Joseph Whiting- Redefining The Strategic Organizational Communication Emphasis




My Project

Strategic Organizational Communications is the 3rd largest communication emphasis at Brigham Young University-Idaho. However, many don’t understand what SOC students study and a surprisingly large number of SOC students don’t know what they want to do with their degree after they graduate. The purpose of my project is to help current and future SOC students through career-pathways and job postings built using economic modeling tools and an emphasis restructuring plan intended to better prepare SOC students for their future careers.









Strategic Organizational Communication Emphasis Report

This report was built off of a survey distributed to all SOC and Organizational Advocacy students in the department.

Students were asked about their career goals, understanding of key industry topics and plans for post graduate education among other questions. Students were asked about their career goals, understanding of key industry topics and plans for post graduate education among other questions.




3 Pathways for SOC Students

Using the data from the above report and EMSI economic modeling I constructed 3 career pathways and 8 job posting personas. These personas show the students the lower and higher end of the prospective industry, the future outlook of the job, and the necessary education, skills and qualifications required for the position. Complimentary minors, clusters and certificates are also suggested to help students optimize their use of elective credits.




Comprehensive Program Redesign Proposal

  1. A new emphasis structure that emphasizes career preparation based on the three pathways and increased flexibility in the students ‘depth courses’

  2. An interdepartmental adoption of relevant courses that reduces demands on department resources and instructors

  3. The redesigning of three current courses with updated curriculums based on Stanford, MIT and other top universities 

  4. Three new communications certificates that would strengthen student diplomas and resumes in:

    1. Organizational Innovation

    2. Change Management

    3. Communication Outreach and Advocacy

Next Steps

The reports, pathways and proposal have been submitted to the Department Chair who received it enthusiastically and will be discussing it with the faculty in a future faculty meeting. My hope is to continue with this project through course development and strategic planning. I believe that I could be a valuable resource by developing the three courses this plan calls to be retooled, as well as an excellent experience for me in preparation for my Master’s degree in September.

Thank You

I would like to express my gratitude to:

  • Brother Embree my faculty mentor who inspired me to stretch myself over and over again and was the best mentor I could ask for during my entire time at BYU – Idaho

  • Brother Skinner who reviewed my proposal as the department chair and encouraged me to continue pursuing it after my graduation

  • Sister Scholes for her valuable help during my project and mentorship during my entire degree

  • The University Development Team at WGU where I am currently interning for their powerful insights

  • The outstanding Communications Department Faculty and Staff and the life changing experience I’ve had at BYU-Idaho that has made me a better man