Student News

ISC students develop campaigns for Mission Health Lexington

The Fall 2022 ISC 497 class.
Students in the Fall 2022 ISC 497 Social Change Campaigns course created social marketing campaigns for Mission Health Lexington, a nonprofit organization that provides health care services to Fayette County residents living below the poverty line.

 LEXINGTON, Ky. (Jan. 6, 2023) — Kimberly Parker, professor in the University of Kentucky Department of Integrated Strategic Communication, tasked her Fall 2022 ISC 497 Social Change Campaigns students with creating a social marketing campaign for Mission Health Lexington, a nonprofit organization that provides health care services, including medical, dental, vision and pharmacy care, to Fayette County residents living below the poverty line.

At the beginning of the semester, Abby Pliska, the executive director of Mission Health, attended an ISC 497 class to discuss Mission Health’s current needs. After evaluating these needs, students spent over three months developing a social marketing campaign, which included a purpose and focus, an analysis of their strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats (SWOT) analysis, target audience analysis, creative content, budget, evaluation plan and implementation plan.

Students were grateful for this assignment, as it gave them valuable experience with a real client before graduation — and a chance to discover their professional potential.

“Learning to listen to our clients’ wants and needs, while also communicating effectively with my group to build a strong strategy felt like a large undertaking,” said Maya Malawi, an ISC senior. “I’m grateful for this experience. The opportunity to build a social campaign from the ground up for a real client made a large impact in my readiness for a career after college.”

Kate Maddox, another ISC senior, agrees with Malawi. “Working with an actual client in Lexington allowed me to envision the change that could be made for the organization,” she said.“It's cool to walk away from this class knowing we created a campaign for a nonprofit in our community while we’re only students.”

“Students often don’t see themselves as being experts yet,” said Parker. "I love that by the end of the semester they start to see their potential and realize all the marketable skills they have. That’s my very favorite part.”

At the end of the semester, the groups met to present their final campaigns in front of several special guests, including Pliska and Jennifer Greer, dean of the College of Communication and Information. Pliska plans to take elements from each of the group’s campaigns and strategically use them to increase donations to Mission Health, the ultimate goal of the campaign.

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