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Your guide to college PR programs in Ontario

By Rebeca Blyde on March 25, 2024

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Durham College's Gordon Willey building in autumn.

If you’ve found your way to this blog, chances are you’re familiar with the world of public relations.

Whether you are already a communications expert looking to expand your knowledge or have public relations as a professional goal and live in Ontario, this article will give you an overview of the PR programs offered by the colleges within the province. 

Most public relations programs in Ontario are designed to equip students with the necessary skills so we can have a rewarding career in the dynamic, fast-paced PR industry. The programs typically cover various topics, including but not limited to media relations, strategic communication planning, electronic media production, and crisis communication.

The focus placed by PR programs at Ontario colleges on experiential learning is one of their main advantages. We frequently get to work on real-world projects, acquiring significant experience and expanding our portfolio. Many programs also provide co-op or internships, allowing us to obtain hands-on experience right before we finish school. Suppose you are lucky enough, like me. In that case, you can also have the opportunity to customize your education to fit your interests and professional objectives by selecting electives in marketing, advertising, and social media in addition to introductory PR courses.

Now, let’s dive into these programs!

Beginning with the more extended programs that can get you an advanced diploma or a degree are:

If you’ve already completed your education in the communications field and want to level up with a public relations graduate certificate, you’re in luck! There’s plenty to choose from, and here’s a list of 10 options to consider:  

  • Cambrian College: Public Relations graduate certificate; it is a full-time program, the learning format is hybrid, and the campus is in Sudbury. 
  • Centennial College: Offers a Public Relations and Corporate Communication graduate certificate program. This program, among the best in Toronto for PR, requires one year to complete. 
  •  Durham College: This is a new Public Relations Graduate Certificate program. The program lasts two semesters, and a third-semester work term is optional. More than 75% of this program is delivered in person at the Oshawa campus. This particular program sets itself apart from others by offering you the chance to master the creation of inclusive and accessible content that complies with accessibility laws. 
  • Fanshawe College: The Public Relations – Corporate Communications graduate certificate program lasts one year on campus in London. During the second term, students are provided with field placement opportunities. 
  •  Humber College: The Public Relations graduate certificate program is three semesters long and delivered in person at the Lakeshore campus. It requires mandatory field placement within the GTA. 
  •  Loyalist College: Public Relations – Event Management is a full-time, one-year graduate certificate. Delivered in person at the Belleville campus. 
  •  Mohawk College: This Public Relations – Corporate Communications graduate certificate is delivered over one year, three days per week. From the program’s beginning, students can expand their networks through various activities. Mohawk College is located in Hamilton. 
  •  Niagara College: Public Relations, 1 year graduate certificate. Delivered in-person in Welland campus.  
  • Seneca Polytechnic: Public Relations – Corporate Communications is a one-year Ontario college graduate certificate program delivered in person or online. This program includes an internship opportunity. 
  • Sheridan College: Public Relations – Corporate Communications, one-year graduate certificate. It is located in Oakville. Onsite job placement during the last five weeks of the program is required. 

And there you have it! A guide to navigating Public Relations programs in Ontario. These programs offered a route to succeed in the PR industry. So, whether you’re a communications pro or just starting the journey, Ontario’s colleges have something for everyone. 

Get ready to pick a program and join our PR world!

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