Douglas professional writing program to reboot
By Monica Rolinski, Contributor
After 22 years of training professional writers, editors, and media professionals, the Douglas College Print Futures program is no more.
“[It] is being redesigned as a one-year post-degree diploma,” explained Maureen Nicholson, coordinator for the Print Futures program.
The tentative name for the redesigned program is Professional Writing and Communication. Douglas College and the faculty of Language, Literature, and Performing Arts hope to market the program over the winter, with enrollment slated to begin in May 2014.
Full-time Print Futures student Jacki Mameli is conflicted about being part of the last class to graduate as a Print Futures student. Having already gone through the program’s first year, she feels that there will be quality grads with “wide, varied skills and strengths that will complement changing workplaces.”
Aiming to reflect systematic changes in writing and communications fields, the program hopes to give post-degree graduates supplementing career skills. Theoretically, grads with both a degree and an applied diploma, together with hands-on experience, have more to offer an employer.
Holly Phillips, also a full-time student, is not happy with the changes stating that “this program is exactly what I was looking for in terms of content, time-commitment, and money.”
She would not have been admitted in if she were applying this year—not without a degree. “That would have been a major loss to me,” Phillips said.
Glauce Fleury, on the other hand, would have preferred the shorter post-degree diploma program. As an international student, it would have been cheaper—rent and food-wise—for her to spend one year abroad rather than two. “Plus, since I have a degree and a post-degree in Brazil, I guess it would be more interesting to have a post-degree abroad on my resume than just a diploma.”
Jean Manky, also a part-time student, is quite pleased that the changes won’t be affecting her negatively, claiming, “Maureen has made it easier than I thought it would be for part-timers.”
Students like Manky can continue as a part-time students and will participate in the portfolio show, the annual Print Futures showcase. In this case, the door has been opened for non-program college students interested in editing, design, and media communication; they will have the opportunity to take an open-enrolment section or two as part of their studies at the college. According to Nicholson, these courses may be offered as communication studies credits beginning in January 2014.