AAF Members Learn from Professor Duff in Resume Workshop

AAF Members Learn from Professor Duff in Resume Workshop

AAF Members Learn from Professor Duff in Resume Workshop
By Jamie Kong

On Monday, November 14th, American Advertising Federation at Illinois welcomed Professor Brittany Duff to learn about resume building in the advertising industry in their annual Resume Workshop held by the RSVP committee. This is a crucial step in earning experiences as account executives, account managers, art directors, copywriters and applying for advertising agencies.

Duff served as a mentor and provided extensive details on not only building a resume, but also gave additional tips to stand out from the clutter and to mimic the train of thoughts in agencies. AAF members were able to voice their concerns and questions throughout the whole workshop.

To begin with, Duff discussed about how resumes alters the perception of a person’s characteristics and how it determines the first impression on their professionalism and work-ethic.

In regards with the design of the resume, she emphasized the importance of standing out from the clutter. She furthered her explanation on creating visual resumes and creating infographics to distinct yourself from others. Students were encouraged to be storytellers and to be innovative. 

“Why treat yourself differently than you would treat a brand?” she said Duff.

In addition, she suggested students to “think like the agency.” Reciprocal liking is considered to be one of the main factors in building a resume. Duff stressed the importance of mirroring key words and ideas that matters to the company, yet to also be subtle.

At the end of the workshop, she gave several pieces of advice in regards of preparing for an interview. She reminded us to be prepared for the unexpected, to conduct research on the agencies and to remember passion is the key to success. Duff reassured students to stay positive regardless of the results. 

“It’s advertising! Almost every experience is relevant! Advertising is all about framing,” Duff concluded.

What Virtual Reality Console Will You Be Looking At?

What Virtual Reality Console Will You Be Looking At?

By Evan Cassani

The holiday season is coming up, along with the annual hype of the new generation of gaming. This year, we are expecting Microsoft and Sony to come out with newly evolved versions of their consoles. The XBox One will become the XBox Scorpio, and the PlayStation 4 will become the PlayStation Pro.

You may be asking, what has been added this time around? This is just what the companies are advertising ever so strategically – virtual reality.

Virtual reality is a new technology that allows submersion into the gaming world. A headset blocks out the world and replaces it with an HD screen that bends to the face, allowing the movements of the head and body to register in the virtual world. 

Three years ago, the last generation systems were released with a huge impact on the public. During this time, motion sensors without a controller (such as Kinect) were the “big thing,” which they advertised this to be the “new age” of gaming.

It is happening yet again. Virtual reality (VR) and augmented (AR) reality games have taken the gaming scene by storm.  Sony recently released a virtual reality headset for their current system, which also advertises the technological boundaries that they are achieving. They want to showcase the future of gaming consoles, which will be featured in their new console, the Pro.

Microsoft is not far behind. Their new system ensures VR compatibility but has yet to develop a VR headset. Microsoft is rumored to be partnering with Oculus Rift, a virtual reality headset developer.

It will be interesting to see how the companies advertise the partnership between the major powerhouses of Microsoft and Oculus Rift. It will also be interesting to see if Microsoft buys out Oculus Rift in order to get full credit. Microsoft has not only been a stand-alone company, but even more so, a stand-above company. History shows that they try their best to exclude credit to everyone but their own brand name. To buy out Oculus Rift would be a powerful move that would work in their favor – if they can manage the transition.

Currently, Oculus Rift is setting the price for its products pretty high. The Oculus Rift headset and touch pad together will cost more than $800. Buying the headset alone will cost around $600.

Maybe to some, the price is fulfilling of Oculus Rift’s slogan of  “[reaching] out and [touching] the future.” Through personal perspective, the price is a little high for the products at the moment. 

As for PlayStation, Sony has priced their headset to be about $400. It will be interesting to observe whether this strategy is smart, and whether they get better sales in the “console wars” during the holiday season. As the past has shown, Sony and their cheap prices during an initial release is eye-catching, but the raw power of the XBox alone may win over many people this season.  

Both companies’ goals have always been to accommodate the gamer. This includes the hardware, software, controller feel, console look, as well as the reputation of the company.

For me, it has always been about the games, and Sony is really making it clear that their console has something for all. Their exclusive PlayStation 4 games are rapidly gaining attention and their exclusive franchise is continuously growing.

Maybe it’s time for me to switch over to the Sony life. However, it is important to consider all these factors in order to decide if this is the new age of gaming and to choose which console fits best.

But all in all, this should turn out to be another great season for gamers.

Why People Should Care About “Big Data”

Why People Should Care About “Big Data”

By Sam Spatara

As social media continues to expand its influence in our daily lives, so too is the role of “Big Data” and analytics expanding in the world of marketing and PR. While this buzzword has appeared frequently in the media as of late, many do not fully comprehend what it is, or why they should care.

One of the main reasons everyone should care about Big Data is being used to target individuals, not just large demographics. Furthermore, this allows PR practitioners to better understand who that individual is, what their interests are, and what messages they might respond best to.

As the article from Prime Research notes, “through strategy development, Big Data enables more direct targeting and more salient messaging based on proven concepts developed by tracking which messages work and don’t work on the target audience in driving business results. With this knowledge, organizations can invest in those actions which are most likely to achieve the most beneficial outcome.”

Big Data is revolutionary in terms of how businesses can track individuals and their preferences, making it easier to develop messages that are relevant and useful to a specific audience. While this practice may seem like an invasion of privacy to some, this can make it easier for businesses to communicate with their audience in a way that will yield more positive responses, such as improving customer satisfaction.

An article by Cision states that businesses can more easily respond to unhappy customers on social media, and therefore can improve customer relations going forward by utilizing Big Data: “if you have a negative mention on social media, respond immediately to diffuse the situation, remedy it and turn a disgruntled customer into a happy one.”

Most new technologies and tools introduced today have disruptive effects on their respective industries, and Big Data is no different. Thus, it is imperative that we continue to learn how to use this system responsibly and effectively, both today and in the future. 

AAF Reflects on Insight + Interaction Conference

AAF Reflects on Insight + Interaction Conference

By Luis Vargas

Very rarely does it feel like we, as students, get an opportunity to take a peek within the dynamics of the advertising industry. Yes, we have clubs and internships that help pave our understanding of promotion and hone our skills in messaging. However, a sense of urgency and energy are lost as we are exposed to the morphing reality of advertising – through news articles, blog posts and podcasts. Nevertheless, when given the opportunity to pull back the curtain, the spirit of the industry can come alive and inspire.

Few of us fortunate students were given the opportunity to learn at AAF’s 2016 Insight + Interaction Conference held in the Windy City. This conference drew together advertising hopefuls from across the nation, furthering exposure to the industry through agency visits and lectures from seasoned professionals. Students traveling up from Urbana-Champaign were welcomed by Schafer Condon Carter: the agency of record for native Giordano’s and the beloved Chicago Cubs. In addition to experiencing the lively bustle of the city and exploring the amenities of the industry, students gained an inside perspective on the strategy of large scale campaigns. Overall, this enabled students to gain a better understanding of successful advertising and its influence on culture.

 The remainder of the weekend focused on the conference itself, which featured over 25 individuals of creative, strategy, and general talent from various agencies and clients.

Hosted by the Chicago Portfolio School, the lectures discussed a variety of topics – from networking and interviewing advice, to novel forms of branding and rising trends in advertising.  

Furthermore, sessions were broken into specialized fields, allowing for more in-depth and specific engagement on niche preferences. Despite the diverse subjects of discussion, themes focused on the human side of advertising and commitment to improvement. 

As the speakers revealed insight and offered advice, they emphasized that it is not only important to be inspired as advertising students, but to inspire others as advertising students.

6 AAF Members, 6 Great Internship Experiences Shared in Noyes Hall

6 AAF Members, 6 Great Internship Experiences Shared in Noyes Hall

By Noel Huicochea

On October 11th, six bright American Advertising Federation members shared their summer internship experiences at the annual Internship Panel. Each of the members had their own, unique experience that helped them develop and grow into advertising experts. A variety of discussed positions included Account Managers, Account Executives, a Social-Media Marketing Intern, and more. Furthermore, they worked at great agencies such as Leo Burnett, Starcom, FCB and Bailey Lauderman, while some panelists even had the opportunity to go out of state.

The members provided useful information: how they came across these internships, important requirements for interviewing, and additional tips for getting on the interviewer’s good side.

When discussing the success of scoring internship opportunities, members referenced “I-Link”, which is a database intended for U of I students. The database is great for a variety of things, but most importantly for finding internships and job opportunities. 

However, some panelists were lucky enough to find their internships by other means. For instance, panelist Sam simply used Google to find internships around the Chicago area and found many opportunities, while panelist Armando found opportunities through the AAF email newsletters. (Go AAF!) 

Throughout the rest of the panel, another topic of interest was the application process for these internships.

“Be Fearless,” said Panelist Gabe, who interned at Leo Burnett this past summer. He talked about applying to many, many internships, even if the odds were against him. Other panelists agreed.

Finally, the panelists gave some advice regarding what to expect and what to do during the stages of applying, interviewing and actually interning. It seemed as though the panelists agreed on being very patient during the application process.

“The applications were extensive, but it was worth every mental breakdown I had,” said Panelist Jalilah.

Furthermore, the president of AAF, Alex, talked positively about his great experience as he learned to live on his own while carrying big responsibilities. Throughout his internship, he was able to meet new people and have the time of his life.

“Everything was rough at first, but by the end of the summer, I didn’t want to leave!” said Alex.

At the end of the panel, the speakers told the crowd to be passionate, while maintaining a good GPA, being involved on campus and striving to be a leader – as all of these characteristics are crucial in becoming successful advertising scholars in the advertising industry. 

How Snapchat Found a Key to Success

How Snapchat Found a Key to Success

“Wait, what did I say in my last snap?”

This common question between snapchat users reflects one of the key features that has set this widely popular application apart from its other social media counterparts: the fleeting nature of the messages. Whether the message is mere seconds or twenty four hours long (for stories), users can enjoy the feeling of fast paced, non-permanent interactions with their friends. The idea is simple and millions of users have taken advantage of this and the other features that Snapchat offers, from wacky filters, ability to screenshot and view who has seen your story.

But what could be better than seeing what your own friends are up to? That’s right. Seeing what other people are up to. We, as active social media users, do this quite often. From scrolling down our Facebook newsfeeds to browsing through pictures on someone’s Instagram account, we’re constantly keeping up with our friends and people that we personally don’t know. In turn, Snapchat has taken advantage of this knowledge. Users can now find snap stories from events around the world. For example, today U of I students can not only see what’s happening on campus, but also updates on New York Fashion Week and the NBA All-Star Game. People from all over the world contribute to these massive stories, giving anyone with access to the application a chance to experience all of these events.

This feature has expanded Snapchat’s horizons, as they were able to follow other social media platforms’ tracks in becoming more globalized. However, there is another less recognized element of Snapchat that has helped propel its popularity: celebrities. These stars choose to share their lives with their snap stories, and it’s not often that you can see exactly what your favorite celebrity has been up to in the past twenty four hours. While high status celebrities like DJ Khaled, Kylie Jenner, Miley Cyrus, Rihanna, Madonna, and more have taken up Snapchat, users can also find YouTube stars on the application. This phenomenon capitalizes on our society’s fixation on the lives of celebrities and helps us realize how we often forget that these people are just like us at the end of the day. Moreover, the presence of these celebrities on Snapchat has encouraged users to further engage with the app. A case in point is DJ Khaled. His rise to fame on Snapchat can be attributed to his stories of his daily routine of waking up, eating breakfast, watering his (perhaps overwatered) flowers and sharing his keys to successes. His stories have generated a movement about achieving success, various memes and an incredible amount of followers and media recognition.

Based on these observations, we can turn it back around by asking: Who else benefits from this?

Well, let’s just say that Snapchat somehow has become a key to success.

Check out BuzzFeed’s list of 18 Celebrity Snapchat accounts that you should follow.

Simply Be Original

Simply Be Original

The 2016 Adidas campaign has made huge strides in strategizing a cutting edge technique to attract more customers. Adidas has always been a popular brand. Its original purpose was to design and sell premium football cleats for the German Olympic team. Nearly 100 years later, the brand has made its way to the top as one of the most desirable brands in America. In 1974, the hit show Starsky and Hutch first premiered Adidas shoes, which then became all the rage.

Adidas is pursuing other fashion trends as well. Not only do they want to be a popular shoe brand, but they’re testing out various clothing and accessories. The new 2016 commercial features products such as their jackets, sweats and tee shirts. It also incorporates new music with a jazzy and vivacious feel. The title of the song is “Your future is not mine” by Daisy Hamel-Buffa. The message of the commercial is to urge customers to be original instead of following the crowd. The products are meant to be showcased as atypical and edgy, similar to the vibe of the commercial.

If the song and message behind the commercial didn’t say it all, then the scenes throughout the commercial will help tie the brand’s image together. The duration of the commercial entails the Adidas model walking against the flow of people in order to stand out. The message of “going your own way” is again showcased here. Moreover, colors in the commercial are dark with bursts of blues and greens creating suspense. It’s evident that Adidas’ presence in the fashion culture is becoming increasingly popular. It seems as though their common street wear is becoming a staple amongst people’s wardrobes. Stores like Urban Outfitters are carrying the brand in their stores too. With commercials like these, Adidas is sure to attract the public.

Their incorporation of unique music with a catchy tune and great message is one ploy they have successfully instilled into their ad campaign. Adidas’ message is one that has been said time and time again, yet they are taking a unique approach. Rather than stating the obvious, they are illustrating their message throughout the commercials by physically placing main actor to be an outcast. The message is simple. Be different; be original; be you.

The Little Restaurant That Could: How Chipotle Won Back Clients with Free Food

The Little Restaurant That Could: How Chipotle Won Back Clients with Free Food

On any given day, the line that wraps around Chipotle on Green Street is inevitable. However, on February 8, there was silence.  

The company closed all locations that morning for a staff food safety training following the recent outbreak of E. Coli that had resulted in closed stores in Oregon and Washington with a federal investigation from the FDA.  

Any food-borne illness, big or small, can easily damage a client base in a matter of weeks.  Chipotle saw a loss of trust in their revenue as they reported a fourth quarter net income of $67.9 million, a decrease of 44%.  Their consumers had no reason to return anytime soon after this outbreak.

Well, almost all customers.  

Here on the UIUC campus, Chipotle reigns king during mealtime. Students flock to the adorned burrito spot.  Even during the E. Coli outbreak, a majority of their client base remained loyal and risked their health, just to eat that delicious steak burrito bowl.

Nick Patterson, a junior in molecular and cellular biology, said during the week the news of the outbreak came out, he ate at Chipotle three times.  He said he that he “loved Chipotle too much to care about feeling sick for a couple of days.”

Fast forward to Feb. 8, when disappointed students — myself included — arrived to find Chipotle’s doors closed. However there was a saving grace – the reminder to text “Raincheck” to 888222.  After giving some simple demographic information, customers were rewarded with a coupon for a free burrito, or any meal item, as long as it was purchased in-store.

Suddenly everyone became a fan of Chipotle, even students who weren’t loyal in the first place.

As any eyewitness can attest, the line at Green Street location was even more monstrous than before, and it was filled almost entirely with students who had their free coupon to use.  The restaurant was especially booming and boisterous on the following Saturday, as those coming from Block were eagerly awaiting their free food.  Some patrons even started arguing with those who had left the line to use the bathroom and returned to their original spot in line.

Chipotle reached their previously untapped potential by taking a page out of the RSO book: if you have free food, they will come.  By bringing their original client base back to the restaurant and giving them a taste of what they’ve come to love, Chipotle did exactly what they needed to win back their target market here in Champaign.

Extra, Extra Scroll all About it!

Extra, Extra Scroll all About it!

It’s no surprise that our generation varies in numerous ways from our parents and grandparents. However, one of these major differences stems from the role of social media in our everyday lives. The news and how it’s obtained by the millennial generation has followed suit.

There are many statistics available that provide evidence that the role of news on Twitter and Facebook are evolving. According to the Pew Research Center, the percentage of users who use Twitter and Facebook to receive their news has jumped from 52% and 47% to 63% from 2013 to 2015. “As more social networking sites recognize and adapt to their role in the news environment, each will offer unique features for news users, and these features may foster shifts in news use” (Barthel, Shearer, Gottified, Mitchell). While Twitter’s news audience has statistically proven to have a larger number, both Twitter and Facebook have grown immensely and share similar qualities when distributing news.

On Facebook, articles are shared daily that provide users with various types of information. These can range from fashion articles to political news stories. No matter what type of information is being shared, the use of the Internet as a news source has become a norm.

Along with social media outlets, various phone apps provide users with news. Apps such as FOXYahoo!CNN and the University of Illinois news app have become a useful news source for college students.

For the most part, I don’t watch cable news to obtain information regarding stories like the 2016 Presidential election, crimes committed nationally and domestically, or celebrity gossip. Along with many peers I have interviewed and discussed this topic with, they agreed that newspapers and cable news are beginning to become a thing of the past. That’s not to say that they’ve become nonexistent sources of stories, it’s merely supporting the idea that the current generation is more technologically advanced and how we consume news is different.

More than an Award

More than an Award

Admit it. Oscars is one of the most attention-provoking and entertaining events that are screened throughout the whole year. Several companies invest and sponsor the show in order to display their advertisements during the break times. So, what’s so special about the Oscars?

Oscars has several public relations components that are connected to the ratings system. Compared to Super Bowl, Oscars’ ratings tend to vary based on the nominees and films that are produced every year. For instance, Titanic won the best picture in 1998 and had the highest number of viewers in Oscars history. Oscars 1998 nearly reached 55 million viewers, whereas Oscars 2016 reached approximately 34 million viewers. The ratings for Oscars 2016 had the smallest 18-to-49-year-old audience in the last twenty years. However, despite the reduction, the Oscars is still most likely to become the year’s most-watched entertaining program.

So, why? And How? The Oscars uses various strategies in order to attract the viewers. This year it certainly used social media accounts and controversies to increase the number of  total viewers. The greatest controversy for Oscars 2016 was the #OscarsSoWhitemovement, which emphasized the importance of diversity and the racial issues behind the Oscars nomination. This year’s host Chris Rock promoted this movement  using the hashtag features on twitter and promoting the show in various social media accounts. By producing this controversy, the #OscarsSoWhite movement became the “top hashtags” on Twitter, which attracted numerous social media users.

Chris Rock was one of the greatest contributors who succeeded to attract the audience for the award ceremony. He used ironic features to criticize, yet contribute to the show at the same time. Chris succeeded to catch the audience’s attention by promoting the show while advocating for change.

The main purpose behind the #OscarsSoWhite movement was to uncover the racial discriminations among the nominees for the awards, and people definitely acknowledged the message behind this controversy. The irony behind this particular hashtag kicks in when considering the purpose of this movement. Though it provoked interest toward many individuals, it also prevented many actors and potential viewers from watching the show due to its controversial factors.

Various social media accounts, such as Instagram and Snapchat, successfully promoted the Oscars as well. Celebrities uploaded pictures to Instagram to show previews of the Oscars. Uploading pictures that are more personalized than the actual show, Instagram effectively connected the audience and celebrities to an intimate level. Similarly, Snapchat had a Live feature that allowed users to upload “Snap Stories” that were related to the ceremony. Through displaying a glimpse of photos and previews for the Oscars, the show successfully promoted the program by creating personal connections.

The Oscars certainly knows how to use sponsorships and social media to attract their viewers, and it is crucial to acknowledge the various strategies that lie behind the flashy spotlights.

However, the choice to either criticize or support the Oscars is all on us. It is simply a part of the entertainment industry, and individuals may feel comfortable with these methods. In the end, it’s society that created this system. 

Power of The Greek System in Marketing

Power of The Greek System in Marketing

Walking around the University of Illinois campus, it’s harder to find students not involved in Greek Life than it is to find the opposite. With the largest Greek community in the country, it’s easy to understand why.

But the Greek community—boasting a national membership of over 9 million members—is much more than a sister- and brotherhood.  It’s the perfect niche market.

On a recent episode of Shark Tank, the startup Frill Clothing was featured.  It’s purpose?  To dress sororities in custom outfits for recruitment, and to make sure no two chapters at any school match.  The two girls started this company while they were seniors in college in their sorority. Now they outfit bridal parties, sell pillows, key chains, coffee mugs and much more.  

These girls aren’t the only ones capitalizing on this ideal market industry.

On any given day while looking around Total Sorority Move and Total Frat Move websites, advertisements from Rowdy Gentleman appear blazoned along the top and side banners, even appearing hyperlinked in articles. However, these advertisements disappear from any other websites.  

Why?  Because Rowdy Gentleman wants Greeks to wear their clothing.

By exclusively marketing to the online audiences that follow TSM andTFM—18 to 24 year-old men and women in the Greek community—they stand out among the collegiate elite instead of getting lost in the shuffle of the entire college demographic. 

They’ve even expanded their brand to draw in “rowdy ladies”, too. The “Lady” line includes shirts and tank tops with the same punchy sayings as the men’s line, but pointedly more feminine in their feel, design and sayings.

Rowdy Gentleman’s company statement on their website couldn’t be more fitting for their target audience; “equal parts sophisticated and sophomoric, refined and rambunctious.”  

Jacquelyn Prestegaard, graduate student and alumni of 4-H House, agreed with their statement, adding the word “shameless” to why she was attracted to the brand. “[S]hameless patriotism and shameless acknowledgement of shameless partying.”

Another consumer of Rowdy Gentleman, Carson Banks, junior and member of Theta Chi fraternity, had other reasons for liking the brand.

“I shop at Rowdy Gentleman because I like the way the clothes look and feel,” he said. Banks also added that the occasional free giveaways with a purchase are “pretty cool, too.”   Like Prestegaard, he said he could relate to the brand and the lifestyle it represents.

Niche marketing strategies are nothing new.  What makes brands like Rowdy Gentleman, Frill Clothing and countless others are how they’ve capitalized on the niche market.  It’s not even that they’ve built their astounding success on minimal paid media and word-of-mouth marketing.  By capitalizing on a market of college students that are intensely social and viewed as “elite,” they’ve attached a supreme image to their brand, they’ve cemented their place in the market, and they’ve made themselves virtually untouchable.

Generation of Body Shaming

Generation of Body Shaming

It is common these days to find many girls obsessing over celebrities and all the gossip found on magazines and social media sites. Many college-aged women follow accounts on various social media platforms like E! Entertainment, People and InTouch magazine. There is a constant wonder of what’s going on in celebrities’ lives. Something about them intrigues us.

On their social media sites alone each magazine has hundreds of thousands of followers. Touch Weekly’s Facebook page has 2,281,626 followers, which means 2 million people are viewing all their posts about women. E! Online’s Facebook page has 8,980,823 followers.

Often times there are magazine covers talking about weight loss and the much dreaded weight gain. In stardom, all the admired celebrities are constantly scrutinized for not looking “perfect” according to society’s standards.

There are countless times that women who are at a healthy weight are being criticized because they are in the limelight. The criticism many females see of celebrities all over their newsfeed and shelves of magazines in stores certainly doesn’t make them feel any better about themselves. The continual influence of these celebrities and models on body images contributes to body shaming in women of all ages.

Many women tend to worry about what they are eating, how many calories or carbs they are consuming, and how often they are working out. Viewing celebrities on the racks of magazines with headlines talking about how much weight they’ve gained makes viewers feel more uncomfortable in their own skin

Some major female icons that are repeatedly in the papers for weight gain are Kim Kardashian, Kelly Clarkson, Mariah Carey and Jennifer Hudson. These accusations of weight gain for these women had caused them to  go on extreme diets proving to fans and paparazzi that they weren’t “fat.”

Another issue a lot of women have is when it comes to sports. When looking at inspirational athletes like Serena Williams it is often said that she looks too muscular or manly.

The standards society sets for women are truly unattainable. Shaming them and calling out their every flaw is just a way to make others feel bad about themselves.

AAF Members Reflect on Internship Experiences

AAF Members Reflect on Internship Experiences

Earlier this week, the Illinois Chapter of the American Advertising Federation held their fall Internship Panel at Gregory Hall. The panel consisted of seven current students at Illinois who held internships this past summer in the advertising field. The panelists held a variety of positions in different companies including Leo Burnett, Yelp, Ogilvy & Mather, and Urban Decay. This event was hosted by the Pro-D committee of AAF, and members of Pro-D asked a variety of questions about the internship experiences of the speakers.

One aspect that the panelists focused on was the process of finding an internship and narrowing down all of the choices they were offered. Pro-D asked about networking and its use in getting an internship.

Past intern at Perricone MD Simran Devidasani said,  “LinkedIn is a huge (tool). I found a lot of email contacts and (potential) companies on LinkedIn.”

Brandon Blunk, an intern at Ogilvy & Mather, said he had networked throughout his entire summer internship. “Every single interaction you have is almost like an interview,” Blunk said. “You are always networking.”

AAF President Hanna Cannell, stated that her “dream internship” was obtainable through her nomination for the 2015 AAF Stickell Internship Program. After she was chosen as the recipient of the program, she went to intern at Urban Decay headquarters in Newport Beach, California.

“You should really get involved in AAF because I would not have been nominated by Steve Hall if I hadn’t been as involved,” said Cannell.

Recipients of the AAF Stickell Internship are nominated as outstanding members of AAF Collegiate chapters and are considered the top 20 AAF students in the country.

These interns described their experiences last summer very positively. As the event began to wrap up, the panelists summed up the skills they obtained from their internship experience. They concluded by advising the audience to have traits of confidence, personality and determination. Lastly, they said to be bold and go after your goals.

Changing the Face of Women in Advertising

Changing the Face of Women in Advertising

Women’s fashion branding is defying the previous socially constructed boundaries and heading into a more inclusive and representative territory. It has recently been announced that LGBT ambassador Caitlyn Jenner will be collaborating with women’s fashion including H&M and beauty giants like MAC Cosmetics in two new global campaigns.

Caitlyn Jenner shocked the world when she came out as a transgender women to Diane Sawyer in April 2015. Formerly known as Bruce Jenner, Olympian and Kardashian patriarch, she had dealt with years of gender dysphoria. Jenner has since gone through hormone replacement therapy and cosmetic surgery to live out her authentic feminine mental state and lifestyle.

Jenner has had a lucrative high profile in the media, thanks in part to her involvement on Keeping Up With The Kardashians for so many years prior. This exposure has catapulted Jenner into the media spotlight becoming an unofficial voice and emblem for the transgender community. She has been featured as Barbara Walters’ Most Fascinating Person of 2015, one of Glamour’s 25 Glamour Women of the Year, on Time magazine’s eight-person shortlist for 2015 Person of the Year, and won the Arthur Ashe Courage Award during the 2015 ESPY Awards, all of which caused considerable controversy.

Caitlyn Jenner embraces her role as an influencer pertaining to gender status and wants her visibility to bring attention to gender dysphoria and violence against transgender women, as well as promote relevant LGBT conversation. She will be a part of a new sports campaign for H&M and will be debuting her own signature lip color for MAC Cosmetics. According to a statement from H&M, Jenner was selected to illustrate inspiration and infinite possibilities in both sports and life. Given Jenner’s accomplished athletic history and identity struggles, it is fitting. 

This is not the first time H&M and MAC Cosmetics has worked with transgender women. H&M hired model Andreja Pejic to walk in their runway show earlier this year, while MAC has worked with TV personality RuPaul. These companies decision to include Caitlyn Jenner in their advertising is setting a groundbreaking precedent, given her virility over the past year. This precedent will influence advertising to head into a more diverse and representative era, reflective of the diversity and individuality of women everywhere. The fashion and beauty industry has considerable influence on society. H&M and MAC Cosmetics are leading the way to push gender fluidity and acceptance into the mainstream, and Caitlyn Jenner’s high-profile endorsement is the first of many steps towards what is predicted to be a large change in the way fashion will be marketed in years to come.


Caution! Don't Watch on an Empty Stomach

Caution! Don't Watch on an Empty Stomach

We make it. We buy it. We show it off. Often, we don’t hesitate to share pictures of the food we eat or make on social media, especially if it’s aesthetically pleasing. Food is so popular because it is a shared commonality among all of us. After all, we all have to eat, don’t we?

Recently, more than just pictures of food have been taking over social media. Pages like BuzzFeed, Tasty and Spoon University have come to the forefront in sharing video recipes—most of the time lasting one minute or less. In essence, it’s like watching a compressed cooking show without comments from the chef. It’s fast; it’s impersonal; it’s addicting. Delicious recipes aren’t the only recipes that Tasty and Spoon University, among others, have created. Rather, they’ve taken two of the most highly valued factors in society—food and time—and created a trend from it.

There are a lot of great benefits that come from these short videos. You no longer have to sit down in front of a TV or computer and stream a whole cooking show that often lasts for half an hour or more. Instead, if you really wanted, you could learn 15 new recipes in roughly 15 minutes (though let’s be real, we’re often on our fifth video before we realize how much we’ve watched). Moreover, these videos are fun to watch. Coupled with some upbeat music, colorful ingredients and a modern, yet aesthetically pleasing layout, it’s not surprising that we take time to watch these videos. While learning and following the recipe may require more effort, these videos are great to watch while casually scrolling through Facebook. And finally, they make cooking simple. For most college students, cooking seems elusive, thus becoming a hassle. But with videos like these, cooking almost looks….fun.

The only drawback, if you can call it one, is the impersonal features of these videos. You never see who’s cooking the food, whereas the traditional cooking shows allow you to follow a specific chef. The compressed timing, while useful to some, also takes away the extra comments and tips that could have been useful. Of course, Tasty and Spoon University aren’t trying to make extremely complicated dishes you would find at a five star restaurant.

Overall, this trend certainly reflects the value our society places on instant gratification. However, this isn’t necessarily “bad.” It’s a representation of how our society constantly strives to make things fast and efficient, and the process of sharing recipes is one aspect of it. Here’s a fair warning though: don’t watch those videos on an empty stomach.