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Colleges Create Offbeat Videos to Try to Build Web Buzz

These days colleges’ PR offices are creating more and more videos to promote campus events and get their institution’s name out. And some have tried to adopt the lighthearted or edgy tone that seems most popular on YouTube.

The collegewebeditor blog has been tracking such efforts, and today they point out an unusual holiday video created by the University of Maryland at College Park.

Connie Chung, an alumnus of the university, makes a cameo appearance, but the star is the college’s mascot, Testudo, leading students and staff members from across campus to gather for a holiday photo. The overall feel seems something out of a Disney film, and somehow it seems long, even though it’s only two minutes. It’s too soon to tell whether it will be the next big viral video — so far the version on YouTube has only been viewed a couple hundred times.

Last month, the blog featured a roundup of quirky promotional videos featuring college presidents, highlighting various presidents jumping out of planes, answering questions on a late-night TV show, or riding a motorcycle. None of those have been blockbusters either, though.

Know of a similarly offbeat university video? Please let us know about it in the comments section. —Jeffrey R. Young

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