AdFed offers students practice and careers

Mary Anne Andrews

After nearly a year of hard work, AdFed, WKU’s advertising club, has submitted a 32-page marketing campaign to the National Student Advertising Competition.

Hermitage, Tenn., senior Jessica Troccoli, Lexington senior Kelley Boothe, Bowling Green senior Mitch Henson, Smithfield senior Tom Schatzinger and Bowling Green senior Eric Brodzinski will present their top-secret marketing plan for Nissan to the NSAC in Akron, Ohio, on April 21 at the district competition.

This annual competition provides students with real-world experience in their future fields.

Brodzinski, a competition presenter and AdFed recruiter, said the team has an unusually good chance of winning this year due to the new format of the project.

“The reason it’s so cool this year is that it’s normally an in-class project,” Brodzinski said. “So this year we went to the faculty and got permission to do it on our own. We’ve been working on it all year instead of just a semester.”

Brodzinski said the group owes their success to the leadership of Troccoli and Boothe, along with the faculty support of Associate Professor Mark Simpson.

“We were handed this huge project,” Brodzinski said. “We didn’t have it in a classroom, and it’s really hard since we don’t have a lot of experience. Mark Simpson just gave us really great guidance. From getting pizza to keeping us motivated, he was there for the duration.”

WKU has come in the top three at NSAC for the last several years, usually coming in under the University of Kentucky or the University of Ohio. The district has 10 schools in the competition.

Brodzinski said a win would give the advertising department much-deserved recognition.

Because of his membership in AdFed and the American Advertising Federation, Brodzinski was able to participate in the presentation.

“AdFed offers really good opportunities that teach you how to make professional and personal connections in the business, because that’s really important to succeed,” Brodzinski said.

Paige Johnson, a WKU graduate, was president of AdFed last semester. She credits Adfed with connecting her to Power Creative, an advertising agency in Louisville where she works as a media coordinator.

On an AdFed trip to Power Creative, Johnson was able to make contacts, apply and then get a job after graduating in December.

“AdFed is about networking, making connections and keeping up with the latest advertising trends,” Johnson said.

Alexandria sophomore Rachael Fusting said AdFed has already helped her make several significant connections.

She said AdFed trips and activities have shown her the diversity of the advertising field.

“I love it because you are around people who show you the structure of an ad agency,” Fusting said. “You have to think of yourself in different categories. Some agencies focus on the business side and some do video editing.”

Fusting and Brodzinski both said they are looking forward to the next AdFed trip to Atlanta, Ga., on April 13. The group will tour two agencies and make new contacts.