In an effort to improve its core program and complimentary concentrations, Mercyhurst University’s Communication Department is going through some massive changes this 2014-2015 academic year. As part of this initiative, the department welcomed professor James Lohrey as a new full-time faculty member.
Lohrey, better known by students as “JLo,” is currently teaching Business and Professional Communication, Communication in Society and Visual Editing within the department.
Lohrey, a Buffalo native, described himself as “curious” and “always interested in learning about the changing technology and media.”
During his freshman year, Lohrey attended Loyola University, but soon decided to transfer to SUNY Buffalo State University, where he finished his undergraduate degree in Media Studies and Theater.
“I have always been interested in media and it just seemed natural for me to study that, but I also had a passion and love for theater, so I decided to combine both,” Lohrey said.
In 1998, Lohrey went on to earn his Master’s in Media Study and Theater also at SUNY Buffalo State University.
Before teaching at Mercyhurst, Lohrey worked for nine years at Mansfield State School, one of the Pennsylvania state schools, where he taught courses in Electronic Media, Speech Communication, Film Studies and Written Media.
Lohrey is also a published author. He has written book reviews, articles, held conference panels and produced a documentary focused on the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina titled Stories from the Gulf Coast: Katrina’s Aftermath.
When asked why he decided to come to Mercyhurst, Lohrey responded that his decision was greatly influenced by the campus’ “good reputation of producing quality students that are quickly hired after graduating.”
Lohrey also mentioned that he was excited about “taking on the challenge of putting together a brand new program for the Communication department and being part of all the changes that are currently happening.
“Traveling was a big one for me too,” he said.
He has an interest in being able to travel abroad with Mercyhurst and plans to teach Electronic Media, Media Television Study and Media Roll in Ireland in the next academic year.
Since arriving at Mercyhurst, Lohrey has been working hard on aligning the Communication department’s core curriculum to what employers are actually looking for in every applicant.
Because the Communication Department is now part of the Tom Ridge School of Intelligence Studies and Information Science, Lohrey is developing a strategy in which Communication students will be working closely and interacting with Intel faculty and students.
His aspirations as a new faculty member of the Communication department are to “Recruit more members for the program, generate more studio productions, and create a media organization.”
Lohrey encourages anyone who has an interest in public relations, advertising, marketing, event planning, corporate, nonprofit, and governmental communication, journalism, production, media environment and visual communication to look into the Communication Department and highly consider joining it.
“We are the best department on campus and with all the great changes that are happening, it is a great time to join us,” Lohrey said.