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Public relations students work to engage baseball fans as MLB rules change

Two students, with baseball caps on, stand with their public relations professor in a classroom

Nikolas Pomerantz (left) and Miliana Adams (right) are students in Don Ingle’s Fox Sports University class, where they’re developing pitches to engage and sustain fans of the show “MLB on Fox.” Pomerantz is a junior public relations and advertising major, and Adams a graduating senior. (Courtesy of Don Ingle)
As Major League Baseball makes big changes to the game to quicken the pace and increase the action, DePaul's College of Communication public relations and advertising students are on the forefront of fan engagement.

Teams of students in DePaul's Fox Sports University class are developing pitches to engage and sustain fans of the show "MLB on Fox." This has been an exciting opportunity, particularly as Fox Sports brings on baseball Hall of Famer Derek Jeter as a host, says Don Ingle, the professional lecturer who teaches the course.

"Fox Sports is bringing on Jeter at a time when all the rules have changed in Major League Baseball, which is much more exciting than it's been in the last 20 years," Ingle says.

Ingle created the class assignment with Fox Sports University, which connects a select group of universities with Fox Sports Media Group to give students opportunities to develop strategic solutions for its various business units. Fox Sports executives will fly to Chicago on June 6 to evaluate students' pitches and choose a winning team.

Why is this experience important for DePaul students?

"The assignment couldn't be more real world, number one," Ingle says. "Number two is the competition. And number three is teamwork. They'll spend more than half of their time working in a team vs. sitting at a computer typing."

Nikolas Pomerantz, a junior public relations and advertising major, sees the course as a chance to gain real-world experience before he starts an internship with the Yankee Entertainment and Sports Network this summer. "It's amazing because I can use those tools for this summer and in the future," he says.

FOX Sports executives visited the course via Zoom at the midpoint to give students feedback on their pitches. "To hear advice from professionals in the field that you want to get into is really important to me," Pomerantz says. "It shows you a career path and a future that you can image yourself in, which is really promising and exciting."

Miliana Adams, a graduating senior who will intern with MLB this summer, says working in teams is her favorite aspect of the campaigns course. "We've had a lot of creative freedom over the past few weeks. Don has been facilitating but not getting too involved to tell us exactly what to do," she says.

Former DePaul and Fox Sports University student Emma Nye also visited the course as a guest speaker. Nye is the manager for digital content for the Chicago Cubs. "She talked to us about the Cubs' social media strategies," Adams says. "Just seeing fellow DePaul grads and what they've done after being in our class is really cool."

As Adams heads to her internship in a few weeks, it's clear that the campaigns course and partnership with Fox Sports University made a major impact on her educational experience.

"This class has been a top three highlight of my time here at DePaul," she says.

Learn more about the Public Relations and Advertising Program at DePaul.