From the time we are born to the time we die, health remains a core part of human life. Health and medicine are growing fields in the United States, which spends 16% of its GDP on health care. The strategic importance of effective communication in health care settings cannot be understated. In recognition of the critical importance of communication to health and wellness, the Department of Communication's Health Communication Pathway is one of nine core pathways available to undergraduate Communication majors and graduate students.
The Health Communication Pathway provides students with a theoretically rich and practically relevant education in how health messages are cultivated, negotiated and understood across a wide range of communication contexts spanning intrapersonal communication to the mass media. The Health Communication Pathway serves as a gateway for internships and careers related to health and medicine, and furthers the department's mission to guide students toward developing the skills, knowledge and abilities necessary to use communication to create a more civil and humane world.
Faculty members who actively research and teach in the Health Communication Pathway include Professors Lisa Keränen, Barbara Walkosz (emeritus), James Stratman and Yvette Bueno-Olson. Both professors and adjunct professionals teach courses in related areas.