Colloquium sends off communication seniors

mother pins daughter

Communication senior Lindsey Gros is pinned by her mother Ramona Gros
after presenting her Senior Thesis Friday. 
The Lion's Roar / Heather Jewell

After a semester of high stress, sleepless nights and hundreds of prints, the Spring 2015 Communication 498 class took their final step toward graduation by presenting their senior theses and receiving their official communication department pins. 

The mandatory course for communication majors must be completed in seniors’ final semester. This semester 23 students had written a thesis and passed their comprehensive exams. The seniors presented their papers at the Communication Senior Colloquium last Friday in D Vickers as their final step toward graduation. 

This semester Lindsey Gros  won for Top Paper. Her studies have focused on public relations and organizational communication. The New Orleans native began thinking about her thesis as early as her freshman year. After graduation, she would like to acquire a job at a public relations firm.

“When I attended the colloquium for the first time as a freshman and saw that there was a best paper award, I thought to myself, ‘I would really love to win that when I get to 498.’ As Dr. Procopio began telling the story about the winner, I put it together that it was me,” said Gros. “When she called my name, I was in shock, and I almost cried. I worked really hard in hopes of getting that award, and when I did, I thought to myself, ‘I really did it!’ Winning that award was the highlight of my senior year.” 

Gros had to change her original topic when she discovered that identical research had already been conducted on the same topic. Senior theses are meant to be original, initial studies based off of previous research on a topic and should strive to contribute to future research on the topic.

“I got the idea for my topic from my law paper on celebrities and privacy, but I wanted my thesis to be about everyday people instead of celebrities,” said Gros. “I was so into the topic that writing the paper just flowed. It wasn’t difficult to get my focus groups together; many students were more than happy to participate.” 

For their research, students were able to issue surveys or conduct interviews. Some students chose to perform a qualitative analysis while others crunched numbers to reveal statistical significance. The thesis is expected to be over 20 pages in length. The final step before graduation was to present the thesis in front of other communication students, professors, friends and families. 

“I’ve imagined that moment since I was a freshman, and when it finally came, it was a bit overwhelming,” said Gros. “After the presentation I was so excited that I had finished it.” 

Following the presentations, the seniors had a family member or faculty mentor present their communication department pin during the pinning ceremony. The seniors will join the Spring Class of 2015 from other departments this Saturday at commencement.

“I will miss the atmosphere of Southeastern and all the friends I have made here,” said Gros. “I love this school, and if I had to do it over, I would come here all over again.