Meet Julia McDonald — Publishing Minor

November 12, 2019

This interview is part of our "3 Questions" series with Publishing Minor students, Master of Publishing candidates, and MPub alumni.

Julia McDonald
Major: Communications
Minor: Print and Digital Publishing
Year: 3.5

What course would you recommend to anyone wanting to take their first SFU publishing class and why?

JM: Truthfully, I have yet to take a PUB course that I wouldn’t recommend to my peers. PUB 131 is a good idea to gain a fundamental knowledge of Adobe software, such as InDesign and Photoshop. This class requires you to physically go to a professional printer to have your original designs turned into a tangible thing. PUB 355W or PUB 212 are both amazing, hands-on courses that enable students to take course theory and apply it to real-life advertising and public engagement campaigns.

What is the most valuable skill you have acquired through the SFU publishing program?

JM: In every PUB course, you’re truly learning by doing. This type of learning is amazing because you’re constantly gaining valuable, applicable skills. Besides my very basic understanding of Photoshop from high school, all of my design software experience has come from the SFU Publishing program. (And these skills look great on a resume!)

What advice would you give to someone considering a minor in publishing?

JM: First of all – do it. Declaring a minor is generally a good way to differentiate yourself from your major program. I’ve always enjoyed writing, which is why I initially enrolled in the Communication program, and upon taking a few PUB courses I knew I wanted to pursue the minor. I found that the Publishing coursework very much aligned with Communication course content and I was able to cross reference skills from both programs. Overall, there is something very fulfilling about learning skills that you know will be useful beyond your undergrad, in future career endeavours.

Visit to learn more about the Undergraduate Minor in Publishing at SFU and how to declare your minor in Print and Digital Publishing.