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Students work with Reading Public Library on marketing plan

front steps of the Reading Public Library
Reading Public Library

This semester, Penn State Berks students have had some real-world marketing experience, working with the Reading Public Library on creating a new marketing plan to help the nonprofit organization meet the evolving needs of its customers. Students will present their work to college administrators, selected faculty, and representatives from the Reading Public Library on Monday, December 16, 2013, at 1 p.m. in room 244 of the Gaige Technology and Business Innovation Building.

It all started when Jim Shankweiler, Lecturer in Business Administration, was looking for ideas for his Project Management course, and he was invited to a ribbon-cutting ceremony for the Reading Public Library’s “popUP Library,” a 7,000-square-foot facility on Penn Street in Reading, which was serving its customers while the library’s main location on 5th Street in Reading was closed for renovations for four months.

Shankweiler met with Kate Thornton, Marketing Director for the Reading Public Library, and together they decided to present the marketing plan as an assignment to his Project Management course. Thornton visited the class in the beginning of the semester and spoke with them about the library’s mission and goals.

The class, which is composed of two sections and thirty students, worked throughout the fall semester to redefine the role of the library and how it can best serve its customers in this digital information age. They worked in teams to develop three or four proposals, which they will present to the library’s board of directors.

In addition to the work being done by the Project Management class, another class has been working on research relating to the marketing plan.

For more information about the students working with the Reading Public Library, contact Shankweiler at 610-396-6327 or via e-mail at JPS23@psu.edu.

 

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