Get out and vote! Need a ride?

In the last six months, we’ve been doing a lot to embed experiential learning opportunities into our master’s curriculum, from traditional co-ops to international field study courses to experiential capstones.

For me, experiential learning means, quite simply, learning in action. This happens when we apply a skill, a concept, an insight, a new way of looking at things in order to communicate more effectively. This is what we hope to motivate and enable our students (and our alumni!) to do.

An example. Nicole Wild Merle, a recent alumna who is based in Charlotte, applied what she learned in her social media and assessment courses in a co-op project, WomenVotes. You can read about this creative initiative here.

Some of our students and alumni in Charlotte: Martha Alexander, Corinne Guidi, Pamela Darcy-Demski, Kimberly Powers
Some of our students and alumni in Charlotte: Martha Alexander, Corinne Guidi, Pamela Darcy-Demski, Kimberly Powers

But this was just the first step. Along with many other volunteers and nonprofits, Nicole has harnessed digital media to help people get to the polls. As Brian Rashid writes in Forbes, “Carpool2Vote is the first ever volunteer based app that provides free rides to the polls for people all across America. Even the major ridesharing platforms are not offering such a service. Yes, they offer vouchers and gift certificates, but only one-way, and only to new users. Carpool2Vote, on the other hand, offers free rides to anyone who signs up. No credit redemptions. No stress about whether or not you are a first time user. Free for everyone.”

We’d like to hear your stories of ‘learning in action’ — share your stories by commenting or drop me a line at c.zangerl@northeastern.edu. to tell your full story in your own blog post”.

Posted by Carl Zangerl, Ph.D., Faculty

Study highlights ‘mission critical’ role of communication

We know the value of benchmarking: It provides us with a frame of reference, whether we’re assessing the effectiveness of a communication tactics, or, on a much larger scale, the evolution of a profession. Hence, the interesting insights yielded by the Conference Board’s recent study, Corporate Communications Practices: 2016 Edition, based on a survey of 45 U.S. public companies.

Survey respondents identified the top three responsibilities for corporate communications officers as being oversight of the company’s reputation, providing advice directly to the CEO, and supporting employee relations and engagement.

While the full report is only available to Conference Board members, the press release states this: “Growth in corporate communications department budgets, team sizes, and leaders’ compensation, as well as the organizational choice of having senior communications officers report directly to the CEO, point to the fact that corporate communications is becoming increasingly critical to strategy execution and business growth.”

Check out the Conference Board press release.

Posted by Carl Zangerl, Ph.D., Faculty