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CSUSB Palm Desert Campus PR class helping nonprofits with public relations and social media campaigns

PDC students in the PR Campaigns course are partnering with Coachella Valley nonprofits to help struggling organizations share the innovative ways they are trying to help their communities.

Students from the California State University, San Bernardino Palm Desert Campus are putting theories into practice in their PR Campaigns (Comm 442) course. Their coursework isn’t limited to reading, tests and research papers – it’s geared toward partnering with Coachella Valley nonprofits to help struggling organizations share the innovative ways they are trying to help their communities.

Nonprofit organizations have been absolutely essential during the COVID-19 pandemic, but are known for having minimal resources. The Comm 442 students have put in their time, skills and efforts to help a variety of nonprofits reach their core constituents by assisting with public relations and social media campaigns designed to help reach people in their homes.

“It would be easy to say I was surprised by the quality of campaigns the class presented, but from day one, they have shown a passion to put their education to work,” said Jonathan Yost, CSUSB lecturer of communication studies. “These students are juniors and seniors who have taken a variety of communications courses at the university, and are about to enter the job force during one of the most uncertain job markets I can recall. Luckily, they’ll have experience in both actual public relations campaigns and nonprofit volunteerism that will help them stand out from the crowd.”

Sean Wilson, founder of the Youth Cycling Association, thanked Angel Martinez Morales, a student in Yost’s PR Campaigns course, during a livestream featuring professional cyclists Megan Jastrab and Emma White, and USACycling National Team coach Mari Holden.
A screenshot of an email that went out to the subscribers of the Big Brothers Big Sisters of the Desert’s newsletter referring to the Comm 442 students’ involvement.
A screenshot of an email that went out to the subscribers of the Big Brothers Big Sisters of the Desert’s newsletter referring to the Comm 442 students’ involvement.

Judy Tobin May, executive director of the Big Brothers Big Sisters of the Desert, was also effusive in her praise of the students’ work.

“Now more than ever, it is important for Coachella Valley youth to have a mentor in their lives. Big Brothers Big Sisters is grateful for CSUSB students Erin Halbeisen and Paul Grant, who have aligned themselves with our mission to help bring awareness and raise funds for our one-to-one youth mentoring program,” she said. “Through these students’ project, we have seen an increase in awareness of the role mentoring plays during this pandemic, along with raising much needed funds to keep our Bigs and Littles connected while social distancing. We thank them for their creativity, dedication and commitment to helping kids in our community.”

Affiliated organizations Comm 442 students are working with include:

Alzheimer’s Association Coachella Valley
Big Brothers Big Sisters of the Desert
Boys and Girls Club Palm Springs
California Paws Rescue
Calvary Christian Fellowship
Coachella Valley Women’s Business Center
CSUSB Paws Radio
Honor and Truth Ministry
One Future Coachella Valley
PS Concerts
Raices Cultura
Shelter From The Storm
Youth Cycling Association

For more information on the student-led campaign work, please contact lecturer Jonathan Yost at Jonathan.Yost@csusb.edu.

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