Newhouse students win 2009 National Student Advertising Competition with ‘The Stupid Drink’ campaign against binge drinking
Newhouse students win 2009 National Student Advertising Competition with ‘The Stupid Drink’ campaign against binge drinkingJune 09, 2009Jaime Winne Alvarez firstname.lastname@example.org
A team of five students from Syracuse University’s S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications placed first out of more than 140 institutions of higher education at the 2009 National Student Advertising Competition (NSAC). The team’s winning campaign, “The Stupid Drink,” targeted binge drinking among college students.
The team is composed of May 2009 graduates Erica Bruno of New York City (formerly of Shaker Heights, Ohio); Peter Ceran of Long Valley, N.J.; Gregory Rozmus of Northport, N.Y.; Paul Savaiano of New York City (formerly of Glen Ellyn, Ill.); and Maria Sinopoli of Boston (formerly of Manlius, N.Y.). Faculty advisor is Ed Russell, assistant professor of advertising at the Newhouse School.
According to Russell, “The Stupid Drink” refers to “that drink between in control and out of control, the drink where judgment deteriorates and consumption accelerates.” The idea of the campaign is to try and speed the learning process about safe and responsible drinking by helping students identify and name their “Stupid Drink.” It might be a number, a type of liquor or a feeling they get when they are about to go too far.
“Well over 100 students came together to help us win this competition. We had terrific research, an amazing strategy and fabulous creative. It was a tremendous amount of work, but well worth it,” says Sinopoli, who served as the team’s account management director.
Administered by the American Advertising Federation (AAF), the NSAC is the nation’s premiere student advertising competition. Each year, students create a campaign based on a case study for the competition’s sponsor. This year’s sponsor was The Century Council, a national not-for-profit organization funded by distillers dedicated to fighting drunk driving and underage drinking. This year’s competition was the first time that teams were asked to address a social issue to promote a positive behavioral change-the prevention of dangerous over consumption of alcohol among college students, also known as “binge drinking.”
The Newhouse team was one of 18 to make it to the final round of the competition, where the members presented to executives representing The Century Council; the Advertising Council, a nonprofit organization that marshals pro-bono resources of the advertising and media industries to create public service campaigns; and the American Council on Education (ACE), the major coordinating body for all of the nation’s institutions of higher education. Both the Ad Council and ACE assisted The Century Council in developing the competition’s case study.
Final round presentations were made Thursday, June, 4, and Friday, June 5, followed by the award presentation at a luncheon Friday afternoon.
“My congratulations go out to Syracuse University,” says Ralph Blackman, president and CEO of The Century Council. “We were consistently impressed by the enthusiasm and creativity that all of the competitors brought to the competition. The NSAC enabled us to see what some of the best students in academic marketing programs believe will be an effective communications campaign to persuade their peers to stop engaging in the dangerous over consumption of alcohol. We will continue to combat this critical social problem using the creative tools and the lessons we have learned in this competition.”
The American Advertising Federation (AAF), headquartered in Washington, D.C., is the oldest national advertising trade association, representing 40,000 professionals in the advertising industry, with a national network of 200 ad clubs located in communities across the country. Through its 214 college chapters, the AAF provides 7,500 advertising students with real-world case studies and recruitment connections to corporate America. For more information, visit http://www.aaf.org.