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Northwestern San Francisco

Integrated Marketing Communications students focus on intersection of tech and consumer insight


Some of the most exciting work in the Bay Area is happening at the intersection of technology and marketing. Medill San Francisco puts its Integrated Marketing Communications students in the heart of marketing innovation.

San Francisco is an international hub for design thinking and product development. Medill alumni have built their careers as leaders in media innovation, which allows students to get unparalleled practicum experiences and access to top Medill alumni in technology companies.

IMC students from Medill can experience San Francisco in two ways: summer Immersion Quarter projects with Bay Area companies and a set of fall quarter courses focusing on consumer insight, media innovation and technology.

“Many of the IMC faculty and students are excited about Medill’s expansion to San Francisco,” said Frank Mulhern, associate dean and chair of the IMC department at Medill. “We are planning on having events for students in all IMC graduate programs as well as for local professionals who work in marketing communications, media technology and marketing analytics.”

Medill IMC has deep roots in San Francisco and Silicon Valley. For many years, project teams of full-time IMC students have worked with San Francisco companies on marketing communications and technology projects through summer Immersion Quarter.  This summer IMC students will work on faculty-supervised projects at, Gap, HP, FuelX and Chrisad in the Bay Area.

“For the second year in a row we have about one-fourth of the Immersion Quarter students in the Bay Area,” Mulhern said. “This represents a trend towards the convergence of marketing communications with technology and the key role of data and analytics in brand communications.”

The 13 IMC students who have selected the fall-quarter program will complete three courses in San Francisco.

  • Consumer Insight for Digital Experiences
  • Technology and Innovation for Brand Communications
  • Practicum in Media and Technology – which is cross-listed with journalism and some projects will include a blend of IMC and journalism students

The students will learn from industry leaders who work in digital media, technology, innovation and brand communications. Students will also network with Northwestern alumni in the Bay Area through a series of informal invitation-only events held regularly in the Medill San Francisco space.

IMC students who go to San Francisco will be prepared to succeed in marketing communications roles in a fast-paced and dynamic technology and digital media environment. They'll learn first hand how qualitative and quantitative insights about consumers can be used to develop relevant, meaningful and innovative products and services and how this data can then also be used to create marketing communication strategies that engage consumers.