Rethinking Communications

Denise Heckner

Rethinking Communications

Communications degree was the key to getting ahead for Denise Heckner

| By: Britten, Casey

Working full-time and raising two kids, Denise Heckner needed a program that was flexible and would allow a seamless transition to her ultimate goal: a bachelor’s degree. 

“I was looking for something cost-effective that would help my career, could be done 100% online on my own schedule, and be a path to a bachelor’s degree,” she says. “The FVTC Professional Communications program checked all my boxes.”

A longtime employee of J. J. Keller & Associates, Inc., Denise has held a variety of roles in creative fields, but needed this degree to unlock opportunities for more writing. Her recent advancement to her role as an associate curriculum developer was the result. “People noticed the improvement in my communication skills,” she says. “This degree paved the way for advancement opportunities.” 

In her new role, Denise develops content for safety and regulatory compliance training, which involves taking complex information and breaking it down into easy-to-understand modules for adult learners. “My new job involves a lot more writing and interaction with how people learn,” she says. “It's definitely a lot more challenging, but my brain needed the challenge.”

She has also been able to transfer her FVTC credits to UW-Oshkosh, aligning well with previous credits she had earned there and allowing her to check that final item on her list. 

“It’s a fantastic program,” Denise says. “The variety of material you learn is so valuable.”


What can you do with a Professional Communications degree?

If you love writing, a degree in Professional Communications can open doors to a variety of careers:

  • Documentation Specialist
  • Social Media Manager
  • Technical Writer
  • Training Specialist
  • Web Content Developer

FVTC is the only technical college in Wisconsin offering this fully online program. It’s a versatile degree that combines communication with technology—the result is a wealth of skills that can be applied to just about any industry. Students learn everything from designing and writing content for the web, to grant writing, technical writing, social media and video publishing. Professional Communications alumni earn an average annual salary of $65,912 five years after graduation.

We also offer short-term communications certifcates in Digital Media, Workplace Communication, Writing for the Web and Grant/Proposal Writing. Learn more >