The School of Media and Communication (SOMAC) at Taylor's University continues to foster an environment of knowledge and innovation by hosting a series of engaging talks and workshops featuring esteemed guest speakers from various fields. These "One Hour with the Industry" events aimed to provide academics and students with valuable insights and practical strategies to excel in their respective disciplines.
Masterclass on 'Embracing Digital Transformation in Strategic Communication Industry'
Dr. Suwichit Chaidaroon, a distinguished Scholar from the National University of Singapore (NUS), was invited to conduct a masterclass for SOMAC students which focused on the digital transformation taking place in the strategic communication industry. Dr. Suwichit shared his expertise and provided insights into the rising trends and technological progress driving the industry. During the masterclass, students had the opportunity to gain experience practical skills and deeper understanding of how to navigate this evolving landscape. The engaging discussions revolved around intriguing topics, including the utilization of Augmented Reality (AR) and Virtual Reality (VR) to elevate the audience experience, the significance of comprehending big data for effective campaign planning, and the role of Artificial Intelligence (AI) in expediting communication processes within the strategic communication field.
Workshop on 'Pedagogical Innovation and Managing Contemporary Challenges in Media & Communication and Related Social Sciences Curriculum'
Dr. Suwichit Chaidaroon has also conducted a workshop with the intent of supporting academics within the spheres of communication, media and associated social sciences, to stay current and efficient in their pedagogical approaches. The workshop entitled 'Pedagogical Innovation and Managing Contemporary Challenges in Media & Communication and Related Social Sciences Curriculum' addressed the social, technological and ethical challenges facing the industries and provided practical insights and strategies to create an engaging and relevant curriculum that prepared students for the demands of the media industry.
Seminar on 'Covering Contentious Issues During Difficult Times'
Renowned Journalist R. Nadeswaran, popularly known as Citizen Nades, enlightened the students from Media Law and Ethics class on the art of covering contentious issues during challenging periods. The session provided valuable insights into ethical reporting and navigating sensitive topics. Citizen Nades's extensive experience in journalism added a unique perspective to the discussion, inspiring attendees to uphold the principles of integrity and responsible journalism.
Seminar on 'The Power of Sustainable Value: Leveraging Value-Driven Marketing Practices'
The next seminar was on “The Power of Sustainable Value: Leveraging Value-Driven Marketing Practices” by Adjunct Professor Mohd Said Bani or well-known as Prof. Bani among the students. He is also the President of Public Relations and Communication Association Malaysia, and the Founder and Managing Director of bzBee Consult Sdn Bhd, an integrated PR agency. During his talk, the Public Relation students were given insights on client engagement and sustainable marketing communication practices, which are two of the most important aspects in running a successful Public Relations agency today.
Guest Lecture Session on 'Flop & Turn of Hand: Switching – Up the Bad Odds in Publicity'
The PR students also had opportunity to meet the International Adjunct Professor Harold Geronimo, who is the President of the Public Relations Society of the Philippines. In his guest lecture, Adjunct Professor Harold with his topic “Flop & Turn of Hand: Switching – Up the Bad Odds in Publicity” captured the students’ attention with his international and recent examples of case studies on bad publicity. Adjunct Professor Harold is also the Vice President and Head of the Public Relations and Media Affairs in Megaworld Corporation, Manila, The Philippines.
Guest Lecture Session on 'Artificial Intelligence & Public Relations'
In line with the wide usage of Artificial Intelligence (AI) in our working lives, newly appointed Visiting Professor Kim Fajardo from College of Communication, Polytechnic University of the Philippines was invited to deliver his lecture on “AI and PR” virtually. His “Man vs Machine” case study showed very clearly that AI cannot replace human relationship, a consolation to the students about the sustainability of future jobs in the PR industry.
School of Media and Communication's initiative of hosting guest speakers has successfully stimulated academic and professional growth among both students and faculty. The diverse range of topics covered, from digital transformation in strategic communication, pedagogical innovation, media and democracy, to ethical reporting, financial planning, sustainable marketing practices and AI in PR, were instrumental in providing comprehensive industry insights.
The feedback from the students on all the talks was very encouraging. There will be several more “One Hour with the Industry” seminars. Stay tuned!