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Congratulations to Hawaii Pacific University!

Winners of AAF District 13's 2014 National Student Advertising Competition who represented Hawaii in the National Semi Finals, placing 9th out of 16 teams.

Hawaii Pacific University (HPU) advertising students won the American Advertising Federation (AAF) District 13 National Student Advertising Competition (NSAC) on Saturday, April 12, 2014 defeating Chaminade University of Honolulu.

Students enrolled in the university’s strategic communication program created a $10 million advertising campaign for the Mary Kay cosmetic company.

"NSAC is a rigorous program that challenges advertising students' critical thinking abilities and creativity,” said HPU instructor and faculty advisor, AnnMarie Manzulli. “It's an ideal project to build curriculum around."

In early May 2014, HPU competed against other AAF district winners across the nation. They came in 9th place. The top eight teams were invited to Boca Raton, Florida for the winning title of NSAC 2014. This is HPU’s third consecutive year as district champions.

“Taking part in NSAC is one of the best experiences I have had at HPU,” said Kawena Carvalho-Mattos, HPU senior studying communication. “It’s innovative programs like NSAC that make HPU stand out from other universities and inspires me as a student. I am proud of our team and hope we do well in the next round.”

The National Student Advertising Competition, held by the American Advertising Federation, is an annual nationwide competition for undergraduate students from more than 150 colleges and universities. The AAF Education Services department and the AAF Academic Division, a group of advertising educators and practitioners from across the country, oversee the policies and procedures and govern the competition.

AAF District 13 and AAF-Hawaii are proud to be part of this program.

How the NSAC 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. Regional NSAC competitions are held each spring in 15 districts throughout the U.S. The winning team in each district and one wild card team then advances to compete on the national level at the AAF National Conference in June.

The Structure of the NSAC Competitions

The AAF is divided into 15 districts, each containing one to five states. Each district holds a competition in April and the winning team advances to the national finals which are held during the annual AAF National Conference in June. Judging is conducted by professionals in the communications industry. Judges at the national level are selected from the client and their advertising agencies. Yearly, some districts will have as many as 18 teams competing and nationwide more than 150 colleges and universities take on the NSAC challenge.

There is no better way to learn about the advertising campaign process than by actually developing a campaign for a real client. The competition is governed by the Education Services division and the AAF Academic Committee, a group of advertising educators and practitioners from across the country, who oversee the policies and procedures of the competitions. These members ensure that there is a level playing field and that the competition demonstrates the highest academic and professional standards.

For more information, visit the national website, aaf.org, or contact District 13 Coordinator Paul Lam at paull@servco.com

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