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Jay Horton

News Release Writing

Know the Five makes mental health a priority at UGA

Know the Five UGA
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:

Know the Five makes mental health a priority at UGA

ATHENS, Ga. – March 6, 2017 – Mental health literacy becomes a common topic of conversation at the University of Georgia thanks, in part, to one public relation campaign course’s efforts in the last month to decrease the stigma surrounding emotional suffering on campus. The campaign, Know the Five UGA, working in combination with several student organizations, including the Student Government Association and the Public Relations Student Society of America—Drewry Chapter, has collected over 500 pledges, gathered a robust social media following, and held several successful campus events all since launching on Feb. 15.

Their benefit concert alone, Nuçi’s Knows the Five, held on Tuesday, Feb. 28 at Nuçi’s Space attracted nearly a hundred attendees and raised $525 for mental health awareness. Featuring live performances by local artists Son and Thief, Hill Elliott, and Tommy Trautwein, the event created an open, positive dialogue about mental health in the local community through music.

“The concert was so fun,” says Hill Elliott, 21, of Roswell, Georgia. “I can always get behind performing for people when I see eye-to-eye with everyone in the room about a certain issue. In this case, we all shared a focus on raising awareness for mental health. It just felt right.”

Concert attendee, Bailey Smith, 21, of Rocky Mount, North Carolina says, “Combining a concert and a social issue was a great way to make it easy to talk about a difficult topic.”

Know the Five UGA believes that understanding the five signs of emotional suffering: personality change, agitation, withdrawal, poor self-care, and hopelessness, is an important first step in the mental health literacy. With this knowledge, people can help prevent pain and suffering and get those in need the help they deserve.

“Our emotional well-being should be valued just as much as our physical well-being,” says Jordan Calhoun, 22, of Kennesaw, Georgia and one of the coordinators for Know the Five. “Sometimes the battle for mental health awareness can feel like a losing one. Our concert proved to me that people care about breaking the stigma surrounding mental illness and want to learn how to better care for themselves and their friends. Seeing people care about the Five is nothing short of humbling, inspiring, and encouraging.”

With less than a week left to go in the campaign, Know the Five UGA encourages everyone to take the next step in becoming an advocate for mental health. Sign the pledge to know the five signs online at knowthefiveuga.com.

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Know the Five UGA is a student-run, independently organized campaign benefitting the Campaign to Change Direction. The campaign’s goal is to raise awareness of the five signs of emotional suffering and increase mental health literacy within the Athens-Clarke County community. For more information: please visit knowthefiveuga.com or email knowthefiveUGA@gmail.com.

Contact: Jay Horton, Communication Coordinator, jayhorton@uga.edu, (540) 421-6968

Images: http://bit.ly/2lL3JFt

Graphic Design

Happy Holidays from CRETS

This holiday e-card was designed in Adobe Photoshop and InDesign for the University of Georgia’s Office of Campus Reservations, Events and Technical Services. The card was to be distributed by email to current clients wishing them the best during this joyous season.

Featured

New Church Communication Plan

For my final project in my Public Relations Communication Class, I worked with Revs. Anjie and Andy Woodworth from New Church United Methodist to create a complete communication plan and a plethora of materials to get their beloved church-plant off the ground.

New Church is an authentic, artistic and adventurous congregation of the United Methodist Church located on 1561 McLendon Ave., near Little Five Points. Pairing an intellectual faith with warm hearts, New Church UMC seeks to build a radically inclusive, justice-driven community of Christ-followers in the heart of Atlanta. New Church was formed in the merger between the historic Epworth and Druid Hills United Methodist congregations in downtown Atlanta in January 2016. Its new congregational status and lack of communication means it has many opportunities for growth specifically in an initial campaign.

Materials created for the project included a news release, a fact sheet, a feature pitch, a feature release, interview preparation, a speech, an event plan and a social media calendar. All materials focused around opportunities of growth I discovered during a situational analysis of the organization. These opportunities included building a stronger volunteer network focused on both internal and external outreach, solidifying their unique brand identity, further developing their website, creating awareness across multiple social media platforms, and strengthening relationships with the local community while diversifying connectional opportunities for its parishioners.

The plan in its entirety can be found by clicking on the link below.

Communication Plan

Blog Telenovelas

La Sabiduría de Leonardo Padrón

Leonardo Padrón

¿Te has preguntado cómo sería a hablar con un escrito clásico? Alguien con un maestría completa de una idioma que cada palabra y frase que le escrita tira de tu alma emociones que nunca has sentido antes. Alguien con una sabiduría increíble que crees que no va a lograr en toda tu vida. Un escritor como Walt Whitman, Gabriel García Márquez o Emily Brontë. Así, martes, tuve la oportunidad a hablar con una persona que es tan similar a ellos como puede ser, Leonardo Padrón, el escritor y poeta venezolano.

Padrón es el escritor famoso de las telenovelas Cosita Rica, Ciudad Bendita, y La Mujer Perfecta entre otros. También él es un líder de opinión para el país de Venezuela y un gran parte de América Latina. Tiene más seguidores de Twitter de cualquier otra persona que he hablando. Es interesante, aunque él tiene un contrato a Venevisión para escribir nuevas programas, debido de su oposición al gobierno, ninguna de sus telenovelas entran producción. Debido a su posición en Venezuela, el canal no quiere arriesgarlo. Ahora, continúa escribiendo poesía y ensayos entre otras cosas.

Nuestro conversación con Padrón fue un inspiración para muchas razones. El primer es que Padrón nunca vive para asentarse todo el tiempo y ser contenido. Le rompe constantemente el status quo. Cada telenovela escribió fue de ruptura. Desafió el papel de la mujer, no solo en las telenovelas pero también en sociedad por ejemplo por el texto de la mujer perfecta. Obligó gente a pensar sobre de la condición de Venezuela. En el personaje de Olegario en Cosita Rica, hace un comentario sobre del presidente del país, una cosa muy controversial. Por este razón, dice que esta telenovela fue el más difícil de escribir.

Aunque, sea probablemente hasta la interpretación del lector, pienso que Padrón ha escribido sobre de la política en su poesía también. Me gusta mucha, por ejemplo, su poema “Frontera.”

Frontera
Según el salmo de Szymborska
la niebla y el polen se burlan de las fronteras.
No hay tierra prohibida
para la ruta de las nubes.
No hay aduana
para un pájaro nacido en México.
No hay ley que detenga
el viento de los acantilados.
Nadie le pide visa
a la canción de moda.
La frontera es una línea titubeante.
Somos también lo que prohibimos
y lo que anhelamos ser.
Somos el aire.
El paisaje que escapa.
La tierra que duerme al otro lado.

 

Pienso que esta poema habla a la condición humano y la problemas de refugiados y de inmigración en los Estados Unidos. Lo tiene poderoso.

Un otro razón que me encanta nuestro conversación con Padrón fue su énfasis en educación continuamente. Él lee mucho y dice su casa es como un biblioteca con una cama y una cocina. Con el fin a crear cambio en este mundo, necesita tener la sabiduría de los años pasados.

Esto es lo que aprendí de Leonardo Padrón. Nunca dejar de intentar hacer una diferencia en el mundo y aprender para toda la vida.

Featured

DeKalb Medical Research Report

For my final project in Public Relations Research, myself and seven other team members worked with DeKalb Medical to decern whether or not individuals are motivated to use emergency rooms because they believe they are free. Ultimately, through both qualitative and quantitative research, we concluded that our publics do not believe emergency rooms are free.

However, they also do not totally understand the relative cost implications of using the emergency room for their non-emergent needs compared to seeking care from a primary-care physician. Many choose hospital emergency rooms due to lack of awareness of other service providers that will treat their symptoms and, if applicable, take their insurance.

Our recommendations were two-fold. First, that there should be better patient-facing content commuting the relative cost associated with emergency room care as well as where they can find alternative care. Second, we feel it would be beneficial to offer a patient care locator app. This mobile app would allow individuals to type in symptoms and the best place to seek care.

Our full 138-page report can be found on the link below.

Read Full Report Here

Blog Telenovelas

El Ritmo de Amor

Bailerines en El Caminito, una calle colorida acerca del puerto de Buenos Aires, Argentina en el barrio, La Boca. Frecuentemente El Caminito está llena con música tradicional de tango. // foto: Jay Horton

En este blog post, quiero discutir la música de las telenovelas. Un gran parte de cualquier telenovela es la música. Los programas no serían tan dramáticos, emocionales o de suspenso sin la música. La hace que la audiencia se siente y se preocupa. La hace que la audiencia se relaciona mejor con los personajes.

Cuando yo pienso sobre de la importancia de la música en los programas de televisión yo pienso sobre de la película increible Star Wars y que la manera la escena final parecía durante la filmación. El contraste es severo entre la versión con música y la versión sin música. El primer tiene poder y prestigio; un elemento de pompa y circunstancia. Sin la música, es solo una caminata incómoda. Esta escena demuestra la necesidad y la importancia de música en general a las obras visuales.

Aunque la música de las telenovelas tiene muchas semejanzas a la música de las películas pero hay pocas diferencias. Por ejemplo, en general hay menos canciones en una telenovela. En la telenovela que estoy estudiando, Relaciones Peligrosas por Telemundo, hay dos canciones centrales; la tema, Solo por Amor por Samo, el pop cantante mexicano y una canción sin nombre para las escenas de suspenso. Esta segundo es música incidental.

La canción temática, Solo por Amor, es interesante porque se la utiliza en dos maneras. La primera manera es para un introducción a cada capítulo como la tema de la telenovela. El canción es fantástico porque las letras de la canción describe perfectamente la trama central de la programa Relaciones Peligrosas. Las letras describen la relación del amor entre Miranda, una profesora de La Academia de Cervantes, y su alumno Mauricio, un menor de edad.    

Como dos polos eran nuestros cuerpos

Unidos por la pasión (por la pasión)

Guarde en secreto todo sentimiento

Pero el silencio a veces tiene un precio

Eres tú y soy yo

El rostro de un amor prohibido

Eres tú y soy yo

Amándonos junto al peligro

No me importa lo que venga

Yo estaré contigo”

En cualquier capítulo una persona empieza, incluso si no ha visto ninguno capítulo antes, le puede comprender la trama central de la telenovela, el amor prohibido entre Miranda y Mauricio.  

La segunda manera Solo por Amor está utilizando en la telenovela es cuando la pareja tiene un interacción relacionada remotamente de el amor como una tema de los personajes, Miranda y Mauricio. A veces la canción tiene las palabras, a veces la no tiene palabras, es solo la versión instrumental, pero todavía la es la tema. Cuando escucho esta canción en las escenas, inmediatamente siento que mi pulso acelera y me emociono de que los pájaros de amor se están uniendo. ¡Estoy feliz!

La capacidad de la música de las telenovelas a provocar una respuesta física de su audiencia es increíble. No creo que hubiera tanta la respuesta si no hubiera la música. Simplemente no es posible. Para esta razón, la música es una de las partes más importantes de una telenovela.

Graphic Design

Magnify the Lord

This 11×17 poster was designed for Athens First United Methodist Church for their Sanctuary Choir’s December performance of J.S. Bach’s Magnificat. The artwork was designed in Photoshop, the main text constructed in Illustrator and then the final product was assembled in InDesign.

Featured Writing

What The “Dones” Want More Than Your Skinny Jeans

New Atlanta Church
Prayer flags hung outside of “New Church” United Methodist Church were created by congregants and community members during the Candler Park Fall Festival on Oct. 1, 2016 and Oct. 2, 2016.

ATLANTA – October 19, 2016 – Why does God kill babies? Did God create dinosaurs? Why do people say bad things are part of God’s plan? Why does that corner street preacher say I’m going hell for being born gay? And is the Republican Party really the only “Christian” political party?

All these questions were overheard during a high school youth group. Although they might appear silly at first, these questions from America’s youth disclose the reason many people attend church in the first place; to seek answers to life’s hardest questions. However, churches recent failure to truthfully answer these and other tough questions effectively has caused a mass exodus of many millennials and internet natives from organized religion. These people are known to many in the religious community as the “dones,” individuals so tired or done with church that they eventually choose to leave altogether, but have yet to lose their faith entirely.

“Dones” would be considered a large subcategory of the more frequently researched and discussed “nones,” also known as the religiously non-affiliated. According to a 2015 Pew Research Center article titled, “America’s Changing Religious Landscape,” self-identified, religiously unaffiliated Americans saw a 6.7 percent population increase between 2007 and 2014 while Catholics and mainline Protestant denominations both saw significant decreases. This percentage was even higher when they isolated based on age. The millennial generation alone saw increases as large as 9 percent.

Since this study was published, methods of motivating “nones,” and more specifically “dones” to return to church, have become widely discussed in many religious circles. In the last several years, articles like, “5 Ways Churches Can Reach Millennials” or “10 Reasons Churches Are Not Reaching Millennials,” have become relatively commonplace. Though they lack the specific jargon, one can easily tell they are debating ways to attract and retain the “dones.”

Attention is focused on “dones” because they appear to be more easily motivated to return to church since they already understand church. For a while though, the tactics for luring millennials back were highly superficial. Award-winning Christian blogger and author, Rachel Held Evans, points out in a 2013 blog post, “Why millennials are leaving the church,” “Time and again, the assumption among Christian leaders, and evangelical leaders in particular, is that the key to drawing twenty-somethings back to church is simply to make a few style updates  edgier music, more casual services, a coffee shop in the fellowship hall, a pastor who wears skinny jeans, an updated Web site that includes online giving.”

Yet this has not been proven to be successful. Yes, a church that makes these changes might see an attendance increase for a few Sundays while the younger generation “checks the place out,” but as far as long-term retention, the numbers are still plummeting. This is because most churches fix the façade while never truly getting to the heart of the issue. According to studies done by the Public Religion Research Institute, many young Christians believe the church often misses the nuances and complexities of their faith.

In her most recent novel, “Searching for Sunday: Loving, Leaving, and Finding the Church,” blogger Evans also discusses this concept saying, “We [millennials] don’t want to choose between science and religion or between our intellectual integrity and our faith. Instead, we long for our churches to be safe places to doubt, to ask questions, and to tell the truth, even when it’s uncomfortable. We want to talk about the tough stuff—biblical interpretation, religious pluralism, sexuality, racial reconciliation, and social justice—but without predetermined conclusions or simplistic answers. We want to bring our whole selves through the church doors, without leaving our hearts and minds behind, without wearing a mask.”

Though the majority of church leaders still don’t understand this opinion, a few congregations are emerging as pioneers in this new field of faith. Churches like, House for All Sinners and Saints in Denver or St. Gregory of Nyssa Episcopal Church in San Francisco, Urban Village Church in Chicago or even closer to home “New Church” United Methodist in Atlanta, understand the importance of creating real faith communities at the intersection of an intellectual faith and warm hearts.

Take for example, “New Church” whose mission is just that, to create an authentic, artistic and adventurous Christ community at the intersection of intellectual faith and warm hearts. Like a phoenix, rising from the ashes of two dying, mainstream Methodist congregations in downtown Atlanta, “New Church” was founded at the beginning of this year and is growing its attendance by finding creative ways to have the difficult conversations about faith within their community. They do this by meeting at pizza places, pubs and parks, sharing testimonies about each other’s faith journeys, and always remembering each story is unique.

After attending a service for the first time last Sunday at their building at 1561 McLendon Ave., one congregant, Caroline Finn, 19, said she liked worship there because, “the theology is not focused on tradition, rules and being right or wrong; it is focused on finding and sharing God’s love. You don’t need to have the answers; you don’t need to follow any rules or interpret a passage [of the bible] a certain way. You just need to show up.” She continued by saying, “I think the ‘right and wrong’ rigid belief systems of other churches create in and out groups that can really intimidate and exclude people.” She loved this complete inclusion that “New Church” offered so much that she said she’d be back the next week.

When asked if this broad tone was intentional, co-pastors Anjie and Andy Woodworth, said “Very much so! It’s even in our strategic plan for the church. ‘We will be radically inclusive and will not ‘half-ass the all are welcome’ message. We will be as multi-ethnic as Atlanta, aiming for the diversity of God’s Kingdom.’” They are a come-as-you-are congregation through and through.

Adorned in a rainbow stole, Anjie preached last Sunday about this inclusivity and love to a mix-gendered, intergenerational congregation of about 100 with ethnic profiles from all over the world.

“It was amazing to see their reactions to this stunningly unique, conversational worship.” Andy reflected. “I feel parishioners like it because it’s honest. It never feels like your old dad trying to be hip by wearing skinny jeans to work. It feels like a place where everyone can relax, let their guard down and talk about life as it really is.”

If mainstream denominations really want to change the trajectory of church participation, reconnecting with the ‘dones’ and the millennial generation, research shows this is best way to do it. By hearing and validating people’s questions and understanding they don’t want off-the-cuff answers to life’s biggest questions, the church has the potential grow once again. Spaces for inclusive discernment are key, because who really knows for sure if God created dinosaurs? A discussion could be had!

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“New Church” United Methodist Church was formed in the vital merger between the historic Epworth and Druid Hills congregations in downtown Atlanta. Primarily serving the Candler Park, Druid Hills, Edgewood, Kirkwood, Lake Claire, Virginia-Highlands, and Poncey-Highlands neighborhoods, “New Church” looks to be an community dedicated to serving those who are “done” with the hurtful expressions of church. This authentic, artistic and adventurous parish aims to be radically inclusive creating a multi-ethnic congregation as diverse as God’s Kingdom. “New Church” pairs an intellectual faith with a warm heart celebrating a new way to live life with Jesus Christ. For more information check out newatlantachurch.com.

Graphic Design

You CAN Count On Me!

This was a button design I created for the UGA Student Food Pantry (http://ugapantry.weebly.com/) in September 2016 while serving as a graphic designer and campaign strategist for the UGA Public Relations Student Society of America (PRSSA) Task Force. It was designed in Adobe Photoshop and Illustrator.

Blog Writing

Male Polish

Breaking society’s gender norms one “beauty boy” at a time.

“This 17-year-old male makeup artist is the new face of CoverGirl” the BuzzFeed headline read last Thursday afternoon on Twitter. At first, I was slightly taken aback. What did I just read? I immediately went to CoverGirl’s Twitter page and found the tweet below.

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With it, James Charles a high school senior at Bethlehem Central High School in Bethlehem, New York was announced as the first male brand ambassador of the 55-year-old cosmetics company, CoverGirl.

At this discovery, for some bizarre reason, I felt the need to jump out of my desk at work and run around the office telling my bosses and coworkers all about the news.* In this instance, I don’t think I would have been able to articulate why James’ contoured and freckled face with the purple COVERGIRL text below it made me so happy. However, reflecting on this moment, my elation was most likely an expression of gratitude for the fact that another guy was breaking barriers and being appreciated by mainstream media for being himself rather than conforming society’s rigid gender norms. And to a lesser extent, I was excited because I saw myself in James.

Yes, I know I’m not a teen, award-winning, makeup artist with 745 thousand followers on Instagram, however, I do think I love the glitz and the glam almost as much as the CoverBoy. My sister jokingly calls me Mr. Magpie as I am always attracted to the glitter. Take for example my most recent shoe purchase, these bedazzled Steve Madden slip-ons I found at a consignment store in Northwest Georgia last month for $30. I just couldn’t resist.

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Something else I can’t resist is a relaxing mani-pedi with a girlfriend; a fact I am frequently made fun of for. Most plausibly because instead of opting for the more masculine clear coat the nice Asian ladies try to force upon me, I prefer to boast a bold statement color that matches my current mood. Every time I go through this process in my glorious massage chair, I contemplate why this is a “girls” activity? When did painted faces and decorated nails become feminine? As far as I know, these activities have no correlation to female genitalia and do nothing more than enhance the aesthetic and overall personality of a person.

Much of the disdain for what I’ll call ‘‘beauty boys” in the United States appears to have its roots in conservative Christianity. There have been many articles and books published on this topic in the last year surrounding biblical manhood.

As mentioned in Chandler Epp’s August Religion News Service article, How the Christian ‘masculinity’ movement is ruining men, he discusses how Darrin Patrick’s The Dude’s Guide to Manliness and James MacDonald’s Act Like Men: 40 Days to Biblical Manhood focus solely on necessity for young boys to have military strength and exert dominance at all times in order to fulfill God’s wishes for their manly lives.

However, as Epp points out, “The Christian Bible paints for us a view of manhood that is much more complex than these simple stereotypes allow. For every biblical reference to warriors like Samson or Saul, we read of characters like young David, a harpist, who through no power of his own defeated a giant. We meet Simeon, known for patiently waiting decades to see God’s promise revealed. Jesus himself notably refused to fight back, even giving up his life and physical body in a history-making display of spiritual strength.”

This is a point Nate Pyle seems to also support in his book Man Enough: How Jesus Redefines Manhood. In a 2016 interview with Jonathan Merritt on the feminization of the church, Pyle says, “This is nothing new. In fact, people have been worried about this since before the 19th century.” He even goes as far as to say the obsession with hyper-masculinity in American Christianity is one of the main reasons Donald Trump is so popular this election cycle. “Donald Trump with his promise to ‘make America great again’ sounds like a move back to the good ‘ol days when men were men” and everything was just “locker-room talk.”

These narrow opinions of male gender expression are then continually echoed in the portrayal of men in the media. Magazine covers boast sexually appealing guys with bulging biceps and well-defined chests, rarely giving space to the average twink or full-figured man. Not to mention men with more “feminine” aesthetics; with foundationed faces, highlighted hair and aqua acrylics. I can now understand, to an extent, the plight of women fighting to have short hair and wear pantsuits and still be called women!

Talking about and questioning these gender norms are important for promoting acceptance of different versions of ‘manhood.’ If they so choose, men should have the freedom to wear nail polish and makeup, stigma-free, and without compromising a part of their manhood. Call it Male Polish if it makes feel better, but hinder and be hindered no more my societies tight gender conforms. Remember James, the paint suit and the power of breaking barriers.

*I’m grateful that I work with an inclusive, understanding events team at an amazing institution.