications. With interests ranging from public information to strategic communications, students have interned for Alaska Public Media, Tundra Comics, the Anchorage Police Department, the Anchorage Daily News and Special Olympics. You may also qualify for financial aid through the APTI Journalism Internship Program.
  • Enhance classroom instruction with experiential learning. You can study abroad, participate in service learning and lead independent creative projects.
  • Gain hands-on instruction and experience using advanced equipment. As a journalism and public communications major, you will have direct access to digital cameras, audio recording and video production equipment, an audio lab and TV studio and three editing bays exclusively for students.

Amazing stories from journalism and public communications majors

UAA's journalism and public communications program was a huge part of getting my foot in the door over here. In fact, Alaska Public Media purchased a mid-term project I put together for a radio editing class I was enrolled in. My time at KRUA was also a major influence that got me into radio — and into the job I have today. I'm grateful to all of my JPC professors for their fantastic mentorship and enthusiasm to help me start my radio career.

Dave Waldron
B.A. Journalism and Public Communications ’07; Audio Engineer, Alaska Public Media
The audience watches as UAA debates against Yale

Dedicated to promoting public discourse at UAA and in Alaska, Seawolf Debate is a co-curricular student program that has earned regional, national and international acclaim while competing in debate tournaments around the world.

Seawolf Debate
A student works in the KRUA 88.1 FM radio studio

Led by JPC faculty advisors, The Northern Light newspaper and KRUA campus radio are co-curricular student media outlets for writing, speech, debate, and creative direction and production.

UAA Student Media

Journalism and public communications bachelor’s degree program curriculum

Gain a wide range of knowledge and experience in research, writing, data and technology while exploring ethical, legal and social issues in communications, journalism and media.

Supporting public debate and creative expression, the University of Alaska Anchorage’s undergraduate degree program in journalism and public communications offers extensive coursework in communication theory, reporting and storytelling skills and freedom of speech laws as they pertain to the press. Through opportunities to apply what you learn in professional settings and real-life situations, you will engage in leadership and career development while sharing perspectives and solving problems locally and globally.

In addition to popular video and film production classes, UAA’s Bachelor of Arts in journalism and public communications covers a variety of traditional and emerging media topics in the Alaska and global context.

Top classes for journalism and public communications majors

  • Discuss and cover specialized topics such as natural resources in the Arctic in Environmental Reporting.
  • Study changing and Selected Topics in Journalism and Public Communications, such as health and media or environmental reporting.
  • Learn about food and subsistence, from how to write a recipe to how to hunt and gather, in Alaska Food Stories.
  • Cover a session of the Alaska Legislature in Public Service Reporting, led by the Atwood Chair of Journalism.
  • Produce and publish True North Magazine, distributed to more than 2,000 JPC alumni and local businesses, in Magazines.