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June 05, 2017

Clark State New Media Students Partner with Cascade to Promote Employee Safety

MEDIA CONTACT: Laurie Means | Director of Marketing | 937.328.6145

Clark State Community College New Media students partnered with the Cascade Corporation to produce an employee safety video as part of the New Media Capstone course. 

“In the Capstone class, we work with clients in the community to give our students real-world experience and help to build their resume,” said Scott Dawson, Faculty Coordinator of Graphic Design and New Media for Clark State. “We also designed a new website for the Clark County Fairgrounds and did a social media strategy for Ridgewood School.” 

Dawson said the Cascade Corporation was putting together a safety video and trusted Clark State students with this important work. “Besides being easy to work with and professional during every part of the process, they were kind and generous to our students,” said Dawson. “It encouraged our students, and this in combination with the students' attention to detail allowed us to create an exceptional final project for the Cascade Corporation.”

Aimee Belanger-Haas, Dean of Business and Applied Technologies at Clark State, recommended the Cascade Corporation to the New Media students following a request for help coordinating a safety video. 

Dawson, along with Clark State students Brian Dobyns, Jay Roach, John Johnson, Elizabeth Kimmel and Caleb Thomas worked on the safety video.

Dobyns and Roach served as project managers, Johnson put together the motion graphics, and all of the students were involved in the filming and editing. “I jumped in to film alongside the students and created the voiceover and music for the project,” said Dawson. “It was a team effort, and the students embraced the process as well as the final product.”

Production of the Cascade safety video began in March of this year with filming on April 4. Students then presented a draft of the film to Cascade later in the month.

“This gave our students only two weeks to make any final changes, but the client was so impressed with the product that they didn't request any revisions,” said Dawson.

In fact, the Cascade Corporation was so impressed with the final product, they shared it with their corporate office as an example of the quality work being done by Clark State students. Cascade also generously gave the students permission to feature their section of the video in their portfolios.

“We would definitely work with Cascade Corporation again,” said Dawson. “They value the work we are doing at Clark State to build a future workforce, and they encouraged our New Media students in every step of the process.”

The Cascade Corporation also donated $350 dollars to the Clark State Foundation scholarship fund to support the education of a New Media student.

“This was so encouraging because many of our students struggle to pay for their education and for Cascade to invest in our students in this way makes experiential learning work like this for the community and local business so rewarding,” said Dawson. “We will continue to work with Cascade Corporation and serve local business and the community with low-cost multimedia and graphic design alternatives while giving our students invaluable experience in the workforce.”

Darlene Carpenter, human resources manager for Cascade, said Cascade has a great partnership with Clark State. “We have participated in advisory committees, and have classes for our employees held onsite for manufacturing and business,” she said. “The media students and Mr. Dawson were great to work with, and our employees had a great time.”

Carpenter said while coordinating the video, Cascade focused primarily on the heart of their organization: their employees. Employees were asked if they wanted to participate and were asked to perform different tasks for the filming. The video focused on:

  • Commitment to Safety
  • Equipment Safety
  • Electrical Safety
  • PPE (Personal Protective Equipment)
  • Emergency Action Plan
  • Forklift, Crane & Ladder Safety
  • Environmental

“We provided a shot list prior to the day of production and staged most of the machines or props needed for the filming so it would go faster,” said Carpenter. “I wrote the script with specific safety information that pertains to our facility, and asked our internal Safety Coordinator and our external Safety Consultant to review it for additional comments.”

Carpenter said the video is used as part of safety orientation for all new hires, temporary employees, vendors and visitors to our facility. Employees gave input to the machines or activities performed during the video to make it more interesting and realistic to the work done every day at Cascade.

“Many of the canned videos that are available for purchase do not pertain to the special circumstances in a manufacturing facility and many times, topics don't apply,” said Carpenter. “It's hard to get employees to understand the risks if the video isn't site specific, which is what led to this idea.”

Carpenter said Dawson and the New Media students were a pleasure to work with. “The video exceeded our expectations,” she said. “Our internal staff and employees, as well as our corporate managers were very impressed with the production and professional end product.”

Clark State’s New Media program is offered on the Leffel Lane Campus in Springfield. The New Media Program is a two-year computer-intensive learning experience focusing on industry-standard practices. 

New media brings together web design and development; social media; and digital content creation such as photography, video, audio and animation to create the ultimate, interactive experience for a computer user. Students with this degree can work in the field of Web Design and Development, User Experience Design, Social Media Strategy, Digital Marketing and Digital Content Production.