Friday, July 3, 2009

Public Service Announcements for Community Partners

by Ann Abbott

In a previous post, I talked about building community-university partnerships that respond to community-identified needs. Clear and frequent communication, as everyone knows, is the key to building and maintaining mutually beneficial partnerships.

With one of my community partners, I took this type of communication to another level--I joined the Board of the East Central Illinois Refugee Mutual Assistance Center. At our monthly Board meetings I gain new insights into the Refugee Center's resources and needs. That allows me to think about how to match those resources and needs to my community service-learning (CSL) students' needs and resources.
At our last Board meeting, one of the Co-Directors said that they would like to do a Public Service Announcement for the local community-access television stations.

A perfect project for an enterprising CSL student who wants to gain skills in research, writing and project organization! And in the end, the student will have a video of professionally-produced public service announcement (PSA) to show to potential employers as proof of their work.

Here are the necessary steps for the student:
  1. Do an on-line search for public access television in Urban and Champaign to find out how to start the process for doing a PSA.

  2. In consultation with the Co-Directors of ECIRMAC, write a script for the PSA.

  3. Inform the ECIRMAC staff of times and duties for the actual PSA production. If the student has information to add, he/she can appear in the PSA as well.

  4. Do all the post-production follow-up that is necessary.

I'm hoping a student will tackle this in the fall. And if one community partner has expressed a need to do a PSA, perhaps our other partners would like one, too.

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