posted on Feb. 9: Global Television Network chair in communications signals new direction


[img_inline align=”right” src=”” caption=”Daniel Woolf, Patrick O’Hara, Peter George”]Communication Studies at McMaster University has received a ringing endorsement of support today with the announcement of a $1-million gift from the CanWest Global Foundation.

The gift will create and endow the Global Television Network Chair in
Communications within the Faculty of Humanities.

“This endowment represents just one of the ways CanWest Global supports the communities in which it operates,” said Gerry Noble, president and CEO, Global Communications Ltd. “Hamilton will be no exception as we begin an exciting new relationship with this city and its people.”

Patrick O'Hara, general manager of ONtv, which is changing to CHtv on Monday, represented CanWest Global at yesterday's announcement.
“It's a tremendous honour to be able to contribute to the advancement of knowledge,” O'Hara said.

“CanWest Global has demonstrated in the most tangible way its commitment to Hamilton, the University, and McMaster students,” said McMaster President Peter George. “The creation of the Global Television Network Chair in Communications will provide new opportunities to understand better the complex nature of human communications and will help to build McMaster's expertise in communication studies.”

Complementing the communications focus within the Faculty of Humanities, the chairholder will pursue leading-edge research into the nature, function and evolution of communications.

Daniel Woolf, dean of Humanities, said, “The chair will be instrumental in McMaster's planned Communication Studies program which will examine issues such as the communications needs of business and industry, the analysis of film and broadcasting, communications strategies, cross-cultural communications, and the impact of globalization.”

Woolf said the generous gift comes at an “extremely opportune time and is in an area of critical importance both to our students and to their eventual employers. Communication Studies or Communication Arts has flourished as a discipline at many institutions across Canada in the past two decades – appropriately for the country that had produced in Harold Innis and Marshal McLuhan two great twentieth-century commentators on the art and history of communication, and its impact on wider cultural and social issues.”

Woolf said McMaster's Communication Studies program, to begin in September, will not duplicate what is being done at other institutions. The research and teaching will focus on four areas in which communication occurs ranging from the analysis of language, through cultural criticism, performance studies and the quantitative and qualitative impact of mass media, he said.
The program also provides an opportunity to work with the Faculty of Social Sciences “within which much of the teaching will be done,” Woolf said.

“It will also provide many of our students with opportunities to work within the communications industry-many of them, we hope at CHtv-on a short-term basis during their degrees.”

Photo: (L to R) Daniel Woolf, Patrick O'Hara, Peter George.

Photo credit: Shelly Easton