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Free Speech Center at MTSU

Articles, news and insights about free expression in America

Franklin College

Overview

Senior public relations majors in the Public Relations Campaigns course, PRL 480, started their “1 for All” campaign by conducting research, then developing individual strategic communications plans, which were graded by the professor, Ray Begovich, and then combined by students into a single overall class plan. Creative materials (videos, posters, a large banner, photos, social media posts, signs and temporary tattoos) called for by the plan were written, designed, produced and distributed. A special event was held as the cornerstone of First Amendment awareness efforts.

Research

Before deciding on any strategies and tactics, all students in the class conducted research of the target audience – Franklin College undergraduate students. Methodologies used by the students were an online survey, intercept interviews and two focus groups. Key findings of the students’ research:

Strategic planning

Following the research activities, all 16 students in the class wrote individual strategic communications plans for the 1 for All campaign and received individual grades. Students then combined what they believed were the most effective elements of the individual plans into one workable, manageable, affordable plan.

Event    

The key tactic of the plan was a 1 for All awareness event held from 10:30 a.m. to noon on Oct. 29 in the high-traffic area of the student center atrium. Free doughnuts, brownies, cookies, coffee and lemonade were provided to any student who read the First Amendment aloud.

Participants could read off a large banner designed and created for the event, or from previously distributed tickets designed for the event and imprinted with the First Amendment language.

Print and digital materials

Results

At least 176 students participated. (There were many more, but only 176 could be reliably counted at the hectic event.) The figure represents 19.5 percent of the student body at the small liberal arts college just south of Indianapolis. A pretty remarkable turnout!

 

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