Romero, the media savvy dean

SIUE’s College of Arts and Sciences can boast that at its helm is a dean who hosts a radio talk show, “Segue,” and now writes a newspaper column, “College Talk” – both designed to highlight the backgrounds, research and courses of CAS faculty members.

His weekly column in “The Edwardsville Intelligencer” is the newest media venture of Aldemaro Romero, Jr., dean of the College of Arts and Sciences. The dean’s column, “College Talk” will appear in the local newspaper on Fridays.

Aldemaro Romero Jr., dean of the College of Arts and Sciences.

“The name of the column is “College Talk” – “college” because it is the College of Arts and Sciences but also because “college” has a very generic meaning to the general public and “talk” because these articles will be based on the interviews that have been broadcast in “Segue” the Sunday before,” explained Romero.

“Segue” airs on Sunday mornings at 9:00 a.m. on 88.7 FM, WSIE – SIUE’s radio station. The show lasts 30 minutes and is comprised of full interviews with CAS faculty members. Each week, the dean engages in an entertaining and educational chat with a faculty member about their research, background stories, courses that they are teaching or have taught and other similar subject matter.

“You have an actual broadcast [of “Segue”] on Sunday, and, on Friday you have a summary of the topics that were mentioned in that interview with specific quotes coming out of those interviews,” said Romero. “The idea is to celebrate what our faculty do.”

According to Romero, his persistence in celebrating the work of CAS faculty and students is essential for several important reasons.

“I think we have to redouble our efforts to communicate both internally and externally. What we do in academia has come under criticism by a number of people and I don’t believe it is ill-intentioned. I believe it is based on the lack of knowledge about what we do and how we do it,” said Romero. “That is the result of academia being kind of isolated from society – there was this sense that we do something special and that we don’t have to explain it to anybody but things have changed.”

The changes, according to Romero, demand that the College engages in higher levels of communication designed to give insight into the academic conquests of its faculty. The benefits of internal and external communication, explained the dean, are numerous.

“You’re dealing with public perception and funding – both state and private funding,” said Romero. “You need to be much better at explaining what you do and how you do it. So, that’s why I have led a number of initiatives aimed at communicating better internally which is the case of This Week in CAS and also externally which is the case of “Segue” and now this column in “The Edwardsville Intelligencer.””

Each week’s “College Talk” column will be available in the print version of “The Edwardsville Intelligencer” and on the newspaper’s Web site. Each broadcast of “Segue” will also be made available on SIUE’s Web site.

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