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A group of University of Wisconsin Oshkosh students have something big to be proud of–a team of 14 students recently took fourth in District 8 for the American Advertising Federation’s National Student Advertising Competition.

The team–made up of students from the Strategic Campaigns in Advertising class–was the only team in Wisconsin to compete in this year’s competition. UW Oshkosh was among a competitive district made up of ten schools from Minnesota, South Dakota and North Dakota, said Sara Steffes Hansen, assistant professor in the journalism department at UW Oshkosh.

“This win speaks to the caliber of our students’ strategic, creative and media skills in advertising, so we are very excited and proud of this accomplishment,” Hansen said. “We certainly weren’t the biggest school competing in our district, but we were among the best.”

AAF’S National Student Advertising Competition is the nation’s premier college advertising competition. It provides more than 3,000 college students with “real-world” experience by requiring a strategic advertising/marketing/media campaign for a corporate sponsor.  This year’s client was Mary Kay.

How the competition works: each year, a corporate sponsor provides an assignment or case study outlining the history of its product and current advertising situation. The case study is always candid and reflects a real world situation. Students must research the product and its competition, identify potential problem areas and devise a completely integrated communications campaign for the client. Each student team then “pitches” its campaign to a panel of judges.

“During the process of developing the campaign it was a tremendous amount of work and seemed never-ending,” senior Calli Hoyt said. “It was really worthwhile in the end, though, when we got to see all of our work come together and be rewarded for our accomplishment.”

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