Communication Studies News

Jennifer Arline Presents Research at Symposium

April 17, 2009
Study looks at image public relations for oil giant Exxon Mobil.

Jennifer Arline ’09 presented, “Exxon’s Image: Altered by Disaster” at Randolph College’s Symposium for Artists & Scholars on April 17, 2009.

Jennifer conducted the research project with her faculty mentor, Jennifer Gauthier, associate professor of communication studies, while an undergraduate student at Randolph College.

An abstract of research project follows...

Although Exxon Mobil began efforts immediately after the Exxon Valdez oil disaster in March of 1989 to keep the disaster from ruining the company’s reputation, the Exxon Valdez oil spill continues to affect Alaskan ecosystems and populations and therefore to haunt the corporation’s public relations. In debt and still facing environmental consequences, the impacted Alaskan communities continue to make it difficult for this global giant to cover up its past indiscretions. Faced with changes in public opinion and a shifting cultural atmosphere with regard to environmental standards, the corporation has altered its image primarily through advertising. Studying current commercials, as well as those from before and just after the spill, demonstrates how Exxon Mobil has created a consumer-friendly image.

The Student Symposium of Artists and Scholars provides Randolph College students from all classes and disciplines the opportunity to present the results of their research, scholarship, and creative work to the entire College community and beyond.

The two-day symposium, modeled after a typical academic conference, features oral presentations of student research, readings of creative work, musical performances, and exhibitions of student artwork. The symposium also includes a poster session, reception and a keynote address from a noteworthy academic speaker.

Learn more at www.randolphcollege.edu/sas

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