SPRINGFIELD, MA – Why should students choose American International College (AIC), and how is it preparing them for their future?
Those questions were answered by ten AIC students cast to appear in a season nine episode of the TV series, The College Tour. The production is streaming now on AIC’s website and will begin to stream on Amazon Prime on October 9, 2023.
In the program, AIC learners, ranging from first-year undergrads to graduate students, come together to share their personal stories as members of the AIC community, encompassing academics, athletics, campus life, student organizations, and the sense of belonging that AIC cultivates.
The College recently unveiled a new five-year strategic plan, AIC Reimagined. President Hubert Benitez, DDS, PhD, said the insights gained from that process helped direct the subject matter included in the show.
“From the time I arrived at the College one year ago, I knew how special AIC is,” said Benitez. “The College Tour gave us a platform to share who we are as a campus community and an opportunity to showcase the exceptional students we serve. Most importantly, it allowed us to share with the world that regardless of where you come from, race, age, gender, ethnicity, sexual orientation, or socio-economic background, AIC is a place where every single student feels they belong. This sense of belonging does not happen everywhere – it does at AIC”.
The host and executive producer of the TV series is Massachusetts native Alex Boylan, who at twenty-three won the CBS series The Amazing Race and spent the last twenty years as an award-winning onscreen personality and producer. Boylan won an Emmy as a producer of The Steve Harvey Show and was named one of Ed Tech Magazine’s Top 30 IT Higher Education Influencers to Follow in 2022.
“It was great to be back in my home state to visit the beautiful AIC campus,” said Boylan. “This College has a rich heritage and a true spirit of community. We’re thrilled to share these students’ stories with the world.”
The idea to bring The College Tour to AIC came from the College’s Associate Vice President for Marketing and Communications Michael Eriquezzo. He explained his goal was to offer a comprehensive and authentic portrayal of what makes AIC unique. “With the release of our episode, we are excited to give prospective students across the world a first-hand look at the AIC experience from the comfort of their own homes,” said Eriquezzo.
Student cast member Rose McCaffrey of Springfield focused her segment on how well AIC helped her to prepare for her future career. “I am excited for future employers to watch this video showcasing my school and me. It beautifully captures the passion I have for things that I love while displaying my skillset and the transformative impact that AIC has had on my journey,” she said.
At the time of filming, McCaffrey was a triple-major senior, studying political science, public relations, and media communications. Before she graduated in May, McCaffrey had already jumpstarted her career with several internships, including those in the office of Springfield Mayor Dominic Sarno, and the gubernatorial campaign of now-Massachusetts Governor Maura Healey.
McCaffrey and other student cast members wrote their own scripts and memorized them for the shoot. The College Tour crew was on the AIC campus and surrounding areas in Springfield for a week recording the student segments and gathering footage.
Other AIC students from Springfield cast for the program included Arianna James, a junior majoring in Communications and Public Relations, Saniya Stewart, a senior studying Healthcare Management, Isaiah Longs, a senior Psychology major, and Janelis Rodriguez, an Occupational Therapy Doctoral student.
Eriquezzo said the entire experience was a pleasure for students and staff alike. “We couldn’t have asked a better partner than The College Tour to share AIC’s story with the world,” he said. “From casting to filming, the creation of our episode was truly a collaboration. Their professional crew made our students feel like celebrities and worked with our team at every step to ensure this production is a true and vibrant representation of American International College.”
AIC is already sharing the production with current and prospective students and has begun planning an event to showcase the episode to the entire campus community. Eriquezzo said the College is excited to host alumni at a red-carpet premiere during its Homecoming Weekend in September.
Founded in 1885, American International College (AIC) is a private, co-educational, doctoral granting institution located in Springfield, Massachusetts comprising the School of Business, Arts, and Sciences, the School of Health Sciences, and the School of Education. AIC supports and advances education, diversity, and opportunity for its students and the community.