BICsters are READI to Take on Breast Cancer

1/08/2021 Unknown 0 Comments

It was a challenging semester with a life-changing project. But the BIC Class of 2021 was READI. 

On Thursday, December 16, 2020, BICsters pitched four integrated marketing communications campaigns as part of BIC's non-profit capstone partnership with Memorial Sloan Kettering and CCNY in their research collaboration Redressing Access to and Disparities in Immunotherapy for Breast Cancer (READI).  With the guidance of Professor Katina Scott and Brianna Bishop, teams were tasked to create awareness about triple-negative breast cancer (TNBC) and immunotherapy as a treatment option for Hispanic and Black women while empowering this community to advocate for better healthcare for themselves. 
Divided into four interdisciplinary teams, BICsters from each track utilized a cross-disciplinary approach to create distinctive integrated marketing communications campaigns based on a client briefing delivered by Devika Jutagir, Postdoctoral Research Fellow at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center and Adriana Espinosa, Assistant Professor of Psychology at CCNY's Colin Powell School back at the beginning of the Fall semester. Devika and Adriana returned as judges to award three winners: Best Campaign Targeting Hispanic Women, Best Campaign Targeting Black Women, and Best Overall Campaign.

Revolution8 kicked off the client pitch with its "Mi Vida Can TNBC" campaign targeting Hispanic women. Its research yielded the insight that for Hispanic families, health is a family affair and that while Hispanic moms are some of their children's best teachers, they don't appreciate the value of their own health when taking care of their family. The team's answer: Be a better role model for your children by putting your breast health first. This message was delivered in the form of a telenovela which allowed a complicated and clinical story to play out in dramatic and heartfelt ways, leveraging the telenovela's central role in Hispanic family culture. 

Studio 4 also targeted Hispanic women in their poignant “Love Gives You Strength” campaign. The team's research revealed barriers for women that included cultural disparities, language challenges, lack of insurance coverage, migratory status, lack of awareness, disinformation, and lack of information. To Studio 4, these challenges seemed so insurmountable that they could only be overcome by love. Therefore, its campaign focused on love's ability to vanquish fear and fuel a more actionable relationship between patient and doctor in the fight against TNBC.  

Targeting Black women, Nexus developed its “Your Voice. Your Breast. Your Story” campaign to encourage more honest conversations around breast issues and breast health. According to Nexus research, societal taboos that prevent Black women from discussing their bodies have resulted in a complicated relationship with their breast health. This "breast-forward" campaign used bold imagery and language to trigger a more effective patient-doctor relationship. The team introduced a Breast Awareness Profile (seen below) as a power tool to make the conversation unavoidable and productive.  

The Fore also focused on empowering Black women with its campaign “When you do for you, you do for her, too.” Team research pushed them to channel the powerful force Black women are in society and turn it inward, but to do so without coming across as selfish. The campaign succeeded by connecting self-care to community building: When you do for you, you do for her, too. In other words, by getting screened for TNBC, you can help improve the outcomes of the lives of other Black women. 

Each group presented for 30 minutes to their peers, audience members, and judges Devika and Adriana. In the end, the client could only pick three winners: The Fore for both Best Overall Campaign and Best Campaign Targeting Black Women. Studio 4 won for Best Campaign Targeting Hispanic Women. 

After the winners were announced, Adriana remarked, "it's all impressive and energizing. All four teams obviously took this project very seriously and we really appreciate all the effort you put in and how you came at this assignment from different angles. All amazing." Likewise, Devika noted how "a lot of the research resonated with us. We will be integrating many campaign elements into our outreach."  Katina echoed the clients' feedback, ending the evening by saying how proud she was of her students' “tenacity, passion for their ideas, focus, and real determination to get it right especially when I push back.” 

The Non Profit Capstone is not only a signature requirement of the BIC program, but pivotal to next semester's Corporate Capstone taught by BIC Program Director and Professor Nancy R. Tag each Spring. Nancy, who was in attendance, remarked “I cant wait to work with these teams next semester! Each one of you did really powerful work that will truly make a difference in this world.”

Past non-profit capstone clients have included CUNY Arts, Sandy Hook Promise, The Grove School of Engineering, Columbia Children’s Health, The Colin Powell School for Civic and Global Leadership, and the UJA.