back to news July 21, 2016

Strategic Communication Student Helps Shape the Narrative of Columbus for the Upcoming Election Season

Rachel Gaylord, a third-year strategic communication student from Brunswick, Ohio, has put the skills she’s learned in the classroom out into the city of Columbus. She started interning for Experience Columbus in May to assist with the logistics behind its newest initiative, the mobile media lounge.

“My workdays at Experience Columbus are definitely dynamic, and I’m gaining real world experience,” Gaylord explained.

She is passionate about the mobile media lounge project, which is a 23-foot Airstream trailer that is going to facilitate interactions with national media during the upcoming election season.

Since the Republican National Convention is being held in Cleveland, Columbus is expecting an influx of traffic from political journalists and pundits. In 2012, there were more than 70 presidential and vice presidential events in Columbus. This year, the mobile media lounge will make an appearance at events to help shape the narrative of Columbus. Gaylord explained the Airstream trailer will be a resource to media who follow candidates to provide them with information, images and story ideas that highlight the city. The mobile media lounge is a collaborative project between Experience Columbus, Columbus College of Art and Design and Ricart Automotive. The wrap design was inspired by Experience Columbus' LIFEINCBUS image awareness campaign. 


Designed by CCAD grad, Lauren Rassenfoss


Gaylord’s main responsibilities for the project include working to secure the proper permits and permissions related to parking the media lounge, communicating with contacts who are aware of when candidates will visit Columbus, overseeing partnerships with community vendors and assembling the resources that Experience Columbus will provide the national media. The lounge will be stocked with local Columbus treats and "hot cards" that include key information about the city.

“Columbus is a creative, open and collaborative city, and I’m excited to show the national media all the city has to offer,” Gaylord said.

She recently became a Certified Tourism Ambassador for Columbus, and she believes Ohio State students have a leg up because they’re living in a college town surrounded by a city that has so much to offer. She also is thankful for the amount she has learned in her communication classes because it has made her feel confident in her abilities at her internship.

“Being a communication major provides a wide variety of opportunity. I want to get in the field and experience as much as I can.”

By Samantha Ruwe, ASC Communications Student