Three students smiling and eating ice cream while looking at something on a mobile phone

College Overview

The Donald P. Bellisario College of Communications at Penn State provides the opportunities and resources of a large university with the personalized feel and support of a small school. As one of the largest accredited programs of its kind in the nation, students can find a place where they can fit and succeed.

Dean Marie Hardin, a woman with shoulder-length blonde hair wearing a blue pant suit, stands in a building lobby with an impressive wooden doorway in the background.

Marie Hardin, Dean of the Donald P. Bellisario College of Communications

Our programs and people provide a powerful combination to support students.

Our four departments — Advertising/Public Relations; Film Production and Media Studies; Journalism; and Telecommunications — offer five undergraduate majors. Graduate students may pursue a master’s degree in media studies or a Ph.D. program in mass communications, with several distinct areas of emphasis.

Faculty members blend strong academic and professional backgrounds and possess a commitment to excellence in teaching, research and service. Along with our research centers and special programs in the Bellisario College, students benefit from on-campus visits from academics and professionals at the top of their fields for endowed lectures and special programs.

In addition, a team of advisers in the Bellisario College provides information and insights for students who have questions ranging from scheduling to selecting a major.

Donald P. Bellisario College of Communications

A transformational gift from alumnus and Hollywood legend Donald P. Bellisario provides the support necessary to make an outstanding communications program even greater.

At a Glance

  • $30 million

    Endowment from alumnus, Donald P. Bellisario and his wife Vivienne, to support communications students and faculty and to establish the state-of-the-art Donald P. Bellisario Media Center.

  • A-List

    Education A-List (PRNEWS, 2022)

  • #1

    Best Average Finish in Big Ten and Northeast, Hearst Journalism Awards Program, 2007-2023 (Three consecutive national championships, 2012-2014.)

  • Top Five

    Outstanding Education Program (PRWeek, 2022 and 2019)

  • #1

    Best Alumni Network (Princeton Review, 2019)

  • “ ”

    “extremely productive and student oriented” faculty who provide “exceptional learning experiences ” for students ACEJMC Accreditation Team (2018)

  • Top Ten

    Top Journalism Schools - #8 (, 2019)

  • 350

    for-credit internships completed each year

  • “ ”

    “this self-proclaimed ‘student-centered’ College lives up to this promise.” (ACEJMC Accreditation Team, 2013)

  • 201

    internship and scholarship funds to support Bellisario College students

  • #21

    entrepreneurial education programs (Princeton Review, 2021)

Statement on Diversity, Equity and Inclusive Excellence

(Updated Fall 2022)

The Donald P. Bellisario College of Communications proudly recognizes that humanity is comprised of a wide array of people with storied experiences, complex backgrounds and unique identities. We believe that equitable access to media and communication technologies and media is essential and indicative of a healthy society and democracy. Everyone has a voice and the right to be heard and acquire accurate and necessary information.

Communication professionals must reflect the diversity and complexity of humanity and constantly seek to understand the complexities of all people, perspectives and beliefs as members of our global society. We are committed to equity and inclusion within our programs and among our faculty, staff and students. We strive for inclusive excellence in media and communication technologies through our teaching, research and service.

To achieve this goal:

  • We will maintain an environment of respect and inclusion for faculty, staff, students and members of the communities we serve;
  • We will foster an environment that supports the expression of diverse points of view.
  • We will provide curricula, programs and environments to students, faculty and staff that reflect the diversity of our communities, promote multicultural awareness and challenge oppression;
  • We will ensure equitable access to our facilities, programs, resources and services, and that our policies and practices reinforce our values;
  • We will design our hiring and promotion practices and review procedures to attract, retain and develop diverse talented faculty and staff; and
  • We will address and remedy disparities in areas such as representation, retention, learning outcomes and graduation rates.

Statement of Community

As members of the Donald P. Bellisario College of Communications, we are dedicated to creating a safe, supportive and welcoming environment for our students, faculty and staff. We acknowledge our responsibility and commitment to the College, to Penn State and to the wider community served by Pennsylvania’s sole land grant institution. Equally, we acknowledge the history and responsibility of our community as one that is located on the homelands of the Erie, Haudenosaunee, Lenape, Shawnee, Susquehannock and Wahzhazhe nations.

A vital part of our community is championing free speech and the rights and responsibilities that accompany it. We have an obligation to listen and to respect the opinions, beliefs and dignity of others. We support open dialogue, proactive transparency and respect for all, even during hard conversations.

Whether we are here to teach, learn, conduct research or support the College’s core activities, we strive to provide a community-based atmosphere of caring, friendship and camaraderie. We pledge to be present and engaged with members of the Bellisario College community. We call for a commitment to honesty, integrity, equity and personal and collective accountability for our behavior.

In a spirit of collegiality, we are committed to the highest quality of academic achievement and to recognizing and celebrating the scholarly, social and personal achievements of our students, our co-workers and our alumni.


The Bellisario College Sustainability Council is committed to creating a culture of sustainability by promoting awareness of sustainability challenges, working collaboratively to discover knowledge to facilitate solutions, and advocating for best practices through teaching, research, operations and community partnerships.