Co Editor in Chief
Dr. Robert Lemieux’s Health Communication class has taken on quite an unusual assignment for the typical undergraduate student. Lemieux and the 16 students enrolled in his class are in the process of working on health campaigns for two local Carroll County organizations.
After discussing their options, the class agreed to work with Access Carroll, a healthcare provider for residents of Carroll County that are under or uninsured, and DeafMD.org, a website that provides health information to the Deaf and Hard of Hearing population.
Early in the semester, Dr. Robert Wack, Director of Pediatric Services at Frederick Memorial Hospital, and Casey Davis, founder of DeafMd.org, stopped by to speak about their respected organizations and hear the innovative ideas of how the students could help.
Because the class is only a semester long, Lemieux had to stress to the students that they needed to focus on projects that could be done in a timely manner.
“It’s very important to stress our timeframe…we don’t want to say to our clients ‘sorry we didn’t have time to finish,’ that makes everyone look bad,” Lemieux said.
With time ticking away the students focused their attention on their main goals for each organization. The students involved with the Access Carroll campaign realized that donations and volunteers were what they wanted to focus on. Creating a new television commercial and raising funds for the health organization was where they felt they could most help. Those involved with DeafMd wanted to revamp their current website’s opening video as well as their Facebook page and newsletter.
An afternoon visit to the Access Carroll office in downtown Westminster and frequent emails and class visits by Casey Davis gave the undergrads all the fuel they needed to start working.
Within a few days the DeafMd Facebook page was revitalized thanks to students Andrew Carr and Saralyn Silbert.
“It’s something simple enough that we can do, but it will really help spread the word about DeafMd,” Silbert said, “It’s the little things that all add up.”
With only one student in the class completely familiar with video editing, the students knew they were up for a challenge when it came to shooting the commercial for Access Carroll and the new opening video for DeafMd. Senior Oliver Onyskow led a group of students as they underwent many hours in the studio creating and editing the videos.
While the projects are still underway, it is certain that the students enrolled in Health Communication 3381 have learned a great deal of what it takes working for a real health organization and that is exactly what Lemieux was hoping for.
“I hope the students have a better understanding of an area of health and culture that they didn’t previously understand or appreciate. I hope the students take that with them and continue to be involved in their communities when they leave here.”
If you’d like to get involved and donate or become a volunteer at Access Carroll visit their website at http://www.accesscarroll.org/help.asp or call them at 410-871-1478 and be sure to check out http://www.deafmd.org/ where the class’ new video will be uploaded shortly as well as their revamped Facebook page.