Originally written for The University of Alabama Press’s blog.
What comes to mind when you think of the university press? Classical literature? Plaid-clad professors? Certainly not marketing, right? Well, despite this disassociation, The University of Alabama Press’s marketing department is where I spent several hours a week this semester as a marketing intern. ‘Why?’ you ask? Well, as a senior marketing student I have a passion for southern studies and keen appreciation of Alabama’s integral role in this nation’s history.
Juan William’s foreword in Frye Gaillard’s “Alabama’s Civil Rights Trail: An Illustrated Guide to The Cradle of Freedom” delineates my sentiments. “It is mind boggling that there is so much American history concentrated in any one place, but it is in Alabama,” Williams wrote.
Since 1945, in addition to its other offerings, The University of Alabama Press has published books of a decidedly Alabama and southern pedigree in order to foster the understanding of history and culture in the state and region.
As an intern at the Press, I’ve enjoyed using the marketing and public relations tools and strategies I’ve learned while a student to promote such books. Furthermore, the internship has offered an opportunity to learn. Learn how to draft catalog copy, review slips and back-ad copies. Learn about Birmingham’s rich jazz history, life in Cuba’s Old Havana district, the deplorable conditions of Civil War prisons and pioneers in early black baseball. Without a doubt the internship has been one of the most enriching experiences of my collegiate career.
Next time you’re looking for a good read consider any one of 1400 titles the Press has published to date. Chances are I helped promote a few.