A successful first event: Lock Up Your Future Campus Day

March 3, 2009

The 2009 UO PRSSA Bateman competition team recently planned its first event: Lock Up Your Future Campus Day. With a little more than two months to prepare, the Bateman team organized a day full of college-related activities for nearly 300 eighth grade students. Overall, the event was a huge success and taught us many lessons in event planning.

Lock Up Your Future is the local campaign for the national Consumer Bankers Association “Hit The Books Running” campaign. Each team member applied to be a part of the campaign and has worked tirelessly to make the campaign a success.

UO PRSSA Bateman Team

The goal of Lock Up Your Future is to communicate to eighth graders the importance of preparing early for their future. Many people are unaware of the large amount of resources available to students who wish to pursue higher education options. Our research indicated the best way to share our key messages was through a Web site and large campus event.

Our hard work and planning resulted in a Web site that offers resources for students, parents, and teachers and The Lock Up Your Future Campus Day, which took place February 26. During the campus day event, students participated in a mini college fair, mini lecture, campus tour, and “map your future” activity.

Instructor Kelli Matthews at Lock Up Your Future Campus Day

The event was a success thanks to our wonderful volunteers. Several University of Oregon students gave up their precious time to lead activities, give tours, and supervise.

Lessons I learned from planning my first event:

The event may not run on schedule:
The first middle school arrived 20 minutes late, which caused us to move every session back 20 minutes. Many volunteers were confused and it was hard to communicate the new plan-of-attack once the event had started.

Give volunteers clear instructions:
The team and I assumed many students would be able to follow the brief instructions we provided them. Some volunteers were confused and could have benefited from a thorough orientation of the day’s planned events.

Eighth grade students have their own agenda:
Some eighth grade students decided to tune out during the sessions. We learned to keep information interesting and interactive to help students stay involved and intrigued.

Although there are many things I think our group would do differently, the Lock Up Your Future campaign was a huge success. I’m proud to be a part of this team of highly motivated, professional PR students.

Check out the coverage of the Lock Up Your Future Campus Day on KMTR News Source 16.

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One Response to “A successful first event: Lock Up Your Future Campus Day”

  1. I definitely think a volunteer orientation day would have been a great help. If this is recreated, that will be something we will recommend. I’m so proud of the volunteers for sticking with it and doing the best they could under the hectic circumstances.

    And even though we didn’t exactly have a “plan b” in case the kids were (even more) late, we did an awesome job pulling through and making the best of the time we had – especially for first time event planners ;)We did what was necessary to get back on course.

    Courtney

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