Spotlight on Teaching: Interact with the World

foxmanOne of the things we at CTE like to do in our blog is spotlight great examples of teaching at SMU.  Today’s Dallas Morning News features Cox’s Judy Foxman and her BBA Honors Marketing Practicum class.  Students in this class form small groups, then spend a semester competing with each other to develop the best marketing campaign for a real client, with the winner chosen after final presentations at the end of the semester.  In the process, they apply the knowledge of marketing they have developed in their classes, hone their writing and communications skills, and learn to work as members of a team. And the contest isn’t just pretend — students get the benefit of the authentic audiences who react to their work.

Today’s news story features the winning team from spring 2013 — “Team Synergy” created a campaign for Fox Sports Southwest’s college football coverage — “Sofa Stadium” — which has actually been produced by Fox and will run as 15- and 30-second spots throughout the college football season.  Graduates in 2012 also created a winning presentation for Fox Sports; unfortunately, it was for the Dallas Stars and wasn’t used because of the NHL lockout.  Even students who are not on the winning team know they are getting a valuable experience. Here’s 2012 grad Ryan Allison’s take on the class:

“Just the fact that we had the chance to do a real-life, real-world project before we graduated and went to the real world, I felt like it really gave us a step ahead of other students in a marketing program.  It was kind of a job before we got a job.”

This class is a lot of work for both Foxman and her students, but there are no regrets on either side. “It was the best class I ever took at SMU,” said 2012 grad Mayela Trespalacios.

Do you (or does someone you know) teach a class that engages students with the community? Tell us about it in the Comments.

About Beth Thornburg

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