Soon IPR students will be able to show their school pride in colors other than black, thanks to the students in Scott Nelson’s Marketing and Branding class. Through an applied learning project that spanned the past three quarters, students have researched, designed and are now poised to sell brand new IPR T-shirts, hoodies, hats and sweatpants.IPR student Kelsey Geiger
“It’s exciting to see new gear,” says Nelson. “And when we can team up (the marketing class) with the Event Production class and the accounting class to handle all the details, that’s the home run.”
Students in Nelson’s class began this project three quarters ago, inspired to pump up IPR’s Music & Entertainment Business program. After extensive market research, they developed the slogan, “IPR Means Business!” They chose the colors that research showed students wanted, they determined where to have the products made, and they calculated all costs involved, Nelson says. Finally, they put together a presentation that they gave to the school’s owners — a pitch that was so good, “you couldn’t figure out how to turn it down,” Nelson says.
The next challenge was figuring out how to deal with money that would be coming in. To solve this problem, the class set up a PayPal business account and ordered two PayPal Here credit card readers, which attach to the students’ iPads. Any student in the class, plus Nelson and the student accounts office, can now take a credit card, ring up a purchase, and retrieve the item from a locked cabinet.
Buying IPR merchandise has never been easier — and the best part is students are in charge and learning hands-on the skills they’ll need once they become music and entertainment business professionals.
“My ultimate hope is that the students take over selling the merchandise — completely,” Nelson says, “and it becomes a self-sustaining project.”