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Dr. Jake Turner Named Chair of Communication Arts & Sciences Department

By Rachel DeYoung ‘16

Staff Writer

With over 7 years of teaching and research experience at Merrimack College, Dr. Jake Turner has recently been promoted to Chair of the Communication Arts & Sciences Department. Dr. Turner has taught many communication courses such as Mass Communication, Intercultural Communication, Sports Communication, and Visual Communication just to name a few. On campus, Jake is an advisor of the Film Club, Radio Club (WMCK), and Gay Straight Alliance. He is also a Co-Chair of the First Year Experience Program.

In the past, Dr. Turner’s main focus has been on teaching, preparing for class, grading materials, and working with students. In his new role, his time is spent attending meetings, making higher-level decisions, and disseminating information to other Communication faculty members. He works more with other offices on campus, collaborating and generating ideas.

This change is different for him, as he is not spending any time in the classroom this semester. “Working with students is why I came to this job. However, this new role is a stepping-stone into future growth and allows me to think big picture and problem solve, both things I enjoy,” stated Dr. Turner.

This promotion not only serves as a transition for Turner, but for the Communication Department as well. The department recently hired two new faculty members and has diversified course offerings to include classes like Social Media and Humor in the Media. The department is also targeting their focus on internships and experiential learning opportunities to get students out into the field. Lastly, they are hoping to move into a new space, which could house all communication efforts on campus, including The Beacon, WMCK Radio, Media Center, offices, and classrooms. This space would create a community and ensure all these centers are less spread out.

“We feel like we’ve been doing a lot with a little in the Communication Department for many years, so we’re excited to see where we can take this program with our great new faculty and hopefully a new space that can bring all the parts of our program together under one roof.”

If you’re interested in joining the Radio Club, the Film Club or the GSA, email Dr. Turner at turnerjs@merrimack.edu