Stephynie Perkins, PhD
Associate Professor, Public Relations
Stephynie Perkins earned her B.S. and M.S. degrees from the University of Tennessee and then migrated to the University of Florida to earn a Ph. D. in public relations. She joined the University of North Florida as a faculty member in 2003 and has used the community-based model to inform her instruction for years. She reasons that students take away a deeper understanding of the material covered in the course and it has a positive impact on others.
In her Public Relations Campaign course, students create a comprehensive communications campaign to address the needs of a nonprofit organization on the First Coast. Students have partnered with local organizations like Sickle Cell Disease Association of Northeast Florida, the Duval County Extension Service, Girls Inc. and Learn to Read Jacksonville to conduct primary research, produce original advertisements and unveil their work in a professional presentation. By working with real clients, students learn to think critically to apply theories they learn in the classroom in a real-world setting. It underscores the value of the students’ education and provides a service that organizations could not otherwise afford. A campaign done for Girls Inc. was valued at $50,000 by a local media professional.
As a Community Scholar, Dr. Perkins is committed to strengthening the assessment piece of her community projects. In addition to the peer evaluations and client feedback used to assess students, Dr. Perkins has built a rubric to provide to a panel of media experts she hopes to put together. Armed with this rubric, the experts could then give constructive feedback about the strengths and weaknesses of the presentation during a dry run.
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