The doors open and you step inside.
You arrive on the Carleton campus and make your way to Richcraft Hall, one of Carleton’s newest buildings and home of the Communication and Media Studies program – your new program.
The building is surrounded by greenspace and overlooks the Rideau River. You daydream of having lunch by the rapids with classmates on a warm autumn day. The Rideau Canal, a UNESCO World Heritage site, is just a short walk away. You can’t wait to lace up your skates and head toward Parliament and the National Arts Centre when winter transforms it into the world’s longest outdoor rink. A rumbling commuter train passes nearby. As you look south along the track you see the Canada Post headquarters in the distance. The building that once housed the Canadian Security Establishment and Canadian Broadcasting Corporation is also in view.
Transportation. Communication. Infrastructure. Nation… your mind races.
“There’s a certain energy here:
a city where the future is being shaped in real-time.”
Capitalize on unique opportunities.
Find your lane.
Shoulder to shoulder with people like you.
You’re sitting in a seminar next to people with degrees in communications, film studies, sociology, cultural studies, English, history, geography, even physics and biology. You’ve come to realize that you’re all here because of your shared passion for understanding the role of communication and media in shaping the world and our places in it. Your colleagues’ experiences are different than yours, but you will learn from them and bring your own knowledge to the table.
You have lofty questions and big plans that brought you here—now it’s a question of focus and execution.
Here you’ll acquire language and analytical resources to help shape your ideas and sharpen your insights. You’ll do research that advances meaningful knowledge. Your scholarship will transform your understanding of urgent questions and pressing social issues. You’ll engage in the community and challenge convention. That’s why you chose Carleton.
As your first term rolls on, you’re not disappointed. The discussions inside of class and out are compelling. The readings are nourishing. The professors are that perfect combination of knowledgeable and approachable. You’re being asked to apply your own perspective to some of the most important issues in contemporary life. It’s intoxicating and you are, well, you’re nerding out!
Where will your research take you?
Are you curious about the impact of technology on the cultural industries? How health and science organizations communicate with the public in moments of crisis? How social movements can drive change or how media representation interacts with identity politics?
Us too. At Carleton, there are no questions too big or small. Our world-leading researchers will support, amplify, and streamline your work in their area of expertise.
Time to throw some world-class events into your calendar.
Choose your adventure.
You’ve always been passionate about making sure good ideas speak to people, and as you dive deeper into your research, you build the analytical and presentation skills you’re going to need to make conceptual thinking accessible and compelling.
There’s a strong sense of community here that you’ve never experienced — everyone is interested in your research, and they want to see you succeed.
The environment you’ve chosen emphasizes collaboration and self-direction, which means you’ve been able to undertake experiential learning that both engages with community and advances your understanding of conceptual questions.
The collaborative specialization you’ve chosen—African Studies, Data Science or Climate Change—is helping you establish connections between communication and other fields to foster cross-disciplinary conversations.
You’ve been honing your critical thinking and research skills for years, and you have big aspirations. You’re going to lead a cultural agency, develop communication strategies for an NGO, or maybe help usher in a new generation of communication scholars as a professor.
You get access to leading experts that have the experience to support and challenge you on your path.
Meet your people.
Is it the caffeine or the adrenaline?
Either way, you’re buzzing as you head out to meet your supervisor. You’re running early, so you nervously wait by their office door for a few minutes, trying to act casual. You’ve read their work and you’re trying to remember all the questions you want to ask. You have no idea how they’ll receive you.
But when you sit down across from them, they already know your name. They smile, ask how you are, and mean it. They’re genuinely curious about your research interests and they’re interested to know more about you as a person. You realize they’re here because they want to support you and your research. They have the experience, resources, connections and time to guide you towards making this a reality.
“Passionate about your goals, guiding you towards making this a reality.”
Supporting you and your research.
Live your life.
It’s hard to capture how good it feels to be here.
Walking the campus with time to spare, you look around for somewhere to hang out. You spot a free picnic table beside the river, and sit to watch the sunset for a while. It’s inspiring to be around so many people who are just as invested as you are in improving, expressing, and enjoying themselves.
You sit on a bench near your favourite tree in the quad. The sun is glorious today. You love this area of campus for the people-watching, the access to MacOdrum Library, and the Arboretum which has fast become your go-to spot for a nature walk. A group of students are laughing and tossing a frisbee nearby. Two of your professors walk past -- they see you and wave.
Between the many student organizations and events, the natural environment of the campus, the friendly faces, and Ottawa’s nightlife and vibrant cultural scenes, you never have to worry about how to spend your time.
Make your mark.
The life you want to live.
Where did the time go? Your first year in Carleton’s communication program is coming to an end. The snow has melted, and spring is in the air. You have mixed emotions as you approach Richcraft Hall for your final seminar. You glance at the train crossing the bridge over the river – that scene has become familiar now.
You’ve completed your final paper and are eager for a break. But you’ll miss the energy of your weekly seminars with classmates who just months ago were complete strangers. They’re now your friends and colleagues.
You’ve learned so much already. You wrestled with foundational texts. You sharpened your analytical skills. You honed your teaching abilities. You’ve started to build relationships that you know will outlast your time here. You see your future with a surefootedness and a wide-eyed curiosity. The person you want to be – the life you want to live – is right here, right now.