Gina Galvin aspires to enact positive social change through a career in marketing. She believes that the advertising, marketing, and media industries can help break down negative stereotypes by celebrating and prioritizing diversity.
While the coronavirus caused many disruptions to the 2020 spring semester, it also provided Galvin with the unique opportunity to put social impact strategies into practice. Together with ASLMU president, WGST classmate, and best friend Ken Cavanaugh ’20, she organized a series of online workshops with the artist, author, and activist Alok V Menon.
The four-part series ran over the web conference platform Zoom and was open to current students, alumni, faculty, staff, and outside community members. All of the programming recognized the perilous current moment and attempted to lift spirits while helping those who needed it most. The memorable lectures/workshops included “Femme in Public“; “Feelings“; “Beyond the Gender Binary“; and the “Experimental Classroom.”
“I am glad that we were able to create a space for connection, for unity, solidarity, and safety during one of the most universally challenging times,” said Galvin. “Alok guided us through thinking about this moment, allowing ourselves to feel, and inspiring each other to care for one another.”
As a mixed-media artist Alok uses poetry, comedy, performance, lecture, drag, sound-art, fashion design, self-portraiture, and social media to explore themes of gender, race, trauma, belonging, and the human condition. In 2019, they were selected as one of NBC’s Pride 50 and Out Magazine’s OUT 100. Galvin had the idea to reach out to Alok after seeing them express on social media their commitment to using technology to connect, learn, dream, and build during these unprecedented times. It was heartening for Galvin to see how quickly Alok responded and agreed to participate in the enriching event series.
“One of the key takeaways from planning these experiences was realizing that my greatest role models are not as far out of reach as I once imagined,” said Galvin. “It was really eye-opening that Alok was just as excited to plan these events as we were, and it was rewarding all around.”
Galvin’s immediate post-graduate plan is to continue helping her mother’s company, Stellar Snacks, with an initiative to distribute high-quality and healthy snacks to communities and organizations in need. She is also searching for a position at a creative ad agency where she can further cultivate her passion for socially transformative marketing.
“Looking back, I can say that I am especially thankful for the family I found in the WGST Department. My time at LMU has exceeded my expectations,” said Galvin.