Should I stay or should I go? Journalism vs. PR

Journalism and public relations faculties across North America are confronting diverging student attitudes about their future employment prospects. This, apparently, was evident at the latest AEJMC Convention in San Antonio. Ed Wasserman, writing in the Miami Herald, notes:

    "Why PR appeals now to young potential reporters no doubt has to do with the heavy cloud of economic gloom hovering over the news business. ...

    But PR is also promising something else to the young and impressionable: A role in contemporary affairs that's way beyond message creation, brand maintenance or advocacy. The PR professional is proposed as a senior counselor not just on what is persuasive and effective, but on what is right -- as chief integrity officer.

    As James Lukaszewski, a PR practitioner who consults on such matters, has written: ''The primary goal of public relations will be to create an environment of integrity within organizations.'' That's heady stuff." (Miami Herald, sub. req.)

Abstracts of the papers presented at this year's AEJMC convention are available, and the papers themselves may become available on the AEJMC archive at some point.