University Provides Inspiration With Project ME

University Provides Inspiration With Project MEAs a devoted brand advocate for West Virginia University, I follow WVU pretty closely on social media. I’m always impressed with their ability to tell their brand story in personal and compelling ways.

That’s not just my opinion, either. A couple years ago, WVU earned a Shorty Award for being the best university on social media. Earlier this year, WVU’s student-produced TV newscast won a first-place national Emmy Award for best college newscast in the country.

University Provides Inspiration With Project ME
Sarah Melanson is a WVU occupational therapy student and an Ironman triathlete

They know how to tell stories that are worth sharing, that make the connections worth celebrating, that show perspectives worth respecting, and that make you feel like a part of their community.

A recent example is a feature on WVU wide receiver and dancer Ricky Rogers. Ricky’s story is part of a campaign called Project ME that focuses on the unique experiences and emotions of students.

And like the other Project ME stories, Ricky’s story is captivating and encompasses the 6 elements of good digital storytelling:

  • University Provides Inspiration With Project ME
    WVU wide receiver on pointe for following his passions for football and dance

    Living inside the story – Using first-person narrative, the 6 ft.-1, 201-lb. student talks about his drive and passion for both football and dance as well as his big dreams for the future.

  • Unfolding lessons learned – Ricky expresses personal insight when he describes how he feels when he steps onto the stage, whether that stage is Mountaineer Field or a dance studio.
  • Developing creative tension – Ricky engages the audience by describing the similarities he sees in two seemingly opposing passions, dance and football.
  • Economizing the story told – Through a compelling, 2-minute fusion of words, imagery and sound, Ricky conveys how he “found a home for his hybrid of skill sets in football, performing arts and academics on the campus of West Virginia University.”
  • Showing not telling – Ricky’s video uses images, sound and music to create a setting, context and emotional meaning. It opens with dramatic music that builds in intensity as you watch Ricky running through drills at football practice and then transitions to Tchaikovsky’s Dance of the Sugar Plum Fairy as you see Ricky practicing at the barre.
  • Developing craftsmanship – His story incorporates technology in artful ways.
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