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Advertising Communication

  • Bachelor of Science Major
  • Minor
  • Erie, Pennsylvania

Located in the Center for Communication and the Arts, the program has access to the resources of all of the University’s communication, media and arts faculty and technology under one roof; students benefit from the synergy this co-location provides.

  • GU Possibilities
    • Class projects allow students to build the portfolio of work that potential employers want to see. Portfolio building starts during a student’s freshman year, preparing him or her for a career. This is a great advantage for graduates looking for their first jobs.
    • Located in the Center for Communication and the Arts, the program has access to the resources of all of the University’s communication, media and arts faculty and technology under one roof. Students benefit from the synergy this co-location provides.
    • Gannon University’s student-operated radio station, 90.5 WERG-FM, was the national champion in two categories at the annual Intercollegiate Broadcasting System Conference in 2017, and for the third consecutive year, a finalist for the Best College Station in the Nation award, an honor the station received in 2014.

    You Will Learn

    The art of advertising has been a part of the selling process for as long as people and organizations have exchanged desired products and services. Today, with a multitude of media attempting to reach targeted audiences, businesses and organizations need to take an integrated approach. An integrated marketing communication effort combines the promotional mix of advertising, public relations, direct marketing, sales promotion and internet/social media to provide one clear, consistent and targeted message. The advertising communication program in the University’s School of Communication and the Arts provides students with an integrated approach to the discipline. Classes, assignments, projects, practica and an internship draw on all of the promotional tools to ensure the knowledge and skills necessary for career success in the fast-changing world of the integrated promotional industries.

    You Will Experience

    Students enrolled in the advertising communication program are required to complete one three-credit internship prior to graduation. Students are encouraged to complete additional on- and off-campus placements to better prepare themselves for life after graduation. Placement locations can be local, national or international. Placement opportunities include:

    • advertising agencies
    • businesses and industry
    • government agencies
    • nonprofit organizations
    • public relations agencies
    • social media providers



    You Will Achieve

    The advertising communication program, taught as an integrated communication approach, can lead to jobs at a variety of client- and agency-side marketing, public relations and advertising organizations, with the government and in the nonprofit sector. There is a strong demand for young professionals trained in social media in the public and private sector. Such opportunities include, but are not limited to, the following:

    • advertising account executive  
    • advertising account manager  
    • community relations specialist  
    • copywriter  
    • internet marketing manager  
    • marketing consultant  
    • market researcher  
    • media buyer or planner  
    • media sales representative  
    • press officer  
    • public relations manager  
    • social media specialist  


    You Will Earn

    Salaries in the field vary depending on the location and type of organization.

    1. Starting salary: $40,000
    2. Mid-career salary: $79,400

    All salary information is compiled from data gathered from the Bureau of Labor Statistics ( and/or PayScale (  

    You Will Study

    Example Course Descriptions

    Through its integrated curriculum, the advertising communication program allows students to draw on multiple areas of knowledge and skills necessary for career success in advertising and related fields. Advertising communication majors take various core and elective courses including:

    COMM 340: Fundamentals of Advertising

    This course explores the fundamentals of advertising, including: history of advertising, creativity, integrated marketing communication, advertising agency structure, the various media relative to placement and production, ethics in advertising, an introduction to the promotional mix elements and career opportunities in the industry. Terminology and procedures will be introduced and incorporated in the presentation of advertisements and advertising campaigns.

    COMM 372: Principles of Public Relations 

    This is an introductory-level course on the topic of public relations. Strategies and communication tools are studied in relation to an organization’s efforts to communicate and position itself with its internal and external public audiences.

    COMM 400: Integrated Marketing Campaign Development 

    During this course, students become an in-class ad agency to compete and win the account of an actual local nonprofit organization. Students work with a local advertising professional who provides guidance and support. Through the application of the students’ previous knowledge and skills, students determine how their proposed campaign will influence not only their target audience, but the world around them as well.

    Liberal Studies Core

    The Liberal Studies Core Curriculum is one reflection of Gannon University's commitment to its Catholic identity. The Core's design offers students a defined, integrated, shared experience as the foundation for their undergraduate program.