USM to Host Open House for Expanded Student Media Center

Published 1:20 pm Saturday, October 9, 2021

“The student voice echoes across time and space.”

So believes Dr. Edgar Simpson, director of the School of Communication at The University of Southern Mississippi (USM) as he underscores the importance of the updated Student Media Center on the Hattiesburg campus.

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“The Student Media Center amplifies, helps shape and memorializes the beating rhythm of generations,” said Simpson. “Without that sound of change, we as a University community are less.”

Following a year of major restriction due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Simpson and his colleagues are excited to hold an open house for the Student Media Center on Wednesday, Oct. 13. The first session will be held from 4:30 to 5:15 p.m. for faculty and administrators, followed by a 6 to 6:45 p.m. session for students.

The sessions will begin at Stout Hall with an overview of the Center, explaining why it matters and what projects the faculty and staff are undertaking. The program will also include a tour of the Student Media Center facilities in College Hall. Of significant note, is the launch of SMTV, a weekly news program produced by students.

“The Open House is designed to introduce and reacquaint the University community to all of the opportunities available,” said Simpson. “While USM has always had a vibrant student media presence, we spent the virus year planning and expanding what we do. The goal is for every USM student who has a desire to create media, sell advertising, launch a PR campaign, dive into social media etc., to be able to do that in the Student Media Center.”

Simpson points out that SMTV has been under discussion for quite some time. USM has long featured broadcast and media production programs but did not have a regular/routine outlet for students to practice and hone what they were learning in the video, sound, and television fields.

“We are doing this in a converged environment, which is reflective of what our students will see in the media industries,” said Simpson. “Convergence is the idea that our students will be asked to do a variety of tasks, from writing to shooting video to creating graphics. With the addition of SMTV, the student sales team and the Creative Division, students can see how information, creative work, and advertising can work across platforms, from social media to the newspaper to radio to the Internet to the new show and even iterations we can’t yet fathom.”

To learn more about the School of Communication at USM, call 601.266.4258 or visit: