In the News
Marist's Student-Run PR Firm Helps Beacon Independent Film Festival
Beacon Independent Film Festival completed its 2nd annual film festival over the weekend of September 12th through the 14th. The local film festival provides a platform for local filmmakers to showcase their shorts, documentaries, features, and previews for upcoming full-length films. The film festival was located in an intimate camp ground beneath Mount Beacon. With an emphasis on being family friendly as a community minded event, Beacon IFF encourages families to attend by having something for everyone to partake in during the festival, like the kid’s tent, local vendors and vibrant/ energetic panel discussions with fellow film enthusiasts.
The weekend exceeded expectations in terms of press coverage and attendees, which can in part be credited to Marist’s student-run public relations firm, North Road Communications. Under the supervision of Faculty Advisor Dr. Nadine Hoffmann, NRC members, who were on the Beacon Independent Film Festival account team, worked diligently over the summer to raise awareness of the film festival to the surrounding communities. The account team, led by Katelyn Pecorelli, wrote press releases and secured placements for the event in local publications, researched and assisted in the selection of potential film to be shown at the film festival, aided in the logistical aspect of the festival, and, overall, was instrumental in helping with the event. Katelyn described her experience with working on the Beacon Independent Film Festival account by stating that, “…helping Beacon Independent Film Festival set up before the film festival was such as great experience and to finally see it all come together after all of the hard work made it all worthwhile.” During the weekend of the festival, all members of North Road Communications volunteered their time to assist with the set-up and tear-down of the tents, merchandise table, ticket sales, and ushering. Additionally, NRC members participated in keeping the Beacon IFF’s social media handles active by live-tweeting throughout the weekend and posting to Instagram with the hashtag #beaconIFF.
This event showcases the success rate of North Road Communications as a student-run public relations firm. Clients like Beacon Independent Film Festival have expressed positive feedback that reflects the professionalism and hard work of the members of NRC.
Marist PRSSA Hosts PR Legend Al Golin for National Ethics Month
The Marist College Chapter of the Public Relations Student Society of America (PRSSA) hosted industry legend Al Golin on September 17 for an interactive Q&A session titled, “Trust and Relationship-Building,” in support of PRSA/PRSSA National Ethics Month.
Al Golin is founder and chairman of Golin, a leading large-sized public relations agency with more than 35 offices around the world. He is credited with coining the term "Trust Bank" as well as authored the book, "Trust or Consequences." He has been recognized with numerous industry awards during his more than 55-year career including the Public Relations Society of America Gold Anvil, the Arthur W. Page Society Hall of Fame Award and the Alexander Hamilton Medal from the Institute for Public Relations. He also was named one of the "100 most influential public relations people of the 20th century" by industry trade magazine PR Week.
The hour-long Skype session moderated by PRSSA Faculty Adviser Jennie Donohue covered topics including Golin’s revolutionary “Trust Bank” concept, the importance of transparency and business ethics, as well as the need to build interpersonal relationships in today’s high-tech, low-touch culture. Golin left students with a reminder to “be curious, knowledgeable, stay current and be well-rounded.” He also highlighted that embracing change is necessary and doing the unexpected—in a strategic way—is a good thing.
Approximately 50 students from the Marist College School of Communication and the Arts attended the event, which was live tweeted using the hashtags #MCOM347 and #MaristPRSSA. More than half of the students in attendance were active PRSSA members. The Marist College PRSSA Chapter also used this event as a recruiting opportunity to gain new members for the 2014-2015 academic year.
PR Students to Partner with Mount Gulian This Fall
Public relations students in professor Jennie Donohue’s Communication Campaign Management class are gaining hands-on professional experience working with local community partner, Mount Gulian Historic Site, as part of their coursework this fall. In particular, 30 students in the upper-level communication class will be spending the semester researching, developing and presenting comprehensive public relations plans that create awareness of and drive engagement for this local non-profit organization which is serving as the students’ client for the fall semester.
“Experiential learning, particularly when it involves a civic engagement or service learning component, can be a powerful tool in helping students learn about strategic communication planning and community engagement,” said Jennie Donohue, professional lecturer of public relations. “It gives students the opportunity to work with a real client, such as Mount Gulian Historic Site, who in turn also benefits by gaining fresh insights and ideas for communicating with multiple stakeholder groups.”
Marist PRSSA To Host Skype Session with PR Legend Al Golin on September 17
The Marist College chapter of the Public Relations Student Society of America (PRSSA) is hosting a discussion with public relations legend, Al Golin, founder and chairman of Chicago-based public relations agency, Golin, via Skype on Wednesday, September 17, at 11:30 a.m. ET. Al will be conducting a Q&A session with the students on "Trust and Relationship-Building" in honor of PRSSA Ethics Month. The event will be live tweeted at #MCOM347. Interested parties also can follow the conversation via Twitter at #MaristPRSSA.
The Public Relations Society of America (PRSA) honored Al with its highest individual honor, the prestigious Gold Anvil Award. In addition, he is a recipient of the Alexander Hamilton Medal from the Institute of Public Relations as well as Lifetime Achievement Awards from PRSA, the Publicity Club of Chicago and Inside PR magazine. He also was named one of the 100 most influential public relations people of the 20th century by industry trade magazine, PR Week, and is a recipient of the Arthur W. Page Society Hall of Fame Award for "career achievements and outstanding contributions to the profession."
Media Relations Experts Visit Marist M.A. in Communication Graduate Students
The School of Communication and the Arts hosted a special M.A. in Communication speaker series event on the evening of May 7, 2014. The event, organized by graduate students in Professor Mark Van Dyke’s COMG 503 Media Relations course, took place through a telephone conference call. During the call public relations executive Mr. Justin Meise, Hopewell Junction, N.Y., and veteran journalist and book author Mr. Ed Offley, Panama City Beach, Fla., joined COMG 503 students in an hour-long discussion of media relations ethics, principles, and practices.
Use the following link to download and listen to one-hour podcast of the entire event: http://youtu.be/Xfx2VYsz_p8. This recording contains valuable knowledge, keys to success, and important principles of communication from the unique perspectives of a seasoned public relations practitioners and a veteran journalist. Contradictory to anecdotal stories about conflicts between spokespersons and journalists, Mr. Offley and Mr. Meise described two professions that were remarkably similar in terms of missions, measures of success, and principles.
Mr. Offley reported for the Norfolk Ledger-Star (sister paper to the Virginian-Pilot), the Seattle Post-Intelligencer, and the News Herald; and he served as editor-in-chief of the online news magazine, DefenseWatch. He is also co-founder and director of the Military Reporters and Editors Association. He is currently employed full time as an accomplished book author, with several titles under his name: Pen and Sword, Scorpion Down, Turning the Tide, and Lifting the Fog of War. His most recent book, The Burning Shore, was just released in March and has already received positive reviews.
Mr. Meise is principal partner with River Communications Inc., a public relations and marketing firm for clients in the financial sector, based in White Plains, N.Y. He has provided strategic communications counsel to a diverse range of financial organizations like Citi, Merrill Lynch, Prudential Securities, iShares, and BNY Mellon’s Pershing division. Justin is also a seasoned crisis communications manager and media trainer. He is a Marist College alumnus, a member of Public Relations Society of America and its Counselors Academy, and a licensed private pilot.
Mr. Offley urged participants in the conference call to follow norms of “human life,” or universal principles that unite rather than divide communication professions. He attributed success as “a military reporter dealing with an institution that by in large was suspicious of people like me” to remaining committed to “give and take, honesty, showing empathy for the other side of the story, even though the other side of the story was in a bad way.” Also, he “found that human connections were a lot more important than degrees or credentials [and] showing up was everything.”
In his closing remarks, Mr. Offley recommended, “Do what you love, know what … you are doing, study every day, study your client, study his products, study this chaos out there that we call social media…. and the big thing is this, that we are interacting, we’re trying to provide information, context … hopefully a winning argument; and you do it by knowing your subject and delivering whatever you deliver as honestly as you can.”
Mr. Meise offered similar advice. When relating with employers, clients, or journalists, let them “know that there is a real person there, that you are committed to whatever it is you are doing, and that you are passionate … that you care.” He also urged conference participants to “be easy to work with, be supportive of the people around you, find reasons to be enthusiastic about them, and give them reasons to be enthusiastic about you.”
In his closing remarks, Mr. Meise stressed the importance of being a voracious reader, approaching your field with an attitude that you will learn as much as you can, become an accomplished writer, and establish yourself as one of the leading experts and critical thinkers in your field.
Marist Enters the World of 4K Production
The School of Communication and the Arts recently took delivery of two 4K video cameras. 4K is the latest trend in the production industry, the next step beyond high-definition. The name refers to the number of vertical pixels in the video image, nearly four times the resolution of high-definition. 4K cameras, equipment, and distribution have dominated the National Association of Broadcasters convention for the past two years.
On April 23, Marist students attended a workshop in which production teacher Jeff Bass demonstrated these new cameras and the 4K post-production workflow. Also known as “ultra-high definition,” 4K equipment and techniques will be integrated into the production curriculum next year.
Student-run PR agency hosts clients
North Road communications recently held a client lunch, hosting both current account executives and clients of accounts. Some clients who attended were Brian Doyle, CEO of Family Services Inc, Professor Arien Rozelle and Kelly Ellenwood of BeaconArts Association, Terry Nelson of Beacon Independent Film Festival, and Professor Kevin Lerner of Joint Journalism and Communication History Conference. During the catered lunch, clients were able to talk about their experiences with North Road Communication and several clients highlighted some of their favorite projects tackled by the firm. North Road Advisor Dr. Nadine Hoffmann and past Advisor Jennie Donohue were also in attendance at the lunch to support the firm, as well as get a chance to hear about North Roads' progress within this semester alone. After lunch, client contacts got to sit down one-on-one with their account executives to map out the semester ahead with assignments. The event proved to be a great success and due to positive feedback, North Road is strongly considering making it a semester occurrence.
PR Faculty Members Receive Teaching Awards
Two of the school's public relations faculty members have recently been acknowledged for their work with students across campus. Visiting Professional Lecturer LoriBeth Greenan received the Marist College Student Government Association 2013-2014 School of Communication and the Arts Faculty Member of the Year award. In addition, Professional Lecturer Jennie Donohue was the recipient of the Excellence in Teaching Award from The National Society of Leadership and Success on behalf of her work with the Marist College Emerging Leaders Program.
Marist College Graduates Return to Campus to Speak with PR Students
Three Marist College graduates, Lauren Moran, Michael O'Brien and Justin Meise, came back to campus this spring to speak with public relations students.
In early March, the Marist College chapter of the Public Relations Student Society of America (PRSSA) hosted Lauren Moran, manager of baseball information for the New York Yankees. Moran spoke about her work in the sports industry to a crowd of about 35 students including PRSSA members and students in Dr. Tim Mirabito's sports public relations class. This special nighttime event was a cross-department collaboration between the public relations and sports communication programs at Marist.
Later that month, Michael O'Brien, partner at Ketchum, a leading public relations agency, and a member of the School of Communication and the Arts advisory board, conducted a public presentation workshop followed by mini-career counseling sessions for the college's PRSSA chapter members. He later visited Professional Lecturer Jennie Donohue's Communication Campaign Management course to speak with students about researching and developing insights for public relations campaigns. Communication Campaign Management is a senior-level strategic planning course offered as part of the college's public relations concentration.
In mid-April, Justin Meise, principal at River Communications, also spoke to Donohue's Communication Campaign Management course. In particular, his session focused on the how public relations students can connect with clients and build new business.
Marist PRSSA Chapter Tours NYC PR Agencies
Jennie Donohue, professional lecturer of public relations, and 13 public relations students and members of the Marist College chapter of the Public Relations Student Society of America (PRSSA), traveled to New York City on Friday, April 11, to meet with industry professionals working at two communication agencies, Peppercomm and Zeno Group. The students had the opportunity to tour their offices and speak with practitioners, including several Marist alums, about what it's like to work in a fast-paced public relations agency.
The annual spring NYC agency tour is one of several hands-on learning opportunities that the Marist PRSSA chapter offers students each year. It provides valuable insight into the roles and responsibilities of communication professionals as well as opportunities to network and learn about internships and full-time positions.
North Road Communications lands new client
Any student can attest that hands-on learning is one of the most popular ways to master one's craft. For Public Relations students at Marist College, North Road Communications is the embodiment of this idea. North Road Communications is a student-run public relations firm affiliated with the Marist College chapter of the Public Relations Student Society of America (PRSSA). Currently, it has a dedicated staff of about 20 students and manages local Hudson Valley nonproﬁt clients including the Beacon Arts Council in Beacon, NY, the Joint Journalism and Communication History Conference (JJCHC) held in Manhattan, NY, and Family Services right here in Poughkeepsie. Students in the ﬁrm assigned to these accounts work directly with their clients to carry out their needs and goals as a company.
North Road Communications has recently expanded its reach by partnering with the Beacon Independent Film Festival (BIFF), an organization rooted in Beacon, NY. The festival aims to further cultivate a ﬁlmmaking interest in Beacon by making independent ﬁlms more accessible to the general public. Students assigned to the BIFF account plan to conduct research for the festival, promote the festival and its initiatives, and craft press releases for BIFF's Second Annual Festival, which takes place September 12-14, 2014.
The students are very excited to share their work with the community and see how it directly impacts the companies and the local area. Be on the lookout for more North Road Communications news, as all of the firm's clients have unique upcoming
Students attend tapings of The Steve Wilkos Show
On March 5, twenty-one Marist students boarded a bus for Stamford, CT to attend tapings of The Steve Wilkos Show. The show is produced at the Stamford Media Center and is syndicated in 193 markets nationwide.
The students served as audience members for two half-hour programs, and were given a tour of the facilities as well as a question-and-answer session with Executive Director Adam Sorota.
Along with The Steve Wilkos Show, the Stamford Media Center is home to the Maury Show, The Jerry Springer Show, and Trisha. Marist has several students interning at the Stamford Media Center each semester.
Image 1 Caption: Marist students in the studio for The Steve Wilkos Show
Image 2 Caption: Host Steve Wilkos greets the audience prior to taping
Image 3 Caption: Executive Director Adam Sorrota answeres questions for Marist students during a backstage tour
Fashion welcomes to campus Amy Levin, founder of College Fashionista
On Wednesday, March 26, 2014, Marist Fashion welcomes to campus Amy Levin, founder of hugely successful website, College Fashionista, for an intimate discussion of her rise from dorm-dwelling student to CEO of her own company in just a few short years. Following the interview, Amy will respond to questions from the live audience as well as from those submitted via the FOLD's Twitter feed. Join us in the Choir Room (MU3201) at 11:00 AM. This is an event not to be missed for anyone interested in Business, Communications, Fashion or New Media.
Art Department launches Faculty Exchange Program
Under the leadership of Department Chair Donise English and Gallery Director Ed Smith, and in collaboration with their colleagues in the Art and Art History Department, we launched the Faculty Exchange Program this past fall semester. The Faculty Exchange Program is a critical and much needed component of Marist’s global engagement effort. As part of the new program, Alastair Strachan of Glasgow Kelvin College was on campus during the week of November 11th.
During his visit, Alastair visited numerous art classes and gave well attended talks to the Marist community. In addition, Alastair gave a special presentation to students in the Dean’s Circle. Upon his return to Scotland, Alastair distributed Marist t-shirts to Glasgow Kevin College students, and as the picture below shows, the t-shirts were warmly received.
As part of the Faculty Exchange Program, during the spring 2013 term a Marist art faculty will be hosted by Glasgow Kelvin College for a week-long visit.
Center for Sports Communication Hosts ESPN Analyst Bruce Pearl
On Wednesday, March 12, 5pm – 7pm, in the Choir Room located in the newly renovated Marist College Student Center, ESPN basketball analyst and former University of Tennessee head men's basketball coach Bruce Pearl will speak about his work on air and on the court. The talk is free and open to the public. Keith Strudler, Associate Professor and Director of the Center for Sports Communication, will moderate the event.
Communication Students Present Original Research at Scholarly Conference
Three Communication students will present their original research at the Eastern States Communication Association Convention in Providence, RI, this April. Presenting students and titles are:
Alexa Dalbis, "Uses and Gratification of Different Media Outlets Among College Students." Christian Diaz-Georgia: "Social Media in High School Athletics." Oliver Najnigier: "Flopping in the NBA"
Communication Faculty Publish in Prestigious Scholarly Journals
Dr. Tim Mirabito, Assistant Professor in the Marist School of Communications & the Arts published an article titled, “Displaying Disability: A Content Analysis of Person-First Language on NCAA Bowl Championship Series College Athletic Department Websites” in the Journal of Applied Sport Management, that reports on an investigation about how accessibility information is communicated on athletic department websites in the latest volume of The. The article examined how accessibility of seating and parking was presented on department websites and what languages were used to communicate to people with disabilities. Results indicate that less 56% of schools used person-first language when discussing accessible parking and seating while less than 36% of schools used person first language in text. One important implication is that athletic department personnel are often not familiar with the language preferences of most people with disabilities. “The idea is for athletic departments to funnel constituents through their websites, however, in many cases person focused language was an after- thought where it should be the primary thought” Dr. Mirabito added. Along with his co-authors, this latest publication extends Dr. Mirabito’s research on student- athletes and coaches, sport and tragedy, and intercollegiate athletics. Below is the citation:
Dr. Ryan Rogers, Assistant Professor in the Marist School of Communications & the Arts, published an article, “Old Games, Same Concerns: Examining First Generation Video Games Through Popular Press Coverage from 1972-1985,” ion Technoculture, 3, that studied potential risks and fears associated with video games. The article examined video games fears from the 1970s and 1980s that were discussed in the popular press and draws connections to more recent discussion in the press of video game fears. In particular, this study encourages the news media to take a critical examination of technophobia. Dr. Roger’s research indicates that fears related to deviant behavior, drug use and violent behavior still persist in contemporary mainstream media coverage. “Fears related to video games haven’t changed as much as they’ve shifted,” said Dr. Rogers, “whereas earlier people were more concerned with the relationship that video games had to drugs and addiction, now people are concerned with the relationship video games have with violence.” The study follows his line of research on human-technology interactions with particular attention to video game environments.
Communication Faculty Publish Research on Trends in Cyberbullying
Dr. Jen Eden, Assistant Professor in the Marist School of Communications & the Arts, and her colleagues recently published their groundbreaking work on cyberbullying and victimization among 6th, 7th and 8th graders. It was the first experimental work done in this research area on such an important and impressionable demographic.
The article, published in Health Communication, tested 425 pre-teenagers at a public middle school in the Southwest. The purpose of the examination was to assess the effectiveness of interventions as a preventative measure in increasing cybersafety while inhibiting cyberbullying.
“We were actually able to show that interventions can be effective,” Dr. Eden noted. “There have been no previous interventions tested and we were able to find some of the things that were effective and others that were not as effective.”
The study concluded that cyberbullying prevention interventions successfully decreased the likelihood of victimization among potential bullies. Additionally, the research team found that reaching potential cyberbullies in their 7th grade year presented the highest likelihood of prevention. Finally, many of the interventions emphasized the realistic consequences of cyberbullying and those campaigns were found to be the most effective.
Dr. Eden added of the work, “I'm so proud of this publication and all the hard work my co-authors put in.”
This article appears in Health Communication’s first edition of 2014. Dr. Eden co-authored the piece with colleagues Dr. Anthony Roberto, Dr. Matthew Savage, Dr. Leslie Ramos-Salazar, and Dr. Douglas Deiss. Below is the citation:
Roberto, A. J., Eden, J., Savage, M. W., Ramos-Salazar, L., & Deiss, D. M. (2014) Outcome Evaluation Results of School-Based Cybersafety Promotion and Cyberbullying Prevention Intervention for Middle School Students. Health Communication, 29(1), 1-14.
Media Center Staff Active at CCUMC
The Marist College Media Center is a member of CCUMC (Consortium of College and University Media Centers) and its leaders here on campus are leaders within the organization, representing Marist with pride.
CCUMC provides leadership and a forum for information exchange to the providers of media content, academic technology, and support for quality teaching and learning at institutions of higher education. Joey Wall, Media Center Director, and Lee Walis, manager of Technical Services, attended CCUMC's annual conference in October. J
Joey, who serves on the Board of Directors, serves on the Conference Planning Committee. She hosted the opening night ice breaker, moderated several sessions, presented on Managing Student Employees, ran a Strategic Planning focus group, and coordinated the interest group specialty tracks. After the conference, Joey manages CCUMC's YouTube channel with all the session captures. Joey also attended a full day workshop on Copyright and Applying ARL's Code of Best Practices in Fair Use. Other educational sessions of particular interest were on Employee Engagement, The Culture of Change, Leadership (Covey's Habits), Budgeting, Collaboration, and System Integration for Designers & Owners.
Lee Walis has been appointed Technical Liaison for the Annual CCUMC Conference. The Technical Liaison acts as a conduit for the hosts, vendors, and the hotel in order to supply the best possible provisions for the Conference's technical needs. Additionally, this year Lee led a discussion on Project Management and was very active in talks regarding emerging technologies and higher education.
As part of the conference, the group toured classrooms and technology spaces at MidWestern University and Wheaton College.
Congratulations to Joey, who has since been re-elected to the Board for a second term, 2014-2016.
The Blaze’s Betsy Morgan on Campus
Longtime media executive and current president of The Blaze Betsy Morgan spoke at Marist on Wednesday, Nov. 20in the Nelly Goletti Theatre as part of the School’s new Marist Media Leaders Program. Morgan talked and answered questions about her extensive work in building and expanding some of the most important brands in new media. She also commented on the challenges of leading publications on the left, right, and center of the political aisle. Prior to the presentation, Betsy met with students and faculty for an informal breakfast. Among the topics discussed were the landscape of the media industry and best practice in preparing for work in media.