Words by Jon Staub
Completing a Communication and Media Arts major at Montclair State University has been a fortunate experience, aside from the unfortunate pandemic. In this major, I am forever grateful for discovering the Hawk Communications course that I will hold under my belt to better build my resume and future career.
Hawk Communications is a strategic, student-led communication agency that helps work with internal and external businesses and departments. The class is taught by Professor Keith Green, a veteran in the field of communications and public relations. I had previously taken a Writing for the Media course (CMDA220) with Green and thoroughly enjoyed that experience. Green’s teaching gives his students the ability to first hand interact with various subjects such as acting in public relations. After reading into Hawk Communications, I realized that I had been searching for a class that would give me opportunities and knowledge like this course.
Under the Hawk Communications team, I worked on two accounts: The Garden State Wine Growers Association (GSWGA) and a short film made by MSU alumni– Ex Disposer. Both accounts gave me a wonderful insight into both the film industry and corporation management. With the GSWGA, it was common for us to post on various social media platforms and to speak with Executive Director, Tom Costantino. Tom is a great communicator with students and very fun and easy to work with.
Working with the short film, Ex Disposer, was also a positive experience. I had never worked with a film that had successfully screened at some big-name movie festivals, including an upcoming screening at the Brooklyn Film Festival in June 2021. I was a bit intimidated in the beginning, nevertheless, the producer of the film, Amelia Spitler, calmed my nerves and helped my colleagues and me along the way. One of the greatest accomplishments for me was publishing an article for the Montclair School of Communication website on Ex Disposer.
I was pleased with the way I was able to stay organized and on top of all tasks, especially with balancing my five other courses and a part-time job. I often think about the saying, “If it was easy, everyone would do it,” and that always motivates my mindset. I think this class challenges you in all the right ways and prepares you for real success. I have no regret for signing up, and neither should anyone else willing to put in the work to succeed.
Although the class was fully remote because of the pandemic, I still felt pride in my education. In the years of schooling before my time at Montclair State, I hadn’t been a leading example of a stellar student. I had moved houses many times growing up and never felt settled at a place in my life before. For some time, I doubted myself and had made no successful plans for the future after taking a semester off from my local community college. The day I decided to apply to MSU and push myself to continue my education saved me. Thanks to leaders like Professor Green, I have felt secure, guided, and prepared for the world ahead, despite the overwhelming unknown.