The SECA to COBAT Transition - Explained

May 15, 2023

If you (or someone you know) is a Communications, Digital Media, or Journalism major here at North Central University, you might have heard that the Communications Department of the School of English and Communications Arts (SECA) has been dissolved and will be incorporated into the College of Business and Technology (COBAT). Many questions have arisen about this change, so keep reading to get the latest information on the shift!


What is the change?

The first question one might have after hearing that there will be a change within SECA may be asking what exactly the change is. Why the sudden switch? Well the answer is a bit more complicated than that. The truth is that this plan has been in the works for a while, after several audits determining the success and quality of the program.


In a Town Hall meeting held by professor Mark Skeba, the new program director, Dean Bill Tibbetts, of COBAT, and other COBAT professors, essentially said that this decision is ultimately for the better. This will help to provide students with an education that is to the caliber it should be, filling in the gaps these majors had in their courses and programming before the change.


Who will be affected by this change? Students in the Communication Arts, Digital Media, and Journalism programs. If you are in one of these programs, you can be looking for the switch to occur this fall 2023.


What will happen to the current SECA programs?

Unfortunately, due to some of the issues of these programs previously mentioned, the solution North Central University has found is to discontinue these programs in their current forms. A new branch of COBAT will be opened, called Marketing and Communications, which will house the revamped program relating to these majors: Digital Communications.


This program will include classes now run by COBAT to have the best quality of curriculum, assignments, and real-world experience as possible. Many of the previously offered courses will be revamped and updated to our current world of marketing and communications to best prepare students for the fields they want to pursue. In addition to these course changes, they will also be decreasing the number of “theory” classes so that students receive more practical experience.


In regards to credits transferring to this new program, if one decides to switch to this new Digital Communications major, all of your credits from your original program will transfer over. If you choose to switch to a completely different program, though, your credits may not transfer from your current major.


If one is a Freshman or Sophomore this year, Skeba and Dean Tibbetts recommend that they switch to the new revamped and combined major, as their credits will all transfer and they can still focus on specific aspects of communications and digital media within their program if they talk to their advisor and professors about it. However they suggest that current Juniors and Seniors stick with their current degree program and they will be sure to variance the classes that may no longer be offered due to the changes.


Who should you contact?

The main two people students should contact if there are any lingering questions about classes, programs, majors, variances, or anything else are professor Mark Skeba (who is also your advisor if you switch to Digital Communications) and Dean Bill Tibbetts. You can find their contact information in the Faculty Directory on Skyline. If this change affects you, you also have most likely already received several emails from both of them about the switch! 


Wrapping it up…

Overall, this program is designed to best benefit the students and has been in the works for quite awhile. It is okay to have lingering questions and nervousness about the change, but professors and leadership want to help you to feel as least stress as possible, so please feel free to reach out to the people mentioned earlier in this article with any questions or concerns you may have.

Let’s talk about the not-so-sudden change for communications and journalism majors