At Salem State University, the Expect Program is one of the University’s newest and most beneficial courses for students that are studying communications. The course was created a couple years ago by Robert Brown and Rebecca Hains to help students who are nearing graduation and preparing to enter the real world. At the beginning of the semester, students are separated into groups and are assigned a client. They work and communicate with their client on different tasks in order to market their client’s brand or business. Ultimately, their work leads up to a final presentation of their work with their client throughout the semester.
I have been working closely with the team assigned to my photography business. This team includes Joe Kasper, Danielle Pieroni, Nikki Vergakes, and David Lebrassuer. At the beginning of their semester, I explained how I was in need of something new. Since my focus has been wedding photography for years, it was time for something new. Now, I am mostly focusing on fashion-inspired contemporary portraits. I also showed my team the work I have done with the 99 Faces Project, which will be on exhibit this May at the Museum of Science. This project is a great way to raise awareness of mental disorders by portraying individuals who suffer from them by photographing them and their loved ones.
My team has used social media, blog posts, promotions, and different types of media relations to get my business shared with the public. They shaped each post with a contemporary portrait angle to re-brand my name. Since the start of the semester, my Instagram page has gained many new followers and has opened a new window of communication for me. The blog posts have focused on the people I am teaming up with and include specific work I have done. Also, they are currently in communication with local newspapers and magazines on my behalf.
It is safe to say that my Expect Team has made steady progress obtaining the goals that we set together. Luckily, they have a great team chemistry and work well with each other and with myself. It has been a pleasure working with this team! I am glad these students have had a chance to experience working in the real world. They have done so much for me and my business. I also am grateful for the progress we have made together!