URI assistant business professor Koray Özpolat used his experience serving refugee camps in the Near East for the United Nations to teach his students the vital role of humanitarian logistics and transportation in providing international disaster relief.
He challenged students in his popular operations and supply chain management course to develop public service announcements explaining that monetary donations to proven relief organizations are the smartest way to help people affected by emergencies overseas. The PSAs were entered in a contest sponsored by the Center for International Disaster Information and the U.S. Agency for International Development.
Four students brought home a win. Together undergrads Ryan Pincince ’14, Richard Kalhofer ’12, Jill-Ann Hewins ’13, and Kelsey Finegan ’13 entered two distinctly different PSAs and took second and third place in the print category.
Their second-prize winning entry depicted a dollar bill that stays intact when monetary donations are made and breaks down when item donations are made. The third-place winner showed a bottle of water with a price tag of $71.27, the real cost of a donated case of water bottles after shipping, handling, and storage.
Entries were judged based on overall impact, originality, memorable content, delivery, and clear and concise messages. “This year’s contestants met the challenge with compelling and clever entries,” said CIDI Director Juanita M. Riling. “Explaining to the public what smart compassion involves can be a challenge, but the winners clearly articulate the difference between good intentions and maximizing public generosity to help people affected by disasters.”