BOZEMAN — For the first time, a team of business and graphic design students from Montana State University will compete at the national finals of the National Student Advertising Competition.
The MSU team, comprised of students from the Jake Jabs College of Business and Entrepreneurship and the College of Arts and Architecture, advanced through regional and semifinal competitions to earn the opportunity to compete against seven other finalist teams on Friday, June 8, in Chicago. Other institutions that will be represented at the national finals include Syracuse University, University of Virginia, Columbia College and University of Missouri.
“We are very honored to represent Montana State at the national level of this competition,” said team member Joel Benson, a senior majoring in business marketing. “Performing at this level will show future employers that we as professionals are just as competitive and prepared for the workplace when compared to other students from highly recognized universities.”
Each year, a corporate sponsor provides a case study for the competition reflecting a real-world situation. This year’s sponsor was Ocean Spray. The company challenged student teams to develop a campaign that increased both household market penetration and brand equity among Millennial consumers. Student teams then presented their ideas to a panel of judges consisting of industry communications professionals.
“Not only did (the MSU team) bring creativity and innovation to their solutions, they exhibited a comprehensive understanding of the problem posed by Ocean Spray and provided multiple potential solutions. This type of critical thinking and problem-solving is what employers look for when hiring new talent and shows what our students are capable of,” said Mike Gold, MSU assistant teaching professor and the team’s adviser.
Team member Nick Selden, a senior majoring in business management, said he and the other team members are excited to showcase their efforts in the finals.
“Working with our graphic designers and seeing all of our ideas come to fruition has been amazing,” he said. “Working with a team with different skills has given our class the chance to compete successfully with top schools across the nation.”
Business students participating in the competition include Joel Benson from Bozeman, Chip Carey from Hingham, Massachusetts, Jarett Grimm from Bainbridge, Washington, Michael Kriegel from Wheat Ridge, Colorado, Mathew Lacko from Simsbury, Connecticut, Luke Li from Beijing, Nick Selden from Tacoma, Washington, and Aidan Wade from Helena.
Participating graphic design students include Ariel Baker from Great Falls, Danny Damschen from Plains, Alexa d’Atri from Bozeman, Kree Gullings from Absarokee, Dominique Kintzing from Helena and Jenna Tilleman from Belgrade.