Upstream 2015The University of Oregon School of Journalism and Communication (SOJC) Ad Team, Upstream Advertising, will advance to National Student Advertising Competition (NSAC) finals, June 10-13, in Las Vegas, Nev.

Upstream, made up of 26 SOJC advertising students, placed first in the American Advertising Federation (AAF) District 11 regional competition in Boise, Idaho, in addition to winning several individual awards. Ben Kraft won Best Male Presenter; Nicole Hamburger won Best Female Presenter; and Rachel Ellam, Helen Torney and Alex Junquera won Best Presentation Graphics.

The semi-final elimination round consisted of 18 district-winning teams, each of whom completed a 15-minute Q&A with four judges via conference call. Only eight of 18 teams advanced to the final round, and more than 130 college and university teams entered the competition.

“This year’s team was a very united and tightly knit group,” says David Koranda, SOJC senior instructor and Ad Team advisor. “They have been very self motivated and have worked hard all year. The team did a fantastic job of matching the strategy they developed with the creative elements. I’m very proud of them.”

Each year the AAF partners with a major corporate client to challenge more than 200 college chapters across the country to develop an integrated marketing campaign for a specific product, service or brand aimed at diverse target markets. This year’s client, Pizza Hut, challenged students to create a campaign that would increase digital ordering by 70 percent.

The UO Ad Team last attended the NSAC finals in 2010, placed second in the overall competition in 2002 and won first place in 1988.

In 2009, the team did not place in the competition, but was later contacted by the client, The Century Council, a non-profit that fights to eliminate drunk driving, and asked to implement its campaign proposal, which can be seen on the UO campus as Balance the Buzz.

Story by Jessica Glackin ‘15