The Future for Public Relations and Tourism Professionals is Promising

3 Mar, 2022

Revised on 30 August 2023

With a contribution from  Nisthula Nagarajan

As we fast approach a new academic year, students are faced with the challenge of choosing the perfect educational path as they enter a new session. Globally, the United Arab Emirates (UAE) is considered as one of the ideal study destinations for the finest reasons — infrastructure, its metropolitan vibe and safety.

One of the universities that call the UAE its home and the country’s pride is Zayed University. Founded in 1998, it is a nationally and regionally recognized leader in educational excellence and innovation, proudly bearing the name of the founder of the nation — the late Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan, whose leadership legacies continue to guide and inspire the nation.


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The UAE’s economic growth is forecast to recover fully from the impact of the global Covid-19 pandemic. Considering the outbreak, organizational communication is more important than ever. It is an essential tool to achieve productivity and maintain strong working relationships. It has become particularly important given the pandemic has introduced the work-from-home model to employers and employees alike.  Every sector needs effective communicators to support its mission internally and externally.

While many sectors have been affected as a result of Covid-19, media, tourism and hospitality were sectors that took the hardest hit. Now, these sectors are bouncing back with force. The public relations (PR) sphere is exploding with action as brands push for their strategic communication to go digital. According to Asda'a BCW, a Dubai-based PR agency, it is estimated that by 2030, the PR industry will be worth $2 billion driven by the growth of global brands that emerge from this region. Jobs within the media and communications industry are set to grow by four per cent by 2028, resulting in around 27,600 new jobs, says research by Edarabia, a top education guide in the Middle East. Communication in the tourism industry is expected to grow rapidly. Known for its hospitable culture, the Gulf region, and the UAE, in particular, is experiencing strong growth in the tourism industry.

The UAE has grown rapidly into a global leader in innovation, culture, and business, but strategic communication allows the nation to connect with its diverse population, businesses, and stakeholders around the world, share its success and navigate challenges, as it continues to enhance its global presence. Also, recognizing the importance of effective messaging, reputation management, and stakeholder engagement, organizations across the UAE have increasingly embraced strategic communication as a core element of their operations. Additionally, the UAE's commitment to innovation is reflected in the widespread adoption of new technologies and digital platforms that have a significant impact on strategic communication. In recent years, strategic communication has grown exponentially, leading to an increase in professionals, agencies, and educational programs dedicated to honing the skills that can be used for effective engagement.

With such anticipated growth, these industries now demand highly skilled communication leaders prepared for the changing world of strategic communication.


What are the Benefits of Earning a Master of Arts in Communication?


Several benefits come from earning a Master of Arts in Communication. These include:

  • Gaining specialized expertise by choosing from various concentrations or study options.

  • Learning valuable skills and knowledge, i.e., cross-cultural communication, professional communication, writing and speaking to different audiences, strategic messaging, storytelling with data, research, etc.

  • Keeping pace with the latest strategies, best practices, trends, and social and digital technologies in the field.

  • Being employment-ready in private, government, and non-profit sectors.

  • Availability of higher-level entry positions and leadership roles in a growing industry.


Graduate Program Study Options

Moving with the current trends, the College of Communication and Media Sciences, Zayed University offers a globally recognized Master of Arts in Communication with study options in strategic public relations and tourism and cultural communication.


Master of Arts in Communication

Zayed University's Master of Arts in Communication program equips students with the tools to drive communication strategies in the private and public sector through research and planning to achieve organizational goals. Students learn how to communicate effectively, think critically, and solve problems effectively. This program emphasizes cultural sensitivity and understanding, which are closely aligned with the diverse and multicultural environment of the UAE. While navigating the nuances of communication in a globalized environment, the students learn about the local culture and values. In addition, students develop research skills that are valuable in both academia and industry, which will allow them to make more informed decisions.

Faculty in the College of Communication and Media Sciences are known for their highly regarded research and exceptional expertise in their respective fields. They are also recognized for their outstanding contributions to academia and their commitment to excellence in teaching. 


Study Option in Strategic Public Relations 

The study option in Strategic Public Relations positions students as sought-after professionals capable of shaping narratives, building reputation, and driving successful communication strategies in today’s dynamic business landscape.

Graduates of this program can excel in sectors such as corporate, government and public affairs, non-profit, healthcare, technology and startups, entertainment and media, financial services, travel and hospitality, education, energy, and sustainability. Some of the key job roles include the following:

  • Public Relations Specialist/Manager
  • Media Relations Manager
  • Communication Director
  • Crisis Communication Specialist
  • Corporate Communications Manager/Director
  • Government / Investor Relations Specialist
  • Non-Profit Communications Director
  • Social Media Manager
  • Content Strategist
  • Internal Communication Specialist
  • Events / Healthcare / Entertainment Public Relations Manager 

Study Option in Tourism and Cultural Communication

The study option in Tourism and Cultural Communication is designed to provide students with extensive knowledge and understanding of the tourism sector and applies strategic decision-making in a global context. Overall, students acquire key skills and competencies in effective planning and the management of both tourism activities and culture-related aspects of communication.

Some of the key sectors for career opportunities include tourism boards and organizations, cultural institutions, event management, destinations management companies, hospitality industry, academic and research institutions, government and non-profit agencies/organizations, consulting firms, travel media and content creation, cultural exchange programs, arts and entertainment industry, sustainable tourism initiatives, public relations and communication agencies, entrepreneurship.

The below job roles showcase the diverse and meaningful career opportunities that are available upon completion of the master’s degree: 

  • Cultural Event Coordinator
  • Cultural Communication Specialist
  • Cultural Heritage Manager
  • Destinations Marketing Manager
  • Museum Curator
  • Cultural Liaison Officer
  • Cultural Policy Advocate
  • Tourism Researcher/Analyst
  • Tourism Educator/Guide
  • Arts and Culture Public Relations Specialist
  • Sustainable Tourism Coordinator


Graduate Program Structure

If you are looking to expand your expertise or thinking of a career change, the Master of Arts in Communication will help open doors and create opportunities, giving you a competitive edge. Benefit from the blend of coursework and research-committed teaching by faculty renowned for their research portfolios and extensive industry experience, a supportive learning environment, and state-of-the-art facilities and resources on the modern campuses located in Abu Dhabi and Dubai.

The three-semester/36-credit program is offered in English. Seven core courses provide the foundation for discipline knowledge. Starting in the second semester, five courses that include an applied research seminar and capstone research project deliver advanced topics tailored towards theory development and industry application in one of the two options — Strategic Public Relations or Tourism and Cultural Communication.


Invest in Yourself and Achieve Your Full Potential

The graduate program is ideal for job seekers with bachelor's degrees who want to enter the workforce after graduation. It is also designed for professionals who want to make a career change, use the degree for career advancement, enhance skills in their current positions or pursue a doctoral degree.

Admission is open to students from all nationalities. Applicants must have earned a four-year baccalaureate degree with a CGPA of 3.0 or higher from an accredited university and demonstrate sufficient English proficiency to manage a challenging, fast-paced program. While a bachelor’s degree in communication would be beneficial, this is not essential to gain entry to the Master of Arts in Communication program. Zayed University is committed to helping graduate students afford their education by providing financial support, including academic merit and alumni scholarships, and corporate discounts. 


Contact the College of Communication and Media Sciences, Zayed University at +971-2-599-3605 /

Get to Know the Zayed Difference

Studying for a graduate degree is an important step in your career. We also know choosing the right university for your graduate studies is a big decision. Our internationally credentialed faculty, dedicated graduate student recruitment and admissions team and community of graduate students and alumni are here to guide you in your decision-making and provide as much information and assistance as you may need with the admissions process.

If you have any questions, please contact the Deanship of Graduate Studies at / +971-2-599-3605

Apply Now