Communication students will team up with American Seafoods for a tasting on April 5 – The Vanderbilt Hustler


The students of CMST 2110, “Persuasion,” would like to persuade you to try Wild Alaskan Pollock with American Seafood on April 5th.

American seafood

Wild Alaskan place prepared by Chef Emily. (Photo courtesy of American Seafoods)

Go fishing! On April 5, a select group of Vanderbilt Communication Studies students will partner with American seafood to host an event for students and faculty to try Wild Alaskan Pollock.

The students will host the event in the E. Bronson Ingram (EBI) Dining Hall from 12 p.m. to 2 p.m., where students can stop by, try the fish, and share their feedback. They are meant to raise awareness of pollock service on our campus, perhaps to increase consumption in the dining halls.

This unique assignment is for Professor Courtney Travers’ ‘Persuasion’ course, CMST 2110, which covers ‘The theory and practice of persuasion with particular emphasis on speech composition, language use and its relationship to speaking style. , structure, and the relationship of structure to the process of preparing speech,” according to the course description.

Specifically, this campaign aims to teach students about marketing, campaigns, and public relations. This hands-on experience provides an opportunity to strengthen students’ visual and pedagogical communication skills, as well as give them practice in the use of strategic communication in an advertising context. These students hope to educate the public about the sustainability and health factors of pollock.

“It’s so cool that we’re getting this on-the-job persuasion experience,” junior Demi Washington said. “You don’t get that opportunity in a lot of classes.”

In 2020, a PR agent from Reed contacted Professor Courtney Travers to see if she was interested in partnering with them on a project.

“Sstudents who took Persuasion in the spring 2021 semester were given projects aimed at persuading multiple audiences on campus — students, catering staff, and chefs — that American Seafoods Wild Alaska Pollock was a good dining option,” said said Travers. “They did it so efficiently that they had the fish served on campus.”

Given the success of this partnership, Reed Public Relations reached out to Professor Travers before the start of the Spring 2022 semester to see if “Persuasion” students might be interested in partnering with Reed and American Seafoods again. Professor Travers agreed, excited about the opportunity for students to get actionable feedback from public relations associates.

Students often complain about the lack of nutritious food on campus. As a rising junior, forced to spend another semester on a mandatory meal plan where each meal costs an absurd $16.60, I look for health benefits in my meal sweeps given the high cost of food. Beyond learning about nutrition, this fascinating class assignment helps students learn both in and out of the classroom. “Persuasion” students have the opportunity to apply their classroom learning to a real-life environment – ​​invaluable experience for a practical area such as communication studies.

Stop by, support your peers and taste the pollock for yourself on April 5th.

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Tanya S. Norvell