So, it’s not just a communications major?

No, it’s not! Let’s break it down. Our Steinhardt School of Culture, Education, and Human Development is home to Media, Culture, and Communication. The program offers more than your average communications degree. According to Steinhardt, it is “grounded in the liberal arts, providing [majors] with the necessary tools to analyze the…cultural dimensions of our media landscape.” Simply, MCC students learn foundational skills and concepts that are applicable across the media and entertainment industries. This enables them to investigate and narrow down their individual interests. 

Furthermore, the program comprises five main areas of study: Global Communication & Media, Visual Culture & Sound Studies, Technology & Society, Media Industries & Politics, and Interaction & Experiences. They are not rigid tracks, but “thematic clusters to help students plan their path of intellectual inquiry through the major.” A Global Communication and Media class I am currently taking is called Business of Media. In this class, we dissect business elements within the social media, video/audio streaming, and gaming industries. This example illustrates how MCC classes hone in on niche areas of study.

How do you know MCC is for you?

When I arrived at NYU, I had a passion for media, but I did not have a clue where my strengths and interests would be most suitable. The current media landscape can be a cacophonous and sometimes overwhelming environment. Exploring this space as a first-year student, with its diverse mix of trends and paths, was daunting. For me, MCC provided a welcoming academic entry into the industry. Coupled with my professional and personal endeavors, I have become more comfortable in these bustling conditions.

From an educational standpoint, one of my favorite MCC classes in which I am enrolled is called Innovations in Marketing. This course falls under the Professional Elective category within MCC’s curriculum. It does not fall within the aforementioned five categories—I know, it can get confusing. We study modern marketing strategies that prioritize people at the center of their campaigns. I appreciate how this class moves beyond basic business concepts and applies them in realistic, creative contexts.

Additionally, when it comes to professional experience, NYU students can take advantage of jobs and internships throughout the year. There are always opportunities to get involved throughout the city. During my academic career, I have actively contributed to various roles. I worked for a media-buying company to strategize programmatic marketing tactics and an NYU professor conducting social media marketing. I also helped a federal institution develop digital assets for center-wide campaigns. These roles have equipped me with a range of unique skills. Such insights will prepare me for and instill confidence in my work within the media industry.

Moreover, on a personal level, I engage with media in many ways. I like to attend live tapings of shows like Saturday Night Live and The Late Show with Stephen Colbert. Attending these, I am able to get a behind the scenes look into how television is produced. Also, I love going to pop ups around the city and seeing concerts to stay inspired and in tune with the latest trends.

Seth Meyers and Amber Ruffin speaking with a moderator at a Paley Center Media event.
Last fall, I attended a Paley Center Media Event hosted by Seth Meyers and Amber Ruffin
Two green SNL tickets in people's hands (media)
During the fall of 2022, I saw a live taping of SNL.
What do current MCC students have to say about their program?

To amplify other perspectives, I interviewed other MCC majors to learn more about how they are tailoring the program to fit their professional trajectories.

Ella (she/her): I chose MCC because I wasn’t fully sure what I wanted to do as a career. MCC is a broad enough major that allows me to explore different fields without tying myself down. I am interested in the music business and have interned at a music venue in NYC as a booker. MCC classes have been super helpful in teaching me about current events in the media landscape, including music-related information. My favorite MCC class I’ve taken is Latino Media. 

Armaan (he/him): I study MCC because the courses sounded really interesting. Students can do a broad range of things with the degree. I have minors in politics and psychology that complement my major, and I want to be a corporate lawyer. MCC has courses that touch on data privacy, entertainment law, and intellectual property. My favorite MCC course is History of Media and Communication.

Grace (she/her): During my junior year of high school, I got into media studies and cultural analysis, specifically the international flow of media. MCC seemed like a perfect mix of all my interests. I’m looking into a lot of different fields: entertainment, fashion, journalism, etc. MCC’s flexibility can be a little daunting. Overall, I think it has allowed me to experiment with my interests and explore them to the fullest, which I feel like is the point of college. My favorite MCC class is Media and Identity.

Maria (she/her): Through MCC, there are diverse fields I can explore. There is social media, marketing, public relations, etc. It gives me the opportunity to get a glimpse of each profession, learn the basics, and understand which one I wish to pursue in the future. I wish to explore marketing as my professional career. MCC has guided me through this exploration by offering many classes that allow me to put what we have learned into practice through research and group projects. My favorite MCC class I have taken is Innovations in Marketing: Brand Strategy.

What are MCC alumni up to now?

In a recent survey that targeted MCC alumni,95% of respondents indicated they are either working full time or are in graduate school. Additionally, 73% were offered full-time employment in the first three months after graduation. MCC alumni can be found at companies like Google, NBCUniversal, The New York Times, and Sony Pictures. Our program is composed of ambitious, creative thinkers who are shaping the future of media and entertainment as we know it.

Two brunette girls in blue and black dresses at Metlife Stadium (media)
During the summer, my friend Makayla and I went to the Eras Tour.
An image of The Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon logo (media)
I've attended several tapings of The Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon.

Olivia Federici (she/her) is a junior studying Media, Culture, and Communication at the Steinhardt School of Culture, Education, and Human Development with a minor in the Business of Entertainment, Media, and Technology. Born and raised in the small town of Oxford, Connecticut, she brought with her to NYU a vigor to enrich her academic pursuits through conducting traditional coursework and immersing in the social fabric of the city. During the school year, she serves as an Admissions Ambassador for the Office of Undergraduate Admissions, as well as a Writing Tutor at the Writing Center. Off-campus, she embarks on photo walks, learning from those whom she meets along the way.