This is a post I’ve written over a year ago. I noticed that it’s still getting comments from past, current and prospective Orcom students until now, hence the decision to make a separate page out of it.  I encourage you to read through all the comments.  Other Orcom people have contributed valuable insights.  Many, many thanks to them! 🙂  It’s interesting how it has become some sort of a mini-discussion board.  Here goes :


Organizational Communication was my major in college. I’ve been thinking about it this past few days more than ever. I’m working on a Quality Management Systems manual together with our HR/Admin Assistant, who happens to be a fellow UP Manila Orcom grad (years younger than me though). It’s the first time I’ve been in touch with the management side of Orcom since college. I went straight to a magazine then to a graphic design agency, so I never really practiced Orcom. It had very little creative side to it.

I’ve been on the receiving end of many blank looks whenever people ask me what my course is. Let me first give you the textbook definition: Organizational Communication – The process of creating and exchanging messages within a network of interdependent relationships to cope with environmental uncertainty. Whew! Can’t believe I still remember that. Now, let me give you our favorite layman’s definition: It’s a combination of management and communication. And the most uttered disclaimer of all: No, it’s not like MassCom.

Even Orcom majors themselves cannot fully define Orcom in their own terms. It’s just so broad. We always say we’re “jack of all trades, master of none”. To give you a better idea, here are some of our major subjects: Management Theories, Organizational Theory, Management Communication (taught by Emily Abrera and Maricel Arenas, CEO and VP of McCann-Erickson), Public Relations, 12 units of Speech Communication, Intercultural Communication, Communication Theories, Linguistics. I can’t remember the rest. My favorite was PR. Even the teacher was my favorite. The least helpful was probably Linguistics (cute Prof though, ;-)). I’m going out of topic for a while here. Let me just demonstrate how poorly equipped UP is when it comes to facilities. We had an Audio Visual Communication subject and the only AV equipment we had were a slide projector and a transparency projector – old models at that.

As proof of how broad Orcom really is, look at where we are now. In my batch, I’m the only one who’s a full-time writer (as of last check). Some went to banks, a couple to law school, one in an ad agency, one is a teacher, one in PR, at least two in Corporate Comm, one in cosmetics, one in HR/Admin. I don’t know where the others are. My officemate and I were discussing how confused an Orcom grad can get once he/she graduates. He asked me how life after Orcom is and I told him it’s kind of weird. I wasn’t able to use much of what I learned in our major subjects. It was too late when I discovered how much I really love to write. I should have taken Creative Writing.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m not discouraging those who want to take Organizational Communication. It may be good for you if you have varied interests and expertise. And never make the mistake of thinking it’s like MassCom. Think corporate communication instead. And go to UP Manila, not La Salle (the only other school offering the course). Heehee. D


Comments from the original post:

  1. hi! i’m an orcom graduate (UP Manila, of course) batch 2001 and i just came across your blog. I was surprised you blogged about the course. Much has changed now (except the AV equipment; but we do have a wide flat TV screen now and a couple of LCD projectors hahaha). By the way, DAC is creating an orcom alumni directory; would you and your batchmates want to be listed? do email me Thanks!Comment by barry — March 24, 2007 @ 11:57 pm |
  2. Hi Barry. It’s good to know that Orcom is developing. We can’t do anything much about the equipment though, unless the alumni make big donations (calling on all Orcom grads ;-) ). I’ll inform my batchmates about the directory. Please also let me know through this blog when the directory is finished. Thanks! -)Comment by gypsypen — March 25, 2007 @ 11:39 am |
  3. hi there. orcom grad here too. graduated a year ahead of barry. hehe. anyway, just dropping by to say hi.Comment by Angelo — January 4, 2008 @ 8:35 am |
  4. Hi Angelo. Thanks for dropping by. )Comment by gypsypen — January 4, 2008 @ 11:43 am |
  5. janine..a devcom freshie of UPLB…i was kind of thinking about transferring to UPM and try orgcom coz i really am’s not about my course or the way uplb system runs standards..but im really sad in know the kind of away-from-home syndrome…hufff…i plan to shift so that i could stay at my aunt’s house in manila instead of staying at a dorm.well,but im not sure what orgcom offers..what would be the job most probably associated with orgcom?and will it be a right decision if i shift to UPM from LB?hope comeone could help be very happy even with just a bit of advice..thnkz!Comment by janine — January 15, 2008 @ 2:28 pm |
  6. Hi, Janine. Orcom can equip you for a career in corporate communication, business or human resource management, organizational development, marketing and public relations. It gives you an overview of everything, and it will depend on your strengths when it comes to choosing which way you’ll go. For example, if you’re a good writer or a good speaker, or both, you can do corporate comm, marketing and PR. If you have good organizational and analytical skills, then you could go for a career in management. The bulk of the major subjects revolve around management theories, communication theories and research, and speech communication. There are also a couple of subjects on technical or business writing.I hope I was able to help you. ) As for shifting to UPM from UPLB being the right decision…well, it’s only yourself who can know that. If you think you’ll like Orcom, then by all means move to UPM, especially if the change of location will make you really happy. You could also try exploring other UPM courses that you might like: by gypsypen — January 15, 2008 @ 3:34 pm |
  7. gypsen..thanks a lot for that response…I am really glad to have an overview about orcom(sorry i thought it was orgcom)..o well.. most of the devcom pipz are planning to shift to other UP systems so I think I’m kind of carried away…I want to try more in my college life…thanks for dropping by…you’re a great help…hope I could still drop by some other time in this site…xao!!Comment by Janine — January 26, 2008 @ 11:29 pm |
  8. Glad to be of help, Janine )Comment by gypsypen — January 28, 2008 @ 2:56 pm |
  9. hi! i was looking for something about orcom in google when i stumbled upon your blog. i’m an incoming freshman student in UP Manila. like you, i’m taking up orcom.when people ask me what my course is, i get a lot of huh’s and what’s. and i find it hard to explain because really, i don’t know what exactly orcom is all about. it’s a good thing i read your entry. now i know more or less what to expect in my college life.thanks! )btw, i’m planning to use orcom as my pre-law. )

    Comment by mara — April 8, 2008 @ 1:18 pm |

  10. You’re welcome, mara. ) Hope you’ll learn a lot and have a great stay at UP Manila.Comment by gypsypen — April 8, 2008 @ 2:22 pm |
  11. Cool. Organizational Communication is the process of creating and exchanging messages within a network of interdependent relationships to cope with environmental uncertainties (Goldhaber, 1990). This is the only answer I give whenever I am asked with the million dollar question: ORCOM?! ANO YUN!I’m a fresh OrCOm grad, with high hopes and idealism! )
    I agree with the confusion most OrCom people have after graduating from the course. The degree program itself is so broad you can enter just about any industry you want! I guess???

    I have a batchmate who is a shiftee from LB-DevCom, I don’t think she regrets making that decision. If you want to shift to orcom, do it as early as now; they are strict when it comes to giving away slots. In our batch, I think we barely have 5 shiftees out of the MILLIONS who have auditioned! OK! that was a bit exaggerated!

    All my batchmates who took the UP-LAE passed, now, they are about to enter UP Law School. If you plan to have OrCom as your pre-law course, that would be perfect! OK! Too much advertising!

    Sorry! Can’t help but respond to the previous replies.

    Hi Sir Barry!
    Barry up there is now a professor in UP Manila he is my Technical Writing professor. Hope he is not proofreading my reply to this post! He is also my PR prof! I think that is the path I want to take! Hopefully!!! (Ok! This is not his blog site! STOP!)

    @Gypsypen (Again)
    How are your fellow orcom grads? Are there any bums? I always heard that no OrCom product stays jobless, and we earn more that -toooooot- grads. D

    Comment by OrcomDinAko — April 20, 2008 @ 11:28 pm |

  12. @OrcomDinAko: Wow, long comment. Thanks for the effort of replying to almost every other person who commented here. ) That Goldhaber citation made me smile. I had already forgotten about him, but your comment reminded me of who he is to us Orcom people. To answer your question, there are currently no bums that i know of, but I think most of us definitely had a ‘bumming around’ phase, hehe! About earning more, uhm, no comment. Haha! ;)
  13. hanna Says:
    June 24, 2008 at 1:08 pm ehi dear! i’m a junior orcom student, shiftee from a different course. almost not a surprise to find sir barry here, he’s currently my oc142 teacher. anyways, i still find it hard to understand and define the carreers an orcom grad could have. it is as you say- connected yet diverse. but i guess that’s what’s good about being an orcom person. there are actually no limits. and since there are still not so many orcom grads compared to other comm courses, the prvilege to put the first orcom footprints in society is actually ours. we may had a hard time drawing the image to orcom outsiders but until we make the mark, maybe they’ll begin to see for themselves the course come to life.

    okay, that sounded too mushy.