Knowledge is Power

So much of school revolves around the theoretical. As students, we are constantly asked to apply critical thinking (which is not a bad thing), and to dissect various subjects and practices without getting a real-world sense of their applications. This being my last semester, I decided to take the plunge; I asked myself: what classes can I take that will no only broaden my education, but really push me towards practical, hands-on application.

Okay, I have to be honest, I wasn’t aware that this would be such a class. I was drawn toward the multicultural marketing and entertainment aspects of the class, but had no idea what the class would truly entail.

The term “happy-accident” comes to mind. By then end of class one, I knew I was hooked and jazzed to be taking this class. Not only would I explore unfamiliar, challenging concepts throughout the semester, but also I would be given opportunities to apply what I learned in a real world setting (this blog being a case in point).

To limit myself to three points learned seems like a grave understatement, and does not to justice to this class. However, respecting one of the lessons learned in this class—one should always approach blogging being mindful of brevity and clarity—I will not beat you over the head with everything I’ve learned, but instead, provide you with snapshots of the highlights:

This class has been invaluable in teaching me to write on a deadline, to focus on my words and the clarity of my blog posting, and (probably the most important element of journalistic writing) how to follow the strict but essential guidelines of AP format. I loved doing this blog, and loved all of the challenges that came with it. The twelve rounds I went with WordPress this semester, while at times frustrating, has undoubtedly made me a better writer and taught me to appreciate the technological mediums through which we communicate.

From writing and posting to editing and emailing, this class packed education punches for everyone in the ring, and challenged students to stretch themselves outside their comfort zones. And what exactly was the uncomfortable zone to which I stretched? Editing, and all things related. This particular project pushed me closest to my breaking point. I am, sad to say, a technophobe. So, when I learned that we’d be creating a marketing video for the Pachanga Festival, and that we’d have to personally edit the footage, I wanted to crawl inside somewhere dark where both computers and Apple’s iMovie suite weren’t allowed. But, because I told myself I’d give it my all in this last semester, I instead decided to take the challenge head-on. And boy was it a challenge. Apple may make a lot of things intuitive, but as far as I’m concerned, editing is not one of them. I went round and round with that program, and, at times, thought I’d gotten in way over my head. But, as with all epic struggles, light appeared at the end of the tunnel. I worked with the footage, kneading it like stubborn dough, and eventually sculpted what I think is a pretty solid spot. And what’s even better—I now know how to edit together video footage in the event I’m asked to do so in the corporate world. Just another competency to add to the resume.

Most importantly, the class really showed me how important the multicultural audience is; specifically, the importance of Latinos in the U.S. Although I have experience working in marketing and within the multicultural/Hispanic sector, this class offered me new insight into looking at things. Both books chosen for this class were very informative, and a both a great read.  And with big clients such as Procter & Gamble saying that multicultural audiences matter, this class has served as the cornerstone of understanding that demand and will definitely be an asset when entering the job market.

Thank you for a great class!

Why Latino Should Matter to Marketers

"Why Latino Should Matter to Marketers" Photo Courtesy of http://www.latinobrandingpower.com

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