​South By Sea: Helping Gettysburg Students Make Waves in the Marketing Industry

By Heather Wirick, Staff Writer

​Extracurriculars at Gettysburg College give students the chance to network and engage in marketing and managerial experience early on in their careers. South By Sea gained some traction when it was first introduced to the campus six years ago. However, it became more popular in 2023 when Kayla Macdonald ’24 was recruited as a Campus Manager via networking on LinkedIn.

​South By Sea is an apparel design company that specializes in customized designs for Greek Organizations, as well as other student groups, local businesses and more. They have established relations with schools across the nation by recruiting Campus Managers, such as Kayla Macdonald ’24, Julia Topatzes ’24, Ella Seaman ’25 and Kylie Keller ’26. 

“At South By Sea, my role involves digital marketing and advertising our products, as well as establishing and maintaining relationships with groups on campus…through event tracking, graphic design, and connections with student organizations, I keep our brand prominent and current on campus,” Macdonald shared. 

Macdonald was drawn to South By Sea when seeking opportunities in marketing and advertising, which would fill the gap in advertising courses offered at Gettysburg.

Family Weekend shirts that were sold in October 2023. (Photo Courtesy of the South by Sea Instagram Account)

​Whether the designs are being made for Greek Philanthropy events, campus events such as Parents Weekend and Senior Week or “bar crawl” apparel highlighting local establishments—one of Macdonald’s personal favorite designs—the South By Sea staff at Gettysburg work to foster relationships with their clients, using a personalized approach to bring their ideas to life.

​“The order process begins with an initial consultation where we discuss design preferences, quantity, budget, and timeline. Our design team collaborates closely with the client to create custom designs aligned with their vision,” Macdonald said when asked about the order process and working with clients.

A Campus Manager will correspond with the customer, hosting individual consultations where the staff works with the client to create a vision. Designs are curated from a variety of different sources, such as Pinterest, Canva and inspiration from the national design team. Campus representatives draw from a mix of classic and trending designs, while factoring in the client’s wishes and other personal aesthetics. 

Macdonald explained, “Our goal is to provide an efficient and seamless ordering experience, delivering high-quality custom apparel that exceeds expectations!” 

Final details, such as quantity, quotes and delivery are then managed between the client and campus representative. South By Sea’s Design Team at Gettysburg remains dedicated to fostering good relationships with their clients, figuring out what they would like to see in their merchandise.

​South By Sea’s presence at Gettysburg College allows students to engage in all aspects of marketing, design and advertising outside of the classroom. 

The company helps students work on their networking skills by externally recruiting Campus Managers and teaching them how to foster relationships with the greater campus community. Students can engage in their artistic endeavors by working with clients to create designs while simultaneously corresponding with the Nationals to handle the order and delivery processes. Additionally, it gives students an opportunity to engage in their media and advertising skills with the upkeep of @southbysea.gettysburg on Instagram.

 “Overall, working for South by Sea has been a rewarding experience that has supplemented my academic and career interests, providing me with valuable skills and opportunities for personal and professional growth,” Macdonald said when asked about her overall experience with the company. 

Organizations looking to order merchandise from South By Sea can reach out to any of the current Campus Managers.

This article originally appeared on page 22 of the No. 2 April 2024 edition of The Gettysburgian’s magazine.

Author: Gettysburgian Staff

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