Capstone Agency participates in third annual CreateAthon

Photo+courtesy+of+Anna+Jones+
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Capstone Agency participates in third annual CreateAthon

Photo courtesy of Anna Jones

Photo courtesy of Anna Jones

Photo courtesy of Anna Jones

Photo courtesy of Anna Jones

Amanda Le, Contributing Writer

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Members of University of Alabama’s student-run communications firm, Capstone Agency, participated in their third annual CreateAthon on Feb. 1.

More than 90 college students came together to provide communication services for 15 non-profits in a 24-hour pro bono marketing marathon, in which members contributed more than 2,208 hours, according to a blog post written on UA PRSSA’s website.

Agency members were divided into 5-6 person teams with group members they didn’t commonly work with, assigned various assignments and then were asked to perform a presentation for their client at the end of the 24 hours. Students served clients such as Boys & Girls Clubs of West Alabama, The Freshwater Land Trust, Tuscaloosa SAFE Center and Caring Days Adult Daycare, among other local non-profits.

Anna Claire Toxey, a senior majoring in public relations, who serves as the agency’s senior media coordinator, said her favorite part of CreateAthon is the client presentations.

“After you’ve been up for 24 hours, seeing their smiles, the gratitude in our client’s faces and just knowing that you were able to make that difference in just a short amount of time was my favorite part,” Toxey said. “Sometimes it’s not easy, but it’s really worth it in the end.”

Anna Jones, a senior majoring in public relations and the agency’s non-profit coordinator, said her favorite part was getting to further know some of the other agency members.

“You’re spending 24 hours with people you came into this not really knowing that well, and then becoming really good friends once it’s over,” Jones said. “It definitely enhances the agency culture.”

Jack’s, Waffle House and a few other local businesses served as sponsors for CreateAthon, allowing students to refuel with catered meals and snacks – a frequently expressed perk.

Several APR staff and faculty were also very involved and encouraging toward students throughout the all-nighter process by dedicating their time, sitting down and brainstorming with them and approving ideas.

“Seeing the client’s reaction afterwards is another one of my favorite parts because sometimes since we’re students, we often exceed their expectations because we’re able to produce really exceptional work in just 24 hours,” Jones said. “It makes you feel good being able to help these people who contribute their jobs and careers helping other situations each day.”