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Mass communications department celebrates 50 years

Photo by Jessica Warren
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Photos by Jessica Warren

The CSU-Pueblo mass communications department celebrated its 50th anniversary Oct. 9 at a formal event held at the historic Union Depot in Pueblo.

The main event sponsors included The Pueblo Chieftain, Parkview Medical Center and Centura Health Southern Colorado Hospitals.  The Chieftain has partnered with the department during its entire 50 years, providing student internships, graduate hires and other opportunities for young students to start their careers.

This year’s event organization committee included Trish Orman, Todd Kelly, Tracy Samora, Niki Whitaker, Trisha Pocius and Jenna Mangino.  Mass communications department chair Samuel Ebersole and Jen Mullen, professor emeritus, served as co-chairs.

Attendees of the auspicious event included CSU-Pueblo President Lesley Di Mare, current and former faculty members, alumni, students, representatives of businesses in the local community and several dignitaries who have impacted the department over the years.

The event also included a tribute to the founder of the department, Rick Pavlik, who recently passed away after a long illness.

Lighter moments included a video skit featuring former KOAA-TV meteorologist Craig Eliot in a quest to become an honorary mass communications alum.

Event speakers included Orman, Ebersole, Di Mare, director of the Alumni Association Tracy Samora and marketing communications specialist Niki Whitaker. CEO and President of the CSU-Pueblo Foundation also Todd Kelly made an effort to raise money for currents students in the department.

Several alumni were honored during the course of the evening, including those who have received the Distinguished Alumni Award and the Outstanding Graduating Senior Award throughout the years.

The event was a reflection of the tight-knit mass communications department and the impact the program has had on generations of students. Many graduates have moved on to become business owners, executives, leaders and journalists – all contributing to the impact and lasting legacy of the mass communications department.