Next Generation Communications
Newhouse expansion project will broaden student
opportunities and enhance expertise in new technologies

The reputation of the S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications is a great source of pride for students, faculty, staff, alumni, and friends of the University. Newhouse graduates can be found doing the vital work of bringing news, information, and entertainment to millions of people around the world via print, radio, television, film, and the Internet. As fast as new media arrive on our desktops, in our living rooms, and inside our pockets, Newhouse people are there, putting these tools to work for an information-hungry society. “One of the reasons we attract so many talented students,” says Newhouse Dean David M. Rubin, “is that they know, whatever medium they choose to focus on, we have it. We are a full-service school.” Perhaps “the full-service school” would be a more appropriate description. It is difficult to find a survey of any kind—academic, professional, or in the popular press—that doesn’t place Newhouse among the top communications schools in the country and the world. In certain specialties, such as broadcast journalism and public relations, Newhouse often rates an enthusiastic “number one.”

Steve Sartori

SU Trustee Donald E. Newhouse ’51, president of Advance Publications Inc., announces a $15 million gift to the S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications.

On April 9, an important step in safeguarding that hard-won reputation was taken by Donald E. Newhouse ’51, president of Advance Publications Inc. and a member of the SU Board of Trustees. Appearing with Rubin and Chancellor Kenneth A. Shaw in the atrium of the communications center that bears his father’s name, Newhouse announced a $15 million grant from the Samuel I. Newhouse Foundation to be used in the construction of a third building for the complex. It is among the largest private gifts that Syracuse University has ever received, matching the founding gift made by Samuel I. Newhouse in 1964. “The school has reached a point at which it must expand to fulfill its mission,” Newhouse told a packed house of students, faculty, administrators, and the press. “The ever-changing, ever-increasing forms of public communication that new technologies engender have greatly multiplied the areas of expertise needed by professionals.”

In expressing thanks, Chancellor Shaw said: “The creation of Newhouse III will allow the school to intensify its mission to educate the next generation of professionals who aspire to careers in the media. It will enable the school to expand into new areas of leadership in education, research, and service.”

This latest act of extraordinary generosity on the part of the Newhouse family will, of course, add welcomed classroom and office space to the Syracuse campus. Moreover, it will improve the University with new kinds of space specially suited to the multidisciplinary needs of new communication media:

• Student writers, designers, photographers, filmmakers, performers, and others training to become part of contemporary public communications teams will have the advantage of classrooms as well as informal social spaces specifically designed to nurture interaction and collaborative effort. Consider the two journalism classrooms planned for the building: a modern newspaper newsroom that will also serve as a home to a web-based news service; and a broadcast facility that will house a student television news operation. The students will be able to broadcast their news to the public on a channel provided by Time Warner Cable of Syracuse.

Steve Sartori

Newhouse Dean David M. Rubin, left, SU Trustee Donald E. Newhouse ’51, and Chancellor Kenneth A. Shaw appear at a press conference announcing plans for a third building in the Newhouse complex.

• New composing and editing facilities will increase student and faculty access to technology. This not only ensures every student adequate time with equipment, but also allows the school to enhance its overall mission by giving greater emphasis to research, sponsored projects, and community service.

• A 400-seat auditorium will be built to accommodate the many industry leaders, scholars, and famed alumni who speak at the Newhouse School every year. It will also be host to chamber music concerts and other events that will broaden the education of Syracuse students.

• The Newhouse “brand” of education, already a symbol of reliability to the communications industry for undergraduate and graduate training, will gain greater impact. Continuing education courses, workshops, distance-learning degree programs, and international training will be offered to alumni and other media professionals.

According to Lynn Vanderhoek G’89, the Newhouse School’s director of external relations, “The new building will provide a solid foundation for the expansion of the school’s mission and the strengthening of its core values.” Thomas Walsh G’84, SU’s vice president for leadership gifts, agrees. “For the second time in less than 40 years, the Newhouse family has made a breakthrough contribution to Syracuse University,” he says. “This is an example of what can be done by people who understand excellence not as a plateau to be reached, but as an ongoing process requiring dynamic ideas as well as the means to implement them.”

—David Marc

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