Stark campus gives students a Swift Kick

Kyle Nelson

Communication campaign brands campus messages

Swift Kick, a communication campaign devised to make students more aware of on-campus issues, is proving to be a success among students and faculty alike.

Marisa Naftzger, assistant director of enrollment management for the First Year Experience, helped spearhead the campaign.

“Swift Kick is a way to brand messages that students need to pay attention to,” Naftzger said. “We hang up posters to let students know it’s time to register. Anything we want to deliver to students, we put that brand on there.”

Along with the poster campaign, there is a Swift Kick study skills class to help students on academic probation or those who need help to get their grades up.

The Swift Kick study skills class was brought about after the poster campaign proved to be a successful communication tool.

Lisa Hart, coordinator of academic services, was a former professor of the class and has seen the success firsthand.

“We started (the class) four semesters ago,” Hart said. “It’s kind of my baby. It’s a one-hour, condensed study strategies class with a strong motivational component to it.

“It has a very practical use,” she added. “ We try to make it as applicable as possible to things they’re doing right now. We help take what we know about ourselves and use it moving forward.”

Having taken 20 years off of school, sophomore exploratory major Paul Stavrianou is one student whom the Swift Kick class helped.

“It helped me get back on track as far as my study skills go,” Stavrianou said. “It helped with creative ways to use the textbooks. I thought it benefitted me a lot because of that.”

For extra communication between students and administration, was also created for undergraduates to gather more information on different aspects of student life. One section of the Web site, titled LMAO (Linking Majors and Opportunities), gives students a chance to interact with each other and administration. A comments section on the “How I Chose My Major” page lets people share their grade school aspirations and whether or not those came to fruition.

Another section on the Web site, TTYL: Tips That You’ll Love, gives students at the Stark campus information on the possibility of transferring to Kent State’s main campus and a stress assessment questionnaire to help them realize their specific coping mechanisms to stress.

Not only a communication tool, the Web site is also used for different contests that students can enter.

“Last year we had where students posted on the forum and answered questions, and they could win prizes,” Naftzger said. “We do things like that so we can drive students to the site and they can (get) advice.”

Despite the success of the program, the administration is not resting. They are continuing to push forward with new campaigns.

“We’re getting ready to do another campaign that will launch in the fall of 2010 that relates to work,” Naftzger said. “You wouldn’t show up late to work so why are you doing it here?”

Contact regional campuses reporter Kyle Nelson at [email protected].