During the month of March, the weather struggled to decide if we had officially left winter behind and entered spring, but the hard work, accolades, and exciting events within the College of Communication, Information, and Media remained consistent.

Read more about some of the most recent work and accomplishments from across our college and be sure to make note of the exciting events coming up in April!


  • Students in Dr. Tong Li’s Emerging Media Design and Development class (EMDD 650) collaborated with Ball State’s Rinard Orchid Greenhouse to come up with innovative design solutions to engage visitors. Learn more about their work in this EMDD blog: https://www.centerforemdd.com/index.php/2024/03/04/growing-by-design-emdd-visits-the-rinard-orchid-greenhouse/
  • Students in Tim Underhill’s MDIA 352 class enjoyed playing “Leap Drone” in recognition of Leap Day. The Aerial Cinematography students are finishing up indoor flight training exercises and now that Spring Break has passed, they are excited to move outside with the drones.
  • On March 24, School of Journalism and Strategic Communication student KwaTashea “Tash” Marfo was revealed as part of the Top 10 of this year’s “Top 100 Student Awards.” In February, the Ball State University Foundation announced the complete list of its 2024 Top 100 Students, 17 of which were from CCIM, and all Top 100 Student Award Recipients will be recognized during One Ball State Day on Wednesday, April 3.
  • Of the 53 entries made to the Indiana Association of School Broadcasters (IASB) awards this year, 26 students were recognized with first, second, or third place for their work at this year’s luncheon on Saturday, March 23. Here are the students and organizations that won awards:
    • First Place Winners
      • Video News Program: The Staff on NewsLink Indiana
      • Sporting Event Broadcast: Charlie Maurer and AJ Swiatek
      • Basketball Play-by-play: Dominick Liacone
      • Football Play-by-play: Dominick Liacone
      • Photojournalism: Alex Almanza
      • Video Sports Package: Josh Brunette
      • Sports Program: Tyler Klimes and Jovanni Alcantar
      • Live Video Sports: Ball State Sports Link Staff
      • Radio Talk Show: The Staff of Cardinal Compass
      • Student Media Website: Ball State Daily staff
      • Video News Package: Alex Almanza
      • Social Media Presence: Ball State Sports Link Staff
    • Second Place Winners
      • TV News Anchor: Alex Almanza
      • Radio News Report: Ransom True and Daniel Huber
      • Video Spot Production: Alex Almanza, Grace Bentowski, Olivia Sloniker, and Hunter Luzadder
      • Video Sports Package: Andy Newman
      • Animated Story: Veronica Newell
      • Video In-Depth: Miles Dearing
      • Video copywriting: Malina Wills
      • Social Media Presence: Staff of WCRD
    • Third Place Winners
      • Radio News Report: Anna Chalker
      • Animated Story: Maddie Rowlett
      • Podcast: Holli Parker, Anna Lower, and Alexis Hall
      • Interview: Staff of Cardinal Compass
      • Non-News/Sports Program: Staff of Cardinal Compass
      • Video News Package: Andy Newman


  • Ball State Public Media has secured a gift of $150,000 in support of necessary equipment and infrastructure improvements. The upgrade made possible with this gift creates the opportunity for Indiana Public Radio to launch a second station which will focus on arts & culture programming. The project will take nine months to complete, and programming changes are scheduled for 2025. The donor wishes to remain anonymous at this time.
  • Ball State Public Media hosted the Ball State Regional Spelling Bee on March 9. Over 40 spellers from regional schools competed, and the winner will go on to the Scripps National Spelling Bee in Washington, D.C.
  • Health is Wealth, presented by Ball State PBS, delves into wellness topics via ballstatepbs.org, YouTube, Facebook, Instagram, TikTok, and broadcasts. It explores fitness, mental health, nutrition, and prevention, empowering viewers with expert insights and real stories for informed choices, fostering healthy culture. In the most recent episode, Paul Brown talks about how small changes really do add up to something bigger. To see all the episodes of this new series, visit BSU PBS’s website.
  • While Ball State Public Media had planned to premiere “Now Entering Hagerstown” on March 14, the premiere was moved as they instead focused on delivering emergency information during the severe storms and dangerous conditions that impacted the region. Check their Facebook page or website to find a re-scheduled date and learn all about Hagerstown.
  • The Center for Information and Communication Sciences hosted the 2024 Women Working in Technology Conference at Infosys in Indianapolis during the weekend of March 23. During the conference, WWiT got to share in the announcement made by Linda Calvin, JD, and Karrah Herring of Governor Holcomb’s Proclamation by the State of Indiana, making September 15 – 22 Women in Tech Week.  
  • Ball State University was named News School of the Year, Sports School of the Year, and Emerging Media School of the Year at the 2024 Indiana Association of School Broadcasters luncheon on March 23.


  • Dr. Tong Li, assistant professor in the School of Journalism and Strategic Communication, has recently published a paper in the International Journal of Educational Technology in Higher Education (ETHE). ETHE is a highly competitive journal with a low acceptance rate (4%) and high impact factor (9.4). The paper is titled “Students’ perceptions of using ChatGPT in a physics class as a virtual tutor” is the result of a collaborative project exploring the use of Generative AI (ChatGPT) as a learning tool in class. Dr. Li said he would be happy to talk with any colleagues interested in using Generative AI for teaching purposes, and his work can be read here.
  • George and Frances Ball Distinguished Professor in the Department of Media Wes Gehring’s 42nd book just came out from the McFarland Press. It is titled “Kinds of American Film Comedy: Six Core Genres and Their Literary Roots.”
  • Ball State PBS participated in the Literacy Fair on the March 14 free Saturday at Muncie Children’s Museum. BSU PBS representatives said they enjoyed sharing their love for reading as well as ways to care for one another with families in the community. They were able to do this through the support of the Ready to Learn grant.
  • On March 22, “Pop of Culture” hosts sat down with Chris Saunders, Founding Artistic Director at American Lives Theatre (ALT) in Indianapolis, and Andrew Kramer, Literary Director at ALT, to discuss why they came to Indiana to start a theater company. They also spoke with James Edwards, Assistant Director of Horticulture at Minnetrista Museum & Gardens, to learn about his job and an upcoming free seed giveaway. Tune in Saturday at noon, or look for Pop of Culture anywhere you get your podcasts.


  • The annual 24-hour fundraising event One Ball State Day will be hosted on Wednesday, April 3. There will be plenty of challenges to take part in — some involving our very own Dean — so be sure to keep an eye out for ways you can spread the word and contribute to the fundraising efforts.
  • The Total Solar Eclipse will take place Monday, April 8, and there are plenty of ways that Ball State and CCIM are getting involved with this historic event:
    • Need some glasses to view the once-in-a-lifetime event? Visit the CCIM Dean’s Office — we are a distribution center and still have lots of glasses.
    • Ball State PBS and Indiana Public Radio are proud to join their colleagues at Orchestra Indiana and Minnetrista Museum & Gardens to bring “Eclipsed: A Magical Evening of Music” as part of our regions’ events surrounding the upcoming solar eclipse. This concert is free and open to the public. Weather permitting, the concert will be held outdoors on the East Lawn at Minnetrista. Bring your lawn chairs and picnic blankets and enjoy celestial-themed musical selections directed by Principal Guest Conductor Joel Smirnoff. If you can’t make it in person, you can tune in to participate live in the fun on Ball State PBS and Indiana Public Radio. The brilliance of Orchestra Indiana and the Beauty of Minnetrista will be shared with PBS stations around the entire state, which will be carrying the concerts as well.
  • Sign up to participate in this year’s commencement ceremony by Tuesday, April 16, at 5 p.m. There are three options to sign up for: faculty marshal, faculty seating for the college ceremony, and faculty seating for the main ceremony in the morning. Please see an email from ccimdeansofc@bsu.edu for a link to the sign-up sheet and contact Kim McClure with any questions.
  • The annual JDAY+/CCIM+ Conference will take place on Friday, April 26. The CCIM Outreach office is excited to welcome more than 1,000 middle and high school students and teachers to its day full of learning, fun, and celebration. Ball State students are invited to attend the sessions scheduled throughout the day, and we are so thankful for the faculty, staff, and students who have already been so instrumental in putting together this year’s conference through providing spaces for sessions, judging contests, and more. Learn more and see our featured and key note speakers on our website.