Interior Design and Communication Department face reaccreditation

Interior Design department showcases new work.

Andrea Rongo

Interior Design department showcases new work.

The next few months will be critical for a pair of campus departments undergoing reaccreditation.

Buffalo State’s communication and interior design departments each will receive important visits from their respective accreditation agencies next month.

Six years ago, the communications department worked for recognition from the Accrediting Council on Education in Journalism and Mass Communications. The ACEJMC is an international accrediting body known for accrediting journalism programs all around the world.

The communication department is ready for its reaccreditation, a process that began about a year ago, department chair Joe Marren said.

The interior design department is also up for reaccreditation.

“The Interior Design Program in the Interior Design Department has been accredited by CIDA (Council for Interior Design Accreditation) since 2000 and has just completed a reaccreditation site visit on Sept. 14 – 17,” Terry Postero, chair of the interior design department said, “The results look positive and we will have official notification from CIDA in March 2014.  Accreditation site visits take place on a six-year cycle.”

According to its website, the interior design department is nationally accredited by the Council for Interior Design Accreditation and National Association of Art and Design. The department has been holding an exhibition for its accomplishment at Upton Hall.

Marren shared that the communication department had a “laundry list” of things to do to apply for accreditation.

After the two-year process of checking off the list, the department was officially recognized.

Six years later, the reaccreditation process begins, which is a yearlong excursion.

Professor Ron Smith spent all of last semester writing a 300-page self-study for this event. The self-study is an assessment stating what the department can do and how they did it.

A team from ACEJMC takes the time to interview current students to be assured that the department satisfies the criteria, which includes graduation rate, student happiness, and diversity. After the team visits and after two out of state meetings, the final approval will be given in May.

Marren shared his feelings on the reaccreditation.

“It’s about how our students feel, and I want our students to come here and feel proud,” he said.

Marren said he wants students to be able to use this accreditation as an aspirational goal and recognize that the school is one of six of the best communication departments in the state.

Buffalo State public communication graduate Jennifer O’Donnell can attest to this.

The department helped O’Donnell get into a graduate program in Los Angeles, where she received her master’s in screenwriting. She now works in TV development for Asylum Entertainment, a Los Angeles-based TV and film production company.

“I was also given opportunities via professors who had connections in both the ad industry and entertainment industry for internships even after I had graduated,” she said.

Because of upper level classes, O’Donnell said she was prepared for what was next after graduation.

Sara Ali can be reached by email at [email protected].