Posts Tagged ‘Eastern Illinois University Department of Communication Studies’

Students and Faculty “Comm Together” at Annual Comm Day

June 4, 2016

On April 6, communication studies students and faculty connected through communication at the annual Comm Day event in Coleman Hall.

The event featured 17 interactive panels throughout the day hosted by communication studies faculty as well as professionals in the field. The panels ranged in topic from assembling an effective demo reel to understanding how conspiracy theories are communicated to learning about programs available in the department.

The chair of the Department of Communication Studies Dr. Stephen King stated, “Communication Day showcases the wonderful breadth and diversity of the communication discipline. The theme of ‘Connecting and Communicating for a Better Tomorrow’ perfectly captures how our communication practices can be used to connect and identify with others as well as solve a variety of social, cultural and political problems.”


Comm Day began in the 1960s as a week filled with Rhetoric and Public Speaking activities. It was called “Speech Week,” as the department was then called Speech Communication and the events lasted for an entire week.

Over the previous 50 years, both faculty and students have shaped the direction of this event into having its current balance between each concentration as well as between research and the applied.

Each planner of Comm Day provides a different incarnation of the event. The 2016 planner, Associate Professor Dr. Angie Jacobs, promoted connection between all participants in every area of the event from the opening ceremonies that provided history on the event to a communal lunch with students and faculty to the inclusion of every area of the department into the event.

At the end of the event, Dr. Jacobs hosted the closing ceremonies with a final round of prizes that were donated by local business. The department then honored office administrator Kim Turner for her years of service to the department.

Comm Day is scheduled for April 2017 and more information can be found at



EIU Speech Team Has Strong Showing at First Tournaments of 2014

October 17, 2014

The Eastern Illinois University Speech Team traveled to Indianapolis, IN for two tournaments and had a very strong showing at the first tournaments of the 2014-2015 competition season.

On Saturday, September 19th, the team competed at the Audrey Cunningham Forensics 500. Marques Brown, a junior Corporate Communication major from Bloomington, IL, placed third in Poetry Interpretation, fifth in Dramatic Interpretation, and third in Duo Interpretation with senior Psychology major Bethany Oxford, from Norris, IL. Sophomore Political Science major Austin Mejdrich from Charleston, IL, placed second in Impromptu Speaking, and sixth in Informative Speaking.

On Sunday, September 20, at Butler University’s This Day in History Tournament, the team took third place in team sweepstakes, with every member of the team bringing home at least one award. Marques Brown was the Tournament Champion in Dramatic Interpretation. Marques Brown and Bethany Oxford placed second in Improvisational Duo. Bethany Oxford placed second in Prose Interpretation. Austin Mejdrich placed second in Impromptu Speaking, second in Informative Speaking, and second in Editorial Impromptu. Sophomore Tyler Kahanec, a Pre-Business Management Information Systems major from Spring Grove, IL, placed second in Dramatic Interpretation.

Tylen Elliott wins 2013 Balasi Public Speaking Contest

December 3, 2013


Tylen Elliott, a Freshman Communication Studies major from Crete, Illinois (Crete-Monee HS), won the 2013 Balasi Public Speaking Contest tonight.  A panel of judges selected Tylen’s speech, entitled “Think Positively”, as the top speech delivered in the final round of the contest, sponsored by the Eastern Illinois University Department of Communication Studies.  Second place went to Darbey Jenkins, a Freshman Family & Consumer Science major from Greenfield, Illinois.  Third place was awarded to Mandi Mundhenk, a Sophomore Communication Studies major from Oblong, Illinois.  The other three students who competed in Tuesday’s finals and their speech topics were:

  • Heather Hunter (Sophomore Family & Consumer Science major from Monticello, Illinois) – Adopt Animals from Shelters
  • Amber Vanderwyst (Junior Psychology major from McHenry County, Illinois) – Go Dairy Free
  • Tiarra Webb (Sophomore Athletic Training major from Chicago (DuSable H.S.) – Get Tested for HIV/STD’s

The contest is named in memory of Betty Balasi, a long time staff member in the E.I.U. Department of Communication Studies.  Twenty-two students competed in the preliminary round of the competition Monday night.