CCCA Showcase a focus on talent, achievement
An interactive, anti-Coca-Cola display might have seemed out of place at the 2nd annual Student Showcase of the College of Communication & Creative Arts April 13.
That’s until it caught one’s eye, drew him or her in, and captivated them with a message not necessarily expected on a university campus: do not drink Coca-Cola.
The display – an example of pure 21st century communication – was built by students taking the New Media Concentration and joined projects from students in every CCCA major including art, communication studies, journalism, public relations & advertising, radio/television/film and writing arts.
Public relations & advertising major Shannon Listman said the New Media team sought to captivate viewers and communicate the health risks they’ve seen reported about consuming Coke, Diet Coke and other soft drinks. The display told viewers that drinking these products can lead to obesity, tooth decay, kidney damage and other diseases.
Outfitted in Coke’s red and white color scheme with Coke cans and packaging, the display sent out a sonar-type “ping” when viewers approached and played a video to draw them in. Sensing they were closer, it played another video with information about why they shouldn’t consume Coke products.
“Coca-Cola spends more on advertising than Microsoft and Apple combined,” said Listman, 22, of Williamstown. “Most people recognize the brand but don’t realize all of the health concerns.”
The Student Showcase, which was preceded by an awards program that recognized the college’s top students for 2013-14 and awarded scholarships for next year, provided a platform to highlight a wide array of student work.
Art and art education major Corey Petit of Vineland earned the Robert E. Gates Award for Excellence in Art Education. He learned recently that his 60” by 80” oil painting “Pop-Pop,” a tribute to his grandfather, would be permanently installed in Westby Hall.
Following the awards program, Petit, 23, helmed a display promoting the Art Department that included some of his other works such as an oil abstract reimagining of da Vinci’s “ The Last Supper” and work Petit has done with silk screens.
“The award is a big achievement and I’m honored that they recognized me,” he said.
CCCA Dean Lorin Basden Arnold said the celebratory program took months of planning by students, faculty, staff and administrators.
“I find myself constantly impressed with our students,” she said. “This program is another example of how our students form the core of Rowan University.”
Staffing a display for the Department of Journalism, senior Christian Hetrick, editor-in-chief of The Whit, described how his experience with the student newspaper helped launch his career even before graduating.
Hetrick, 22, of Manahawkin, moments earlier won the Jack Gillespie Award for Excellence in Journalism and has been offered a job covering high school sports for The Philadelphia Inquirer.
“Writing for The Whit is real experience,” Hetrick said of his four years on the paper. “I’m thrilled to be going to The Inquirer. My dad always bought it and it’s what got me into journalism.”