MKT 425: CALS and Eller Students Collaborate to Promote Historic Racetrack

Friday, February 9, 2018
Some of the students in the course pose for a photo.

For the spring semester, Eller College of Management and CALS have collaborated to create an opportunity for CALS students to participate in the marketing 425 class—normally closed to any students not in the Eller college. These students are a part of the Racetrack Industry Program (RTIP), which is within the School of Animal and Comparative Biomedical Sciences (ACBS). Through the course, our students have the chance to learn how to manage and develop effective advertising strategies and communications; identify the needs of a market; navigate message creation and media selection; and measure results from analytics. This experience, for one CALS student, has been a priceless one. She encourages other departments and colleges to collaborate in the future:

“[Dr. Ackerley] encouraged me to join and I was pretty nervous about it but, honestly, this is probably one of the best classes I’ve had for an 8am,” says Patricia Scholle, an Animal Science major and student of the RTIP program. “I love the involvement that CALS has with Eller and I would definitely encourage other classes in the future to do that as well.”

Students in the course are working on a project with the Rillito Racetrack—a hidden, historic gem of Tucson that’s celebrating its 75th anniversary after fighting to stay open in 2017. Their celebration, a Diamond Jubilee, consists of three weekend’s worth of fun starting this Saturday, Feb. 10. It even includes UA Days at the track: a unique weekend where students can attend for free, with their CatCard, on Feb. 24 and 25. Eller and CALS students in the course will conduct their own small activity on the track as another way to show their support for Rillito Park. To promote this event and the Rillito Park, students put on a “Promotion with Commotion” yesterday, Feb. 8, on the UA Mall to promote Rillito Park while informing passers-by of its existence, anniversary, and up-coming events:

“Rillito Racetrack reached out to us at the beginning of the semester, telling us that they felt like students just had no idea that the track even existed and I found out that that was true,” says AJ Homayounfar, a student in the Eller college. “Eight out of ten people don’t even know that Tucson has a racetrack. We decided to put on this event and develop a marketing campaign to raise awareness from students, especially international students, about Rillito’s history and its connection to Tucson.”

This new collaboration has brought two colleges with students from different backgrounds and interests within the UA community together, allowing their students to do something great not only for themselves, but for the Tucson community as well. Moving forward, CALS plans to look for collaboration opportunities again to foster this kind of teamwork, responsibility, enthusiasm, and dedication from students in CALS and beyond. To learn more, or if you have any questions, contact Dr. Edward Ackerley. View the interview with our CALS student below. 


Dr. Edward Ackerley
Adjunct Instructor, Marketing