Four Capital students are working on launching their own public relations campaign for Interim President Dave Kaufman.
This Friday, Nov. 13, people will be able to watch an in-depth interview with Capital’s current president. The campaign is a way to introduce students and show more of the personal side of Kaufman’s life outside of the university.
In addition to the video, on Nov. 20 at 9 a.m., the campaign is organizing a meet-and-greet at the fountains where students will be able to meet Kaufman in person.
The full interview will be posted on YouTube for the community to enjoy, and the link will be shared through the university’s main accounts.
The students putting this project together are a part of a class called PR Programs and Campaigns. The group is made up of Wendy Phillips, Josh Miller, Luke McCollugh, and Jalyn Alyssa Moore.
The class began with groups selecting a problem that they would want to solve by using PR. From there, they had to research how to properly organize and run a PR campaign, and then schedule a release window for it.
PR is something that often goes unnoticed in the grand scheme of American business and politics, but for these students, they have a personal connection with PR, and they believe in the importance of maintaining it.
Josh Miller, senior public relations major, said, “With the way marketing and social media is growing, you are building communities following your brand or organization, and you need someone who is trained to handle that.”
Miller was the team member responsible for asking Kaufman the interview questions. One day, he hopes to be a crisis manager for a nonprofit organization or the American government.
Video production is one of the main challenges that has presented itself during this project since most of the team has only a fundamental grasp of filmmaking concepts. They were also limited in the amount of gear that they could check-out for this project.
Only half an hour before the interview with Kaufman, the team found themselves with only an empty TV studio and an iPhone camera. Within that time they quickly scrounge together some chairs and lighting kits to ensure a professional video quality.
Another challenge is micromanaging the different aspects of the campaign.
“Getting everybody to be where you need them to be is one of the bigger challenges,” Wendy Phillips, fourth-year public relations major and member of the team, said. “I think so far we are doing all right. There are hiccups but it’s to be expected.”
Phillips fell in love with PR after meeting a woman in New York City who handled the public relations for a fashion company. Having the ability to fix problems is what drew her in.
The group is hoping that this campaign will create a sense of transparency between students and administration. If successful, the community will not see administration as this distant group of people.
“I’m hoping that this creates a better relationship between the students and the president,” Phillips said.