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Eastern Kentucky University students from the Corbin regional campus are assisting the Main Street program in Wayland, Kentucky. Public relations students in Melissa Newman’s Design for Mass Media class are designing a website, brochure and logo for the Floyd County community.

Newman, a regional stewardship coordinator and communication instructor at EKU, often involves service learning projects in her courses.

“I believe that real hands-on student projects like these enhance my course curriculum and allow me to go beyond the traditional classroom tasks to introduce students to needs in our region,” Newman said. “The students learn the course materials while also serving a need. The bonus is that students will leave the class with portfolio items that are actually being utilized by Wayland Main Street.”

The Main Street program is a state and federal program that helps communities beautify and revitalize their downtown and commercial districts. As funding for the project is small, Wayland Main Street Director Tyann Hansford contacted Ryan Watts, a community outreach coordinator at EKU.

Watts matches EKU services with needs in communities throughout the University’s 22-county service region and informed Hansford about Newman’s web design class. Hansford then met with the class and presented her ideas for the program.

Watts says service projects like this one benefit the students as well as the community by giving students the opportunity to apply skills learned in the classroom to real-world situations, improving the quality of life for everyone involved.

“It is wonderful that these students could be of service,” Hansford said. “Had it not been for EKU, we would never have a website.”

Newman’s class will present the designs to Hansford on Tuesday, May 3, at 12:30 p.m. at the Wayland Community Center. The presentation is open to the public.