Media Sandbox Students Helping Nonprofits

Posted on: February 28, 2014

GudeSXSWKidsA 1,402-mile journey, from East Lansing to Austin, Texas, with stops in four different cities along the way helping nonprofits with communications and marketing needs - that's the spring break plans for seven College of Communication Arts and Sciences students as part of the Media Sandbox Street Team's Out of the Box challenge March 1-9.

As the team travels to the South by Southwest (SXSW) Interactive Festival in Austin, Texas, they will stop in four cities - Indianapolis, Nashville, Dallas and Austin - and offer their creative services - web design, branding, photography, advertising, public relations and social media marketing - to local nonprofit organizations to help them help others.

Their challenge: to help each nonprofit within a 24-hour time frame.

"I couldn't image a more rewarding way to spend my spring break," said Andrea Raby, one of the Street Team members taking the trip.

The cross-country journey begins Saturday, March 1, at 6:30 a.m. at the CAS Building. From there, the team will travel to Indianapolis, Ind., where they will help the Center of Wellness for Urban Women. The following day, they head to Nashville, Tenn., to meet with The Arc Davidson County. Their next stop is The Beyond Foundation in Dallas, Texas. And finally, they will meet with The Mobile Art Program in Austin, Texas.

"They're not doing it for a class or for money or for even pats on the back. They're volunteering to do this," said Karl Gude, graphics editor-in-residence and Media Sandbox faculty member, on his Facebook page. "...what these young people are doing is valuable beyond all measure."

The team will reward themselves by spending one day, March 7, at the South by Southwest (SXSW) Interactive Festival in Austin, where Gude will be speaking.

Throughout the trip, the team will chart their progress on their Out of the Box blog. They also will film the entire trip to be used for a documentary exploring how creativity connects us.

This isn't the first time the Media Sandbox Street Team has reached out to nonprofits. In November, the team spent a day in Detroit at the Georgia Street Community Collective (GSCC), a community center and garden, doing a creative revamp that left the organization with a new website, updated social media pages, a media release promoting the organization's next event and a sponsorship packet.

The Media Sandbox Street Team consists of group of MSU students from three CAS majors - Advertising + Public Relations, Journalism, and Telecommunication, Information Studies and Media.

The team has been working to raise money for the Texas trip since the end of December and is still collecting money. If you wish to donate, go to the Out of the Box donation web page.

You also can follow their journey on Facebook and Twitter.

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