SCC 400 and the Rethink Campaign

By Heather Matley, Carolyn Crosby, and Tessa King.

Students part of the fundraising group brainstorm ideas the week before the campaign.

The semester long course SCC 400, or Message Design II, works to instill effective message implementation skills in students by giving them the chance to design and implement a campaign under expert supervision. Students  are able to gain first hand marketing experience while applying theories learned in the classroom and are also given the chance to analyze the results of their efforts.

One Spring 2017 incarnation of this course saw the first installation of the Rethink campaign, a well-received project in which students worked to create a week-long campaign, the goal being to de-normalize the attitude of misusing Adderall. The process first began with students solidifying their understanding of theories such as the Theory of Planned Behavior in order for them to determine the best approach to achieving their goal to de-normalize the attitude towards Adderall abuse.

After the class fully understood the issue of Adderall abuse on college campuses and how to combat it, they set to work to develop a marketing strategy to deliver their campaign. This included finding an identity (developing a logo, mascot, and other design elements), perfecting chosen designed messages, and creating a strong presence on campus.

Students exhibited their work during one week near the end of the semester in campaign style where they tabled, posted the key messages around campus, and developed a strong social media presence. This week’s success was monitored with pre and post test surveys, which proved that the class had in fact met their goal of changing the campus’s perceived attitude of Adderall by a high enough percentage.

Many students who completed the course found it to be one of the most rewarding and hands-on courses offered by the school. The believed the first hand experience of designing a message and implementing it in a well-monitored environment helped them to hone their skills and make them more marketable. It’s important to note while not all SCC 400 classes run exactly the same, they all revolve around the practical approach of designing a campaign. It’s a concept that continues to be a student favorite.

The week after the campaign was completed, students gathered to showcase their t-shirts and mascots.