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School of Communication and the Arts

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Educational Experience

Student experiential activities

We believe learning in a hands-on environment sets you up for success. Our students can chose to get involved in activities that include on-campus TV, radio, Public Relations agency, and sports reporting that give them the opportunity to do what they love.  Our clubs and organizations are student run and each has a faculty advisor that guides there activities. There are also select honor societies for student excelling in their coursework.

Photo of Marist Music Singers in Austria


Learn more about student clubs, organizations, and honor societies >>

Student Contests, Competitions, and Awards

Photo of students and professor at Young Ones Student Awards

We encourage students to participate in both national and international competitions.  Each specific department within the School of Communication and the Arts has a variety of opportunities for student to participate in each year.  

Students in the School of Communication & the Arts can expect a robust course of study strengthened by internship opportunities at top companies and a variety of unique educational experiences.  A strong liberal arts background is combined with a professional focus, preparing students for career success in the dynamic worlds of communication, fashion, and the arts. Following are some of the School’s signature programs and unique educational opportunities.


While the entirety of the campus is at our students’ disposal, many Communication and the Arts students find themselves in the Lowell Thomas Communications Center and the Steel Plant. 

The newly renovated Steel Plant houses the Fashion and Art & Digital Media programs. Key spaces in the facility include: digital labs, fashion studios, the MakerLab, fashion exhibition gallery, art gallery, Mporium retail laboratory, and Winter Garden. Learn more about the Steel Plant >>

Lowell Thomas, named in memory of the legendary broadcast pioneer who received an honorary degree from Marist in 1981, was recently renovated in 2014. The building houses classrooms, TV studios, video editing labs, computer labs, faculty offices, and collaborative work spaces. It is also home to the Media Center, which supports the use of audio and video instructional technologies to enrich the learning experiences of Marist students across all disciplines, as well as The Center for Sports Communication and The Center for Social Media.  


Center for Sports Communication

An image of a group of Sport Communication students working on a project together

Marist’s Center for Sports Communication is a global leader in the study of and practice in sports communication, helping to prepare an enlightened and engaged group of future leaders in one of society’s most far-reaching disciplines.  The Center has achieved national and international recognition for the unique educational experiences it provides to undergraduates. Marist student interns provide industry-standard support for the Center’s work under the guidance of dedicated faculty, allowing students unparalleled opportunities and access.  Some Center successes include creating and hosting a weekly sports show called “The Classroom” on ESPN’s radio network, partnering with both the Marist Poll and HBO’s Real Sports with Bryant Gumbel on sports-related survey research, building a unique speaker series that brings top leaders in the field to campus (including CBS sports broadcaster James Brown and Kevin Merida of ESPN sports blog The Undefeated), and serving as academic partner to the industry-leading Sports PR Summit.  The Center has also presented Lifetime Excellence in Sports Communication awards to HBO’s Bryant Gumbel and ESPN’s Hannah Storm.


Center for Social Media

Communication students seeking to expand their professional toolkit benefit from Marist’s Center for Social Media, which is dedicated to educating students in industry-leading practices in social media listening, engagement, influence, and analytics. At the heart of the Center is its state-of-the-art command center powered by Salesforce’s Social Studio and Command Center platforms. This collaborative workspace features multiple flat-screen TVs displaying real-time social conversations and analytics and giving students access to technology that industry professionals use to turn social insights into strategic action. The Center’s guest speakers have included Kelsey Donohue ’13, former Assistant Press Secretary to First Lady Michelle Obama; Adam Bryant, the Emmy Award-winning Director of Digital Media at AMC Networks; and Mark Schaefer, best-selling social media marketing author and strategy consultant.



Marist students get the practical experience they need to succeed in the exciting worlds of art, fashion, media production, and communication.  Marist in Manhattan combines a semester-long residential stay and a full-time credit-bearing internship with some of the industry’s top companies, complemented by a group of activities, lectures, networking opportunities, and all that New York City has to offer.


Marist students have interned at companies including Hearst Corporation, Harpers Bazaar, Conde Nast, Glamour Magazine, Allure Magazine, Madison Square Garden Company, Sports Advertising and Design, Marvel Entertainment, MTV Networks, ABC News, CBS Sports, Dateline NBC, BCBG, Chanel, Coach, Michael Kors, and more.


Opportunities in Fashion

Marist students at fashion brunch

(RIGHT) Marist students at “The Brunch for Future Fashion Leaders.” Read more >>

Our Fashion Design students develop skills in design, textiles, and more, and in their senior year, they design and execute an apparel collection under the guidance of a professional designer.  Fashion Merchandising majors learn about the planning and marketing aspects of the fashion business. Both groups of students have the opportunity to practice their skills at dynamic events like New York Fashion Week and Marist’s annual Silver Needle Fashion Show.  Through Marist’s partnership with New York Fashion Week, students have worked behind-the-scenes on the production of runway shows by designers including Francesca Liberatore, Betsey Johnson, Nanette Lepore, and Song Jung Wan. The Silver Needle Fashion Show is held every spring to showcase the talents of both Fashion Design and Fashion Merchandising students.  Wholly produced by students and faculty, the two shows attract more than 2,000 attendees. The senior designers’ apparel collections are judged by a panel of industry professionals.

Photo of fashion design studio


Internships at some of the fashion industry’s best-known firms are an integral part of the learning experience.  Fashion graduates have gone on to rewarding careers at Chanel, Ralph Lauren, Coach, Nordstrom, Macy’s, and many other world-class companies.  In addition to studying at Marist’s campus in Florence, students can learn about global fashion trends through unique programs in Paris, Hong Kong, and London.  The Hong Kong program focuses on textiles, product development, production, and sourcing, while students in Paris and London focus on education outside the classroom through internships.


Venice Biennale

Held every other year, the Venice Biennale is the world’s oldest and most prestigious art exposition, and Marist students are right in the middle of it.  Since its foundation in 1895, it has been in the avant-garde, promoting new artistic trends and organizing international events in the contemporary arts in accordance with a multi-disciplinary model which characterizes its unique nature.  

The School’s Biennale program gives students the opportunity to explore the work of global contemporary artists featured at the Biennale sites and museums.  Students are immersed in the unique culture of Venice, Italy and surrounded by the works of artists both past and present. The works explored and discussed help students draw their own inspirations for their final art project.  Two faculty members, as well as rotating visiting faculty, teach this combined studio/art history program and meet with students five days a week for four weeks. After consulting with a faculty advisor, the students work towards creating a body of work that culminates in an exhibition that is an ancillary project of the Biennale.  The concentrations are painting, drawing, sculpture, digital photography, or cross-disciplinary. Participating students typically have a background in art history or studio art.

Music Program

With more than 400 students, Marist’s award-winning Music Department is recognized as one of the best in the nation.  It offers 19 instrumental and vocal ensembles that have become a performance backbone of the College. Students regularly perform at special events on campus, throughout New York State, across the country, and abroad.  Performance venues have included Carnegie Hall and Disney World. Three of the most highly visible and active organizations on campus are the College Band, Singers, and String Orchestra. Courses range from applied voice and instrumental studies to researching the lives and works of renowned composers.  While many students declare a Music minor, it’s not a requirement for participation in performance ensembles or course offerings -- all that’s needed is a love of music!


Research and Accomplishments

Marist has celebrated wondrous amounts of educational research and accomplishments from its School of Communication and the Arts students. To learn more about the highlights of commended academic contributions from our students, visit the Research and Accomplishments page.