Professional Media Capstones
The Professional Media Capstone series provides students with opportunities to build their resume while helping their community. Capstone courses ask students to put theory into practice—to raise and consider questions of structural inequalities and enduring struggles for human rights, freedom, and power as a part of professional media and communication projects. You will work together with your peers across courses and majors to explore a common theme, listen deeply to the concerns of those within the community, and address important challenges through original research and client-ready deliverables.
In the 2022–23 academic year, the series will follow a climate change theme, and we’ll be partnering with Rocky Mountain PBS and local nonprofit clients. A series of four capstone courses will work together as an “agency” to conduct research, pitch newsworthy stories and documentaries, develop a strategic communication plan, and produce videos to meet our clients’ needs. Each course builds on the annual theme, while students build on the work of their peers in previous courses to aid in media pitching and creating deliverables.
Work with classmates, professors, and the Denver community to build a portfolio of professional work.
Media Studies Research (Fall)
Engage in real-world research on media related to the yearly theme, peer reviews, and conference-style presentations, setting the foundation for climate change projects across the department
As the informational foundation for the Department’s capstone series, this Media Studies Research course provides you the opportunity to collect data, formulate opinions, and produce writing and research to be used by your colleagues as part of a larger “agency” effort. You will plan, develop and conduct small-scale studies using diverse research methods, such as interviewing, textual analysis, ethnography and participant observation, and historical research. The final project provides real-world experience working in teams to generate original research, engage in peer reviews, and present your findings in a conference-style panel session.
Advanced Multimedia Journalism with PBS Partnership (Winter)
Produce mini-documentaries and written work that amplifies the voices of underserved communities of Colorado, and pitch your ideas to RMPBS Colorado Voices
Advanced Multimedia Journalism gives you the opportunity to research, pitch and develop newsworthy multimedia projects for Rocky Mountain PBS. Underserved communities of Colorado, including rural, BIPOC, LGBTQ+, people with disabilities, and religious communities will be the subject of our attention, and the content of your projects will be designed to amplify their voices to both online and television audiences. The course will culminate in the production of several short mini-documentaries and written pieces that will be submitted for consideration by the producers of the RMPBS program, Colorado Voices, and the PBS Video app.
Strategic Communication Seminar (Spring)
Develop a strategic communication plan complete with analysis and recommendations on strategy, audiences, and marketing materials specific to the needs of a local nonprofit client
The Strategic Communications Seminar allows you to gain professional experience working together as an “agency” to develop a communication campaign plan for a local nonprofit client. From audit and analysis, to targeted audiences and marketing materials, each team will create a complete communication plan and formally present their recommendations to a real client. Each individual will build their career portfolio with actual work examples from this live-project course. Past clients have included Denver Center for the Performing Arts, The Women’s Bean Project, Slow Food Denver, and Metro Denver Nature Alliance.
Film Studies & Production
Creating Films for Clients (Spring)
Work with a local nonprofit client to strategize, plan, and develop video using original research and journalistic storytelling tailored to meet their needs
As part of a larger “agency” effort, you will work with a local nonprofit client to develop a video specific to the client’s needs utilizing original research, journalistic storytelling, and/or strategic communication recommendations provided by your colleagues within the Department. You will gain hands-on experience in strategy and planning, with opportunities to specialize in writing, editing, directing, and producing. Throughout the course, you will identify and critique forms of creative action, strategies, and theories leveraged for social change while developing heightened sensitivity to representational issues related to communities that are marginalized and minoritized.
"Working with students on the Capstone project was a great experience for our organization. We were so impressed with how engaged the students were in our mission and the depth and thoroughness of their research and recommendations. We are excited to implement many of their recommendations and feel so fortunate to have been part of this project."Tracey Brummett Community Outreach Director, One Good Turn
"As a graduate of University of Denver it has always brought me pride as a journalist to work with students at the school. Our recent collaboration with the MFJS school has been a highlight for myself and our team at Rocky Mountain PBS. The students produced award winning work and took our feedback with grace."Linda Kotsaftis Chief Content Officer, RMPBS
"It was a really great learning experience because we were being pushed to produce the best product we could and we had to really work to create something unique.”Alex Welch Journalism Studies Major
Our Students in Action
Register for a capstone course
Professional Media Capstone courses help build your resume, create connections with future employers, and put you a step ahead in your career. Sign up for the capstone course best suited to your interests and career goals.