A team of 21 public relations students in the Grady College of Journalism and Mass Communication spent spring semester creating a campaign proposal for the UGA Arts Council to increase student awareness of and participation in arts offerings at the university.
The UGA Arts Council was convened in October 2011 by Vice Provost Libby Morris and includes administrators from the Georgia Museum of Art, the Performing Arts Center, the Hugh Hodgson School of Music, the Lamar Dodd School of Art, the department of dance, the department of theatre and film studies, the UGA Press, The Georgia Review, the special collections libraries, the Willson Center for Humanities and Arts and the Franklin College of Arts and Sciences.
“Our aim is to raise awareness of UGA’s exceptional programs and offerings in the performing, visual and literary arts,” said Morris. “The council wants to successfully connect with students, so we were pleased when Dr. Lynne Sallot’s campaigns class took on this project.”
The campaigns class conducted focus groups with students and analyzed efforts to promote the arts at more than 40 public research universities around the country.
The project allowed the students to put the skills learned as public relations majors to use.
“Through working with this real-world client, the students were able to grow professionally and academically, while making a contribution to the university community,” said Sallot.
In addition to targeting students in particular, the team conducted interviews and a pilot survey with Grady faculty about their participation in arts activities on campus.
Among the proposals generated by the class was a model for a Student Arts Alliance to serve as an umbrella organization for student arts groups.
“We now have an idea of how this could work, and we will explore this further in the fall when a student representative will begin serving on the Arts Council,” Morris said.
To promote awareness and participation, the Arts Council is putting together plans for events and activities to take place in November.