The University of Texas at Tyler
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UT Tyler Office of Marketing and Communications

Creating Solutions: UT Tyler Students Create Campaign For Food Service Vendor

July 19, 2012

Media Contact:  Hannah Buchanan
Public Affairs Specialist
Marketing and Communications
The University of Texas at Tyler
903.565.5769 or 903.539.7196 (cell)

Students at The University of Texas at Tyler have developed an innovative advertising campaign for the university’s food service provider, Dr. Randall Powell, vice president for business affairs, announced.

The campaign, one of six developed by the spring 2012 principles of advertising class, is expected to increase meal plan awareness, sales and traffic for the Metamorphosis Café, commonly known on campus as The Met.

Teams within the class submitted their work and presented campaigns to both UT Tyler and Aramark, the prospective clients.

“At UT Tyler, we engage our students in practical learning that prepares them for their work lives,” Powell said. “This project not only gave the students a real-world experience, but also provided Aramark and the administration with numerous, useful ideas. Many of the students’ suggestions were immediately implemented, and more will follow shortly. I encourage other Aramark universities to partner in such a fashion to benefit students and sales.”

 ‘Team Fresh’ members Rosalinda ‘Linda’ Edwards of Justin, Kaleigh Acker of Tatum, Jessica Robicheaux of Humble and Kassidy Veraska of Tyler won the mock contract. 

“All proposals contained valuable ideas that could be used within the dining operations, and I was very happy to participate in this learning experience for the class,” said Shannon Mariani, UT Tyler food service director.

Through the process, students gained an awareness and understanding of how much preparation is needed to present a comprehensive advertising campaign to a client and how to ‘think on their feet’ during a meeting, according to Dr. Mary Anna Kidd, UT Tyler assistant professor of mass communication.

“It’s the basics of what you would do when you’re in a real job, and it gives students a chance to see if this is really what they want to do,” said Kidd, who teaches the course.

Each team researched Aramark’s business model, background, history and competitors. They also conducted consumer research, analyzed findings and formulated strategic directions within the campaigns.

The Met features restaurant-quality food through Aramark’s Real Food on Campus concept, which brings the food preparation process out of the kitchen as much as possible. Six different food stations provide fresh, made-to-order meals for the Tyler campus and its visitors, Mariani said.

Aramark became UT Tyler’s food service vendor in 2006.

For more information, contact Kidd, 903.566.7076 or mkidd@uttyler.edu or Mariani, 903.566.7074 or smariani@uttyler.edu.

One of the 15 campuses of the UT System, UT Tyler offers excellence in teaching, research, artistic performance and community service. More than 80 undergraduate and graduate degree programs are available at UT Tyler, which has an enrollment of almost 7,000 high-ability students at its campuses in Tyler, Longview and Palestine.
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