Quinnipiac Introduces New Program in Los Angeles


Pack your bags Bobcats and get ready for sunny southern California.

Quinnipiac University, nestled in Hamden, Conn., has begun a new program where students can spend a semester living and working in Los Angeles, Calif.

The university wanted to expand its academic experiences further than just the classroom while giving students the opportunity to get real world experience at the same time.

“I think a couple years ago the idea was to create an opportunity for students to branch out of their comfort zone – a lot of students have a tendency to go to N.Y. for internships.  Quinnipiac felt this could be a good opportunity for students,” said Professor Joseph Catrino, the assistant dean of career services for the School of Communications.

According to Catrino, close to 50 students from the university have applied, approximately 30 of which are students in the School of Communications.

“I think we’ll get about a dozen to 15 students that’ll end up going for the summer which is fine, we want to kind of start off small and let it develop,” said Catrino.

While in Los Angeles, students will pursue a professional internship and earn academic credit.  All the students are responsible for obtaining their own internships.

Quinnipiac University in Los Angeles will begin in summer 2014 and students will also have the options of attending the program during the Fall 2014 and Spring 2015 semesters.

Catrino explained that students attending the program this summer will not be taking classes, they will only be working at internships.

“During the fall and the spring semesters we’re actually going to teach a couple classes out there and the students will also do online courses through Quinnipiac, taught by Quinnipiac professors.  It will all be Quinnipiac credits,” he explained.

Courses such as QU301, business ethics and an entertainment course will be offered as well as classes that relate directly to the student’s majors.

“I believe it’s a great opportunity for communications students because if you want to get into the business, L.A. is the perfect place to do so and to build connections for when the real world comes our way,” said junior film, video and interactive media major, Danielle Berkowitz.

Students who have looked into the program hope it will help them to gain a greater understanding of their chosen field as well as build connections with professionals who could help them in their careers.

“I hope students gain the real-life experience, and get a knowledge and understanding for what their futures will entail, and bring back those skills to Quinnipiac to help them advance as a student as well,” said Berkowitz.

“At the end of the day internships are a vital component to undergraduate studies and I think this is an opportunity to kind of branch outside of the typical N.Y., Conn., Mass., N.J. internship line,” said Catrino.  “I think it’ll allow students who are seeking opportunities in the entertainment industry to actually get out there and get some experience and meet some people, so it’s a huge opportunity for our students.”

Senior broadcast journalism major, Nick Colucci, agreed that this was a great program for Quinnipiac to put into place.

“Had this program been introduced before my senior year, I definitely would have jumped at the chance to go.  It’s a great opportunity and all students should at least look into it,” he said.

When the idea for this program first came about, it was originally meant for students in the School of Communications.  Now it is a program that the entire university can take part in.

“Over time, more of the deans from the others schools heard about it and wanted to get involved so now it’s a university program,” said Catrino.

“I personally believe that this program is perfect for business and communications majors more so than health science and nursing – but if people from those majors were to attend the program then they could at least see what it’s like to live and work in a city like that,” said health sciences major, Stephanie Coe.

Dimitri Restaino is an entrepreneurship major graduating this year.  He is staying at Quinnipiac as part of the one-year fast track MBA program and is considering attending the program.

“I have always been interested in LA and I would like to make some good connections while out there,” he said.  “I think it would open the minds of students and show them that there are other options for internships than N.Y. and Boston. There is a lot to do out there and it is also really beautiful.”

The program is open to undergraduates and graduate students who have a minimum of 57 credits, a minimum 3.0 GPA and no existing or pending conduct sanctions.

Students will be housed at Oakwood Worldwide temporary apartments.

Applications can be found online on Quinnipiac University’s website.  Students must submit all the material required by their specific school and have a Skype interview with the programs director, F. Miguel Valenti.

“I think this is going to be a good program.  I think it’s going to experience some growing pains as any new program will and I think it’ll get up and running and going and be strong,” said Catrino.




The Opposite of Networking is NOT Working


On Thursday, April 3, 2014 members of Quinnipiac University’s School of Communications took a trip to The Roosevelt Hotel in New York City to take part in a mentor program.

The mentor program, set up by the assistant dean for career services, Joseph Catrino, consisted of Quinnipiac University alumni in the communications field.  There were professionals in public relations, media, film, and print and broadcast news.  The alum ranged anywhere from those who graduated in 1983 to some who graduated in 2013, allowing for a variety of perspectives in the field.

“I didn’t know what to expect going in, but in the end I was able to take a lot out of it.  I met and networked with a bunch of really successful people that I know are willing to help me. It was definitely a successful day,” said Teresa Santos, a senior broadcast journalism major.

The event started with lunch and a panel discussion.  Each alum talked about what they were involved in at Quinnipiac, how they got into their fields, the jobs they’ve had and what they entailed.  After all 15 panelists talked, students were given the time to ask questions about internships, job hunting, and ways to stand out from the crowd in their careers.

“They made me feel comfortable.  It definitely eased my mind about finding internships because now I have made connections with the mentors that were at the event,” said sophomore public relations major, Amanda Barroca.

“I know as a broadcast journalism major at events like this it’s often hard to find someone in your field because most of them do public relations.  But at this event I felt that there were plenty of people I could network with and even the mentors who were in public relations, had connections in my field and were able to connect me to them,” said Santos.

The internship and job hunt can be stressful, frustrating and scary.  However, after the question and answer session, students had the opportunity to have one-on-one time with mentors to ask for advice, have them look over resumes and to make connections through the mentors with people who can help further their careers.

“I’ve been so stressed lately because nothing has been working out for me, but talking with the mentors calmed my nerves about finding a job.  I connected with some of the mentors after the event and they were able to connect me to people they know.  I was able to get my resume out to more people in the industry,” said Santos.

All the students were encouraged to reach out to the mentors – call or email them, and connect with them on social media sites such as LinkedIn because they never know who might know someone in their desired field.


A Balancing Act: How Athletes Balance their Time & Prepare for the Real World

In previous posts, I’ve detailed how students within the School of Communications are preparing for the real world.  Now what happens when some of these students are Quinnipiac athletes?

Seniors Aine McKeever and Mary Corrado both play on the women’s soccer team at Quinnipiac.  Being a Division I athlete comes with a very time consuming schedule because of practices, games, classes and homework.

McKeever and Corrado shared with me how they help balance everything and prepare for jobs and grad school with the help of professors in the school.

Upcoming Events

There are a few upcoming events in Quinnipiac’s School of Communications that will help  graduating communications students prepare for life after May 18, 2014 – Graduation Day.

Friday, March 21 – Resume/cover letter review session from 10am – 11am
Monday, March 24 – Resume/cover letter Development Workshop from 10am – 11:30am
Friday, March 28 – QU Media Mashup and Career Fair in the Rocky Top Student Center
Thursday, April 3 – School of Communications Mentor Program in NYC

Help is Always There When You Need It

Class schedules are always hard to work around so I was unfortunately unable to take the career development class.  However, the one good thing about being part of the School of Communications is that the professors are always available to help.  Over the past three and a half years, I have formed great relationships with the professors that I’ve had.  Whether I email them to set up an appointment to meet or just simply stop by their office, they are so welcoming and willing to help.  I have met with Professor Catrino countless times for help with my resume and cover letters, for recommendations for internships and for help with projects.  I’ve sat with other professors to discuss the internships and jobs I’ve applied for.  They’ve all given me such great advice on apply for jobs, fixing my resume tape and all the projects I’ve done over the years.  Even though I was unable to take the class, I am still so appreciative for all the help and advice my professors have provided me with and I honestly feel that I am ready to enter the real world because of everything they did for me.