Four UOW students, wearing orange reflective vests, stand either side of Alison Covington, from Good360, who is wearing a green shirt. They are in front of a media wall. Photo: Supplied

Public relations students help charity bring campaign to life

Public relations students help charity bring campaign to life

UOW partners with Good360 to provide students with valuable, real-world experience

Students from the University of Wollongong (UOW) have partnered with Good360 to bring attention to the charity’s important work and gain valuable experience in public relations.

As part of the subject MARK321: Creative Public Relations Campaigns, close to 50 students, who are studying public relations as part of their degree, worked with Good360 to plan and implement a digital campaign and open day to celebrate the charity’s 7th birthday.

The birthday event was held in May at Good360’s Smithfield location, with hundreds of guests celebrating Good360’s success, the work of their donors and volunteers, and gaining an insight into the work the charity undertakes.

Good360 is the charity of charities. The company repurposes excess and unsold stock from businesses and redirects them to Australian schools and communities that need them most. Since the charity was launched seven years ago, they have redistributed more than $250 million worth of unused, unopened excess products to communities facing natural disasters or individual setbacks.

Dr Susan Slowikowski, lecturer in MARK321, said the subject enabled students to problem-solve in real time and gain experience in juggling many different tasks and competing priorities at the same time.

“Students get first-hand experience of planning for an event, hosting an event and creating a digital campaign. They learn to look for innovative solutions to overcome a myriad of unforeseen problems,” Dr Slowikowski said.

“This was a really successful partnership between UOW and Good360. The students gained so much experience, knowledge and practical advice in just 13 weeks. It is a very busy subject for students, but the results and knowledge can be directly translated into the real world.”

As part of the collaboration, students had to plan their allocated responsibility for the event and report back on progress at weekly meetings. They were also present on the ground at the event, networking with Good360 donors, charities and volunteers, and running social media pages, highlighting the partnership between UOW and Good360.

To visit some of the students’ digital work, search Good360UOW on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and TikTok.

“The students have evidence to show potential employers that they have been able to apply their skills in a real public relations campaign,” Dr Slowikowski said.

“In fact, two of our graduating students secured full-time roles following their work on the campaign with Good360.”

Alison Covington, Managing Director and Founder of Good360, expressed her gratitude to the public relations students, explaining that “a little birthday celebration became a mega-event, something extraordinary, all because of UOW’s support.”

For the past two years, UOW students’ campaigns have been finalists in the national Public Industry awards, competing with specialist in-house units and professional Public Relations Agencies. Clearly, their work is being recognised at industry level.