Students get real-world experience in HS 158

Frank Strona’s Health Science 158 students showed off a semester’s worth of work Dec. 4 at San José State University, when they shared samples of posters and videos they created for real-world clients. As part of Strona’s class, Health Communication and Technology, the students were divided into groups and assigned a client to work with for the semester.  The students worked with the client to devise a project, from a video to promote the organization or help in devising a social media campaign. The class offers students real-world experience with using technology to devise a marketing campaign, with a requirement to meet with their client early on to set goals and expectations for the project plan. The students then check in regularly as the project progresses to ensure their final project meets the needs of the client.

Students in HS 158 listen to a group present their final video project. The students paired up with real-world clients to create a health-related marketing campaign.

The students discussed their semester’s experience on Dec. 4, inviting some of those they worked with to see clips of their final videos and poster projects.

The students worked with clients who varied from community organizations to an ambulance company to campus student groups. One group even worked with the College of Applied Sciences and Arts Dean’s Office to develop a video that highlights the work CASA alumni are doing in health fields in the community.

At the start of the class, Strona told the students, “You are 97 and a half percent done.” He thanked them for dressing up for their presentation and called the first group up to show off their video. The first group created a video that highlighted how to use Prezi, a presentation application that could be useful to future HS 158 students.  Another group worked with Cough@SJSU, a student anti-tobacco group while another worked with a nonprofit from San Francisco, called Open House, that works to provide affordable housing for LGBT elders.

The students shared their successes during the semester as well as some of their challenges. For instance the group who worked with the dean’s office planned to meet with alumni at their work places, but soon discovered due to confidentiality requirements for clients they had to come up with another location. The students interviewed four former alumni, along with Dean Charles Bullock. The group also had to learn how to add captions to their video, a requirement to make it accessible to all students on campus before it can be screened on monitors in MacQuarrie Hall, where the dean’s office is located.

“We were scared to do it, but we got through it,” one of the group members said. “We can use technology to reach a large population and the video will be used to get students to join CASA.”

Check back later this month for a link to the final video.

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