Thursday, 11 June 2015
27 May 2015
|Student winners from left to right: Tony Palosaari, Alice Ashford, Connor Fry and Matthew Webb.|
The strategic communication activities of local community organisations were on display in a student competition at the Dunedin Council Chambers.
Those gathered heard presentations about Youthline, Acclaim, and Otago Access Radio from student groups in the Department of Media, Film and Communication at the University of Otago.
The students interviewed key personnel, analysed communications, and media articles associated with the three organisations.
“Student groups provided insightful analysis of everyday activities we undertake, sometimes without considering how they fit into overall communication strategies”, observed Alan Shanks, Chief Executive of the Council of Social Services Dunedin (see Alan's interview with Dunedin TV News here).
The winning group studied the public relations activity of Otago Access Radio, noting the organisation focused on developing open, two-way responsive communications with key stakeholders and its multiple publics.
“ This was also evident in the way they responded promptly to additional questions we sent them following our interviews”, said Alice Ashford, one member of the winning group.
Students were impressed with the enthusiasm demonstrated by community group staff and volunteers in their selfless commitment to serving others.
“What really impressed me is the passion that people working in these community groups bring to their work”, said Sophie Walton, one of the competition finalists.
“They show that money really isn’t the be all and end all”.
All groups identified the increasing use of social media to supplement other communication channels as a prominent feature marking changes in public relations activities.
“This is particularly important in a place like Dunedin where students represent such a large percentage of the population and are a key public for many community organisations”, noted Tony Palosaari, another member of the winning group.
The event was jointly organised by the Council of Social Services (Dunedin) and the university’s Department of Media, Film and Communication.
For Further Contact:
Dr Michael Bourk