The Howard University School of Communications celebrates its 45th anniversary this year, and on October 23, 2016, it will officially announce the naming of the school as the “Cathy Hughes School of Communications.” The School is the third largest of the University’s 13 academic schools and colleges. For more than four decades, the School has trained communication and media professionals in premier programs such as advertising, audio production, journalism, media management, public relations, film, organizational communication as well as graduate programs in media studies and speech-language pathology. Its graduates are known at the local, national and global levels for their leadership within and across diverse communities through communication research, professional practice, innovation, job creation, social justice, and service via knowledge, skills and cutting-edge technology.
In 1971, Mr. Tony Brown became the founding Dean of the School of Communications. That same year the university began broadcasting WHUR-FM (a commercial radio station). Ms. Cathy Hughes was named WHUR general sales manager in 1973 and general manger in 1975. The first students with a MA degree in speech correction in the Department of Speech also graduated in 1971. In 1974, the School established WHBC-AM, a student-run radio station that now broadcasts 24 hours a day on-line at www.whbc1830am.com. From 1974-1975, Dr. Lovenger Bowden served as Interim Dean.
The School of Communications embraces the arc of communications from the arts through the sciences. The School has a legacy of excellence demonstrated by its track record of graduating the most African American communications professionals. The School prepares students in an environment that promotes high expectations, demands rigorous study, introduces innovative learning experiences, exposes students to outstanding communication and media professionals, and offers them opportunities to participate in programs that illustrate the profound impact true leadership in communications can have on society.