M.S., Northeastern State University
In an effort to keep pace with the media world and ensure fresh lectures, Assistant Professor of Media Chris Putman travels each year to locations providing the latest industry information. When Hollywood was her destination, she toured Sony, Warner Brothers and CBS studios. She explored the lots, studios, sets, props and costumes used in movies and television shows. Putman heard about studio and early star history, latest filming techniques and was able to experiment on camera with a green screen. She photographed the studios and sets to showcase during her Media and Pop Culture lectures.
To provide a relevant program of study, Putman adopts a for-profit client for her Principles of Public Relations class for whom the students write a senior prom for senior citizens event plan and then host the event. In her Branding & Promotions class, her students function as an agency to raise awareness for a nonprofit client. At the semester's end, the agency's leadership, the account executive, pitches the cause to real-world investors to raise funding in "Shark Tank" style. Students reap real-world experience and a national client's name for their resume. One student won a national award for her client work. Putman's takeaway is a satisfied heart.
In Publication Workshop, students learn more than publications concepts and design software. Student writers provide content for the Communication, Arts and Media department alumni piece, Communique Digital, an online and interactive magazine with video components. The publication has won numerous awards including Oklahoma Interscholastic Press Association's "Best in State" and placed number one in the nation in PRSSA's competition. Now the magazine has moved to social media and has its own Facebook page.
So how did Putman find herself teaching midlife? After a 25-year career in public relations, Putman desired to pass on her life experience to young minds. To do that she earned a bachelors in Mass Communications/Education and masters in College Teaching/Communications from Northeastern State University, has completed some doctorate work at Oklahoma State University, a business certificate and is state certified to teach journalism and seven areas of business.
After teaching at ORU 14 years now, Putman continues to find the students absolutely refreshing; loves their bright minds, tender hearts and hunger for God. "I've taught and worked for several colleges and universities, but none compare to ORU," Putman said. "The ability to pray in the classroom and integrate Christian principles into the curriculum is far more rewarding than simply providing material for a student to absorb."