Scientia 2005: Christina L. Reidy

Christina L. Reidy is receiving a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Public Relations and Advertising. She is a Marywood Presidential Scholar and a member of Marywood’s chapters of Delta Epsilon Sigma, the National Honor Society for Catholic Colleges and Universities, and Lambda Pi Eta, the National Honorary Society for Undergraduates in Communication. She decided to pursue a Citation in Honors in order to challenge herself academically and enhance her learning opportunities at Marywood. Ultimately, Christina would like to pursue a career in corporate event planning, but after graduation, she hopes to attain a public relations or marketing position in an agency or organizational setting. Outside of the classroom, Christina is the Honors of Office and Fellowships intern, the assistant editor of Marywood’s campus newspaper, The Wood Word, and an active member of Volunteers in Action. She would like to thank her advisor, Dr. Michael Mirabito, for his guidance and for stepping in when she needed it; her reader, Sr. Maria Rose Kelly, for always being a wonderful source encouragement; Christina Elvidge for her constant help and support; her parents for their never-ending love and assurance; and her fiancé, James, for always inspiring her to be the best that she can be. Finally, she dedicates her thesis to Jay Hammeran, in loving memory.

Masquerading and Misrepresentation—A Clash of Ethics and Communication

Director: Dr. Michael Mirabito
Reader: Sr. Maria Rose Kelly


Honesty is an essential component of effective communication. To see why this is true, one must examine the principles of honesty and the characteristics of communication jointly. Honesty is a virtue that represents integrity—a hallmark of good character that facilitates trust and demonstrates accountability. Communication is an exchange of information in any form between parties, and to make this exchange dependable and worthwhile, the information being shared should be accurate and reliable. Thus communicators should be accountable to their audiences in sharing correct and trustworthy information; they should prize honesty as an ideal standard of practice.

A communicator’s audience relies on him or her to deliver important information on a range of topics. Audiences use communicators as sources of knowledge, facts, and new information. Because people rely on them so much, communicators, particularly professional communicators, have a duty to convey and report accurate and honest information to their audiences. This is especially true for communicators who deal with the general public. When the public receives information from a professional communicator (i.e., a news professional or an organizational spokesperson), they trust that the information is truthful and upright because it comes from a seemingly dependable source.

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