A creative strategies class at The University of Texas-Pan American will be recognized for their achievements in the "Guys Night Out" promotional campaign for the Rio Grande Valley Dorados football game on July 14 at the Dodge Arena in Hidalgo.
"Bucky said he wanted to provide UTPA students with a real-life experience and give them the benefit of actually producing the winning spots. I was thrilled, and off we went!" Selber said. "Having a real client to present to always adds a level of professionalism... I sincerely believe that service projects prepare our students for jobs in advertising and public relations. They give students the opportunity to practice what we've been teaching them, not just answer a few questions on a scantron and 'think' they know it."
The four campaign teams were judged by Selber, Buckborough, a Dorados marketing team member and the Hooters general manager. Dorados half-time entertainment according to Buckborough will also provide the UTPA class with numerous awards on the field. The grand-prize winners will also be able to watch the game from a private suite.
"We've wanted to strengthen our relationship with UTPA and this was a great way to get the ball rolling," Buckborough said. "We're always excited to get outside ideas. Sometimes you need an outside observer's opinion. We're more than happy to open things up to aspiring students and help them get some real-world experience."
The winning team for their two radio spots, TV commercial, and two promotions included senior art major Sabrina Garza; senior communication majors Claudia Barreto, Sandra Morales, Joe Montelongo; and junior communication major Vianey Gonzales. Winners for the print ad included senior communication majors Bianca Palomin, Mercedes Cantu, Criselda Rios, Yvonne Silva and junior communication major Vanessa Munguia. The additional promotions winning team included senior communication majors Victor Ituarte, and Michael Betancourt, and senior general studies majors Paul Stoll, and Anwar Garza.
"It was a real-life client, and we did a real-life campaign, and it's something I can show someone and say I was a part of this, and our work was actually chosen. I think it will give me an edge over someone else who has not worked on a real-world campaign," Ituarte said.
Selber believes one of the main challenges presented to the students was the time frame needed to complete the project. They had three weeks to create and present their assignment, and were not only judged by their creations but in their presentational skills as well.
"It was a little nerve wracking. You definitely feel like the pressure is on because it's not just a school project that you're working on for a grade. People are depending on you to come up with an idea they can use to sell their product and/or service. It was very exciting though; I had a lot of fun working on this campaign," Morales said.
Buckborough said that he will definitely consider UTPA advertising/public relations students to do future projects. According to Selber, Buckborough plans on presenting a similar campaign for the RGV Killerbees hockey team to a fall semester creative strategies class taught by Assistant Professor of communication Dr. Jennifer Lemanski.
"One of the goals I had when I got here was to have the community call us and say we want your students to do a project for us... we're starting to get recognized in the community and we're building brand recognition in our department," Selber said.
Dorados tickets that normally sell for $36 are on sale for $12 for the July 14 game and are available through Selber at 956/381-2541. Cash, checks or credit cards are accepted.