The School of Communication celebrated Chapman’s 2023 Homecoming by hosting alumni, families, and students for two days of events. With a record turnout, the School of Communication had the opportunity to connect with many current and former Panthers!

Homecoming Alumni Panel

Alumni panelists KC, Allyson, Garrett, and Reagan

Alumni Panel Attendees







To kick off the weekend, the School of Communication hosted an alumni panel with four notable alumni. Moderated by SoC student Amanda Dornslife ’24, panelists Garrett Balliett ‘ 14, KC Nelson ’22, Reagan Poltrock ’21, and Allyson Wadman ’17, discussed their journey navigating their education, internships, jobs, and the use of AI. At the end of the panel, attendees had the opportunity to ask questions to any of the alumni.

About the panelists:

Garrett Balliet

Garett Balliet ’14 – Corporate Communications Manager at Coinbase
Garrett is responsible for leading security and investor communications at Coinbase, bringing a grounded and strategic approach to the team from his extensive background in the corporate communications sector. He kickstarted his career after earning his degree in Strategic and Corporate Communication from Chapman University. Building on a seven-year tenure at Electronic Arts (EA), Garrett cultivated a multifaceted background, eventually steering PR for the company’s Action Adventure Games portfolio. Now at Coinbase, he balances his roles efficiently, contributing significantly to investor relations and reputational management as he continually advocates for the future of the crypto economy.

KC Nelson

KC Nelson ’22 – Campaign Development Specialist at The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society (LLS)

At LLS, KC leads the development and implementation of strategic plans for fundraising campaigns, events, and education programs.

Reagan Poltrock

Reagan Poltrock ’21 – Senior Product Marketing Specialist at Attentive

At Attentive, Reagan helps utilize effective communication, strategic planning, and storytelling to engage with customers and create content that spotlights customer success stories on their media channels.

Allyson Wadman

Allyson Wadman ’17 Public Relations Manager for MGM Resorts International
Allyson is a highly involved alum in the School of Communication. Currently, she serves as a public relations manager, where she manages public relations initiatives for MGM Resorts’ entertainment portfolio, including concerts, residency/production shows, sports events, and nightlife venues.

A Master Class on Persuasion

On Saturday morning, Dr. Tess Buckley led a Masterclass titled Meaningful Persuasion: Evidence-Based Lessons for Persuasive Communication. Her masterclass explored the art of persuasion in both mass and interpersonal contexts. More specifically, she provided an overview of the history of persuasion, in addition to the theoretical and empirical contributions that the field of communication studies has made to the construction of effective persuasive messages. Together, they evaluated various persuasive techniques and discussed how to practically apply persuasion theories in real-world scenarios. Dr. Tess Buckley now teaches at the School of Communication, but she is also a recent graduate of the School of Communication Ph.D. program. Read more about her academic journey here.

The 3rd Annual Homecoming Tailgate







To end the celebration, the School of Communication served popcorn to students, visiting families, and alumni at the Homecoming Tailgate. With the help of staff and student advisory board members, the school was able to serve more than 400 bags of popcorn!