YMAP Project: Career Connections Charter High School, NHS
Working with the Youth Media Advocacy Project in the Spring of 2011, twelfth grade students in Career Connections National Honors Society chose, as their NHS service project, to create a message campaign to reach parents.
A Carlow student from Carlow's Youth Media Advocacy course (CM/SWSL400), and the YMAP Director met with the high school students each week from March to May 2011. The NHS advisors were CCCHS English teacher Carmen Pasquantonio and Social Studies teacher Erica Fischer.
The students selected a project based on class discussion and information gleaned from surveying teachers, parents and peers to find out what is needed to help students succeed in their education. The CCCHS students concluded that parental encouragement was central to academic success. They developed specific strategies for effective parent-teen communication.
The Carlow mentor helped students consider what media to use to reach their intended audience: parents (age 30-50) of high school students in the city of Pittsburgh. The CCCHS NHS students made an innovative choice – buses!! They also chose television, selecting the dayparts of early morning news and early evening game shows as good ways to reach parents. The students really enjoyed rehearsing and calling media salespeople to obtain rates.
The students came up with concepts for the bus ads, writing the copy and suggesting visuals. They selected which routes they wanted for the bus ads. They submitted their bus ad concept. It can be seen on an overhead sign inside a local bus over a six-month period beginning in September. It is also on the outside of another bus. Their ad is also appearing on a billboard on Fifth Avenue.
The students also storyboarded, scripted and rehearsed two :30 second TV spots (see image below). PCTV-21 came and filmed their commercials which will air on commercial television.
Student being filmed for two, 30-second TV commercials
The students proudly presented their messages and media strategy to an audience of Pittsburgh high school students, Carlow staff and community leaders at the YMAP Project Expo at Carlow University on May 4, 2011. A write-up of the students’ involvement with the Youth Media Advocacy Project also was front page news in The Connector, CCCHS’ newsletter which is distributed to the school community and Lawrenceville business leaders. It described how the students “will never forget this experience” with advocacy, media creation and presentation.
The students who created this social marketing campaign would like parents to keep in mind at the beginning of the fall school year that listening to your teens can help them succeed in school.
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