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Welcome to the COMMAlums@Maryland webpage. 

We invite you to join us and reconnect with classmates, meet alumni in your area and network with graduates in your line of work and travel.

Our COMMAlums Advisory Board and I would like to hear from you!  

Let us know your whereabouts and what you are doing by joining us on LinkedIn (group name: University of Maryland Department of Communication) or our Facebook page—COMM@UMD. Or follow us on Twitter—@UMCOMMnews.

We look forward to connecting with you!

Shawn J. Parry-Giles
Chair, Department of Communication

Shawn Parry-Giles

Professor and Chair, Communication

2126 Skinner Building
College Park MD, 20742

(301) 405-6527

COMMAlum Events

The Department of Communication Alumni Board kicked off a successful speed-mentoring event with our undergraduate students. UMD alumni and friends provided professional guidance to an eager and polished group of communication majors. It was a high energy, positive event that moved students forward on their career paths. We are thankful to the time and attention of all participants. Our alumni and friends were energetic and helpful. Our students were prepared and professional. The department is especially thankful to Eric Hall, our University Career Center liaison, for his help in utilizing space in the UCC.

We are thankful to the time and attention of all participants. Our alumni and friends were energetic and helpful. Our students were prepared and professional. The department is especially thankful to Kate Juhl and the University Career Center for their help in making the event a rousing success.

Sorry, no events currently present.

COMMAlum Advisory Board


The mission of the advisory board is to support the research, instructional and public engagement missions of the Department of Communication as it seeks to enhance its top national ranking and reputation for excellence. More specifically, the advisory board will provide advice and counsel at the request of the department in matters relating to communication with alumni. It will also serve as a potential liaison for the department’s current students to the professional world and council students as they enter the workforce. Finally, the board will help generate the human and material resources necessary to attain the goals and objectives of the department.

Strategic Goals

To achieve its mission, the advisory board will:

  • Meet annually to advise the department on alumni communication, the changing nature of the professional world and issues related to student preparation.
  • Help advise students about career opportunities and assist in securing internships and other professional opportunities for undergraduate and applied graduate students.
  • Encourage and identify additional sources of revenue to support the general objectives of the department.
  • Serve as ambassadors on behalf of the department in arenas outside the university.
  • Promote alumni networking and connections between current and former students.


The advisory board is composed of a select group of alumni. Individuals are appointed to serve on the board by invitation only. The department chairperson, in consultation with the faculty advisory committee, selects board members that represent the diversity, breadth of occupational careers and varied accomplishments of communication alumni. Board members typically serve a period of two years, with the possibility of additional terms at the request of the department. The board meets once a year, typically in the Washington, D.C., metro area. In line with the board’s mission of assisting the department in generating resources, members are encouraged to be donors to the communication department.

COMMAlums Advisory Board Members

  • Board President: Steve Drake, Principal, Steve Drake Associates
  • Karen Addis, President & CEO, Addis Communications
  • Shawn Bartley, Shawn D. Bartley and Associates, Law Office
  • Daniel Cronin, Vice President, CFO/COO, Howard Hughes Medical Institute
  • Chris Finnegan, Senior Communications & Marketing Consultant, Freelance
  • Kristin Fleckenstein, Director of Public Affairs, Maryland Department of Planning
  • Emily Freedman, Communications Manager, Capital One
  • Patty McDorman, Event Coordinator/Project Manager, Cornerstone Church
  • Caitlin McKenna, Realtor, The McKenna Group of Long and Foster
  • Michelle Miranda, Associate, Booz Allen Hamilton
  • John Seng, Principal, Grayscale Consulting
  • Jennifer Sherman, Founder, The Influencer Collective
  • Timothy Strachan, Director, Office of Legislative Affairs, FCC
  • Ryan Swann, Chief Data Officer for Public Sector, Collibra
  • Christian Videla, Senior Agent, Redfin