Using my skills as a communicator to produce meaningful projects

This semester, I am finding that my coursework along with my co-op in the MSC and CMC office is becoming intertwined. I am finding the connection between my communication skills, and my passion for social justice and change.

This morning in fact, I had a class that made me think about what it means to be a communication major—or even deeper, a communicator. As someone who has taken on the challenge of becoming a skilled communicator through journalism and other forms of media, I have recently developed a sense of responsibility to be this sort of voice for people who may not have the skills I do or the outlets I do but have a burning desire to be heard.

My internship this semester is an opportunity for me to tell the story of Mother Cabrini and the many different people that live out her mission. I am beginning to find my bearings within the marketing field while discovering the mission of Mother Cabrini and the community she has created. After finally developing my learning objectives, I am beginning to understand more clearly what it is I am doing here.

To clarify some of the people I am working with, here is a brief explanation: Gina Scarpello works in the Cabrini Mission Corps office serving as Director and Nancy Costello works in the same office, coordinating Vocation Promotion for not only the Missionary Sisters of the Sacred Heart of Jesus, but also for the entire Cabrinian Community. My time spent in the office is divided between both of them. On Tuesdays, I work with Nancy, Thursdays with Gina.

 Nancy initially proposed that I help create the image of the MSCs in a way that gives clarity to all people, no matter their knowledge of the mission. In doing this, I have taken on the tasks of producing a brochure, a bookmark, and video snapshots of the sisters. I began by outlining the content that would be in the brochure and then presented to Nancy. I have drafted several different copies of what the brochure will look like and have meet weekly with Nancy to refine the brochure, making certain that it encompasses the model and mission of the MCSs. Next, I will be making an accompaniment piece to the brochure. I will follow the same process as will the brochure.

The largest project that is currently in the making will be the video snapshots of the MSCs and CMCs. I have outlined a storyboard with both Nancy and Gina to plan and prepare for the footage I will be shooting this upcoming weekend in NYC (I will travel with fellow senior Danielle Alio and CMC missioner Roxanne De LaTorre to visit the MSCs at their home and their workplace like the high school, immigrant services, and the nursing home.)

 I am beginning to understand the importance of preplanning. I am familiar with doing my ‘homework’ before interviewing someone. However, storyboards are fairly new to me. I’m used to going out to report, compiling lots of different information, and then digesting it and cleaning it up post interview. Video seems to work a little differently, as well as video that is meant to market a brand. With Gina, I am creating similar projects, aimed at the CMC missioners. Both projects are meant to target prospective people who are considering religious life in any capacity.

Throughout the internship, aside from my 9-5 shift a couple times a week, I will be attending outside events like the MSC assembly and the CMC retreat. Both events will be opportunities to get to know the people living out the mission of Mother Cabrini and help me identify a good angle to produce my marketing projects.

This experience in the past month has not only been educational in regards to marketing and communication, but it’s been very interesting to learn about different opportunities. A little aside—I learned about CMC and Gina through my potential interest in doing service after graduation. Although I have filled my mind with many other opportunities after graduation since our initial meeting, I have thoroughly enjoyed learning about Gina’s job as director of post-grad service and beyond that, getting to know the actual missioners themselves. I not only have appreciation for Gina and Nancy and the jobs they hold, but most recently for the MSCs, the CMCs, and the rest of the community that makes up Cabrini.

I look forward to my trip this weekend and would like to give a shout out to Danielle Alio for taking time out of her busy life to make the journey with me to help me tell the story of the MSCs and CMCs. Yet another example of someone I appreciate!

Originally published October 11, 2011.

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