Castonguay Named Director of New School of Communication & Media Arts

News Story: October 2, 2015

Professor James Castonguay, chair of SHU’s Department of Communication and Media Studies, has been named director of the University’s new School of Communication and Media Arts (SCMA) to be housed within the College of Arts and Sciences and located in the Frank and Marisa Martire Business & Communications Center. Castonguay has also served as director of SHU’s graduate programs in communication and was the founding chair of the Department of Media Studies and Digital Culture in 2003. Castonguay is a widely published scholar and a highly respected faculty member within the Sacred Heart community as indicated by his receiving SHU’s “Final Four” Teaching Award as well as the University College Faculty Award in 2010.

Prior to his arrival at SHU in 1999, Castonguay was a professor at the University of Michigan in the Communication, Film and Video Studies program. He is a graduate of the University of Wisconsin, Milwaukee, where he earned his M.A. and Ph.D. in modern studies, media studies and English. He also attended Clark University, where he earned a bachelor’s degree in sociology and screen studies.

Many major media outlets have recognized Castonguay’s expertise, requesting interviews, citing his research and quoting from his work. These publications include The New Yorker, Business Week, Broadcasting & Cable, the Wall Street Journal, the St. Petersburg Times, USA Today, U.S. News & World Report, the Boston Herald, Connecticut Post, Editor & Publisher, Reuters and Xinhau news services, as well as CNN, Fox News and the BBC. 

Castonguay serves on the Board of Directors of the Cooperative Educational Services Foundation, and was elected treasurer of the Society for Cinema and Media Studies (SCMS), the leading international academic organization devoted to the study of film and media. He has also served as an administrative officer to the American Council of Learned Societies, and in 2009 was the recipient of the SCMS Service Award.

“It is an honor to be named the founding director of Sacred Heart University’s School of Communication and Media Arts,” Castonguay said. “I am grateful to President Petillo, Provost Niesen de Abruna and Dean Robin Cautin for their leadership and continued support and to my colleagues in communication and media studies for their commitment to educating responsible and ethical media scholars, consumers and communication professionals.” 

“I am confident that under Dr. Castonguay’s leadership the new SCMA will thrive,” adds Robin Cautin, dean of the College of Arts and Sciences.

The rapidly growing SCMA program combines the social and cultural analysis of media and communication technologies with media production. “Our curriculum is interdisciplinary by nature and international in scope, blending theory and practice, the historical and the contemporary and the mainstream with the alternative,” said Castonguay. “Grounded firmly within the liberal arts and Catholic intellectual traditions, our degree programs strive to create lifelong learners, critical thinkers and responsible citizens who also have the production skills necessary to compete for the best jobs after graduation.”

Undergraduate programs in SCMA include communication studies, digital communications, media arts and theatre arts. Graduate programs include film and television production; corporate communication and public relations; media literacy and digital communication; and sports media and athletic communications. SCMA also offers an accelerated bachelor’s to master’s program in all of these areas. For additional information on any of the programs listed, please call 203-371-7755 or email communication@sacredheart.edu