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Communication & Media

News & Events

New Communication Professor Truly Enjoys Researching

12/03/2007

Jason Wrench, the newest Communication and Media professor at SUNY New Paltz, says he always wanted to be a teacher. He was born in San Jose, California and raised mostly in Lubbock, Texas.

There was a lot of traveling in Professor Wrench’s youth because his parents were in the Navy. But now that he has landed in the Northeast, he says he is glad to be in the Hudson Valley of New York teaching organizational communication.

Professor Wrench has a long history in successfully guiding his students with their undergraduate research projects. Last year, for example, at the Eastern Communication Association conference in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, his students were awarded the top honor in organizational communication and first place in the competitive undergraduate poster competition. “I’m very proud of my ability to shepherd original undergraduate research,” said Professor Wrench.

This year at the Eastern Communication Association in Providence, Rhode Island, his students received an award for competitive undergraduate posters. He also had undergraduate initiated research take top awards in organizational communication.

During his first semester at SUNY New Paltz in the fall of 2007, Professor Wrench taught Introduction to Organizational Communication, an Organizational Communication Seminar, and a class in Communication Research Methods.

The discipline of Organizational Communication provides an overview of communication processes in large-scale, hierarchical organizations. In the class that introduces this, there is emphasis on interviewing, committee decision-making, and developing business/professional presentations.

Professor Wrench co-authored the Instructor’s manual for organizational communication in 2005. He is currently working on two books, Quantitative Research methods for communication which is due out by the end of December and Human communication in everyday life: Explanations and applications.

The Organizational Communication Seminar is a synthesis of research regarding the role of communication in large, complex organizations. The class studies and applies research methods for analyzing organizational variables that affect communication behavior.

In Communication Research Methods, students survey the diverse methods of inquiry that are most commonly used by researchers in communication studies including the Internet.

Professor Wrench has a passion for researching. “I love asking questions and finding out answers,” he says. “I may also be attracted to research because I'm nosy.” He adds, “There's nothing quite like winning an award for good research or like seeing your work finally in print.”

In the spring of 2008, Professor Wrench is teaching a new class called Instructional Training and Development. “Corporate training and development is an ever expanding industry,” explains Professor Wrench. “As communication researchers we are ideally positioned to train people in the workforce on a number of critical factors.”

“I see Instructional Training and Development as a very applied course useful for a range of people.” Students will have to engage in both in-class training situations and in the training process with a real client and will also have to create a mediated training program.

Professor Wrench got his BS from Texas Tech University in 1997, his MS from Texas Tech University in 1999, and his Doctorate in Education from West Virginia University in 2002.