On Tuesday, June 7th 2022, the FATE annual Student Showcase was finally back after a 2-year pandemic hiatus, and we were THRILLED. Our 9th graders developed marketing and advertising campaigns for Merit and our 10th graders designed a Merit product collection.
Each year our 9th and 10th grade FATE cohorts participate in an end-of-year capstone project where they put their skills in business, entrepreneurship, marketing, and design-thinking to practice! Four 9th grade teams were asked to create a Marketing and Advertising Campaign for Merit (our cause-based fashion brand) which included a 60-second commercial, a print advertisement, and a pitch presentation. A panel of expert judges in the PR and marketing field was tasked with declaring the winner - which means their commercial will be used and promoted by Merit! Our 10th graders were split into three teams and developed a Merit Product Collection. These collections were on display trade show booth style and available for presale at the Student Showcase. The team with the most pre-sales is declared the winner and their collection will be produced in full by Merit!
Grade 9: Marketing & Advertising Campaign for Merit
Just a few months ago, our 9th graders were put into 4 teams to work on their Grade 9 Capstone Project: Creating a Marketing and Advertising Campaign for Merit. Each team was responsible for creating a 60-second commercial and a print advertisement.
Let’s meet this year’s Grade 9 Project Teams:
- Team Members: DeMario, Icyss, Jacob, Tiakeya, and Tiana
- Theme: “Detroit Is…”
- What They Learned: “We learned that if you put in hard work and dedication, you will get a great outcome in the end. Although we mainly agreed on some things, we learned how to come to one solution. Not only were we inspired by each other’s hard work, but we also learned to work together and coordinate with each other.”
- Team Members: Aby, Meriam, Neubian, and Rahmani
- Theme: “It’s Giving Quality”
- What They Learned: “We learned that there are a lot of moving parts to make a commercial. It takes a lot of people, teamwork, energy, effort, time, and ideas to come up with a full commercial. But despite all the hard work, it was a lot of fun!”
Proyecto Los Campeones
- Team Members: Andre, Azariah, Camryn, Elijah, Jasmine, and Phillip
- Theme: “A Brand that Grows With You”
- What They Learned: “When creating our project we learned that reflecting on old ideas can generate new and useful concepts. We also learned that by working on a team and meeting new people helps you express yourself. Being in Fate taught us we can learn new things about ourselves.”
- Team Members: Allahdeen, Donnelle, Kailin, Rashaad, Shanya, and Skye
- Theme: “Voice Your Value”
- What They Learned: “We learned how to value each other’s ideas and make everyone feel heard. Everyone comes with good ideas, we just have to work together.”
ABOUT THE GRADE 9 CAPSTONE PROJECT
To begin developing a marketing and advertising campaign, each team needed to go through the “creative concepting” phase. With professional support from Woodward Original’s very own - Stevie Ansara and our Creative Team from Creative Circle, students applied what they learned about the Merit brand to their brainstorming sessions. Each team first thought of words that came to mind when thinking about Merit, which were then narrowed down into a few campaign theme ideas.
For example, one team focused on the quality of the Merit product such as it being “comfortable” and “stylish” and wanted to highlight the give back component of Merit which donates 20% of profits to the FATE program. This eventually led to their theme of “It’s Giving Quality”! With a campaign theme established, teams began to storyboard their commercial, develop a script, and decide the locations, props, costumes, and cast for their commercials and print ads.
The Creative Team
Before production begins, each team has to pitch their marketing and advertising campaign idea to our Creative Team that is made up of professionals from Creative Circle who are tasked with bringing each team’s vision to life. This year’s creative team included:
- Allison Farrand, Photographer
- Adam Luger, Videographer
- Jeff Martin, Graphic Designer
- Paige Merritt, Producer
- Stephen Timblin, Copywriter
- Stevie Ansara, Producer
One of the most exciting days is each team’s film day! Each team has the opportunity to travel throughout Detroit to a variety of locations to shoot their commercial scenes. This year’s locations included: Downtown Detroit, Narrow Way Cafe, Meijer - Rivertown Market Detroit, our very own Kat Grow’s neighborhood, and the FATE Space.
With their commercials and print ads complete, each team is tasked with creating a pitch presentation that describes their project goals, creative process, campaign theme, why they picked their theme, target customer, about their commercial, about their print ad, where they will advertise their campaign, and what was learned. These pitches were shared during our annual FATE Student Showcase!
2022 STUDENT SHOWCASE - GRADE 9
On Tuesday, June 7th 2022, we finally held our annual Student Showcase at the Jam Handy after a 2-year pandemic hiatus! All 4 teams pitched their marketing and advertising campaigns for Merit and premiered their commercials and print ads for the first time. In order to pick a winner, each team was evaluated by a panel of judges who are experts in the PR/Marketing field, and this year we added two FATE experts as well! Our expert panel of judges included:
- Dexter Sullivan, Director of DEI & Allyship at Lambert
- Michael Haener, Co-Founder at Midwest Common
- Tyrel Kirkham, VP Brand & Marketing Strategy at Detroit Pistons
- Mariam Kante, 12th Grade FATE Student
- Olivia Vinckier, FATE Mentor
The judges were asked to score the overall presentation (criteria included: participation, content, innovation, planting feet, focusing on the audience, projecting voice, and finishing each sentence strong) as well as the commercial and print ad (criteria included: quality and visual appeal, relevance and usability, and innovation).
Every year it amazes us how brave our 9th graders are to stand in front of an audience of over 200 people and deliver such impressive presentations! As usual, we were SO IMPRESSED. SO PROUD. AND IN AWE. of each and every student!
Check out their incredible campaigns below:
Winning Bolts - “Detroit Is…”
Radiant Ravens - “It’s Giving Quality”
Proyecto Los Campeones - “A Brand That Grows With You”
Merit Monsters - “Voice Your Value”
Videographer: Adam Luger, Blue Racer Productions
Graphic Designer: Jeff Martin | Photographer: Allison Farrand
The Winning Team!!!
Once the judges were done deliberating, the scores were calculated and the winning 9th grade team was chosen! Additionally, we asked the audience to help us determine a “People’s Choice Award” for who they thought had the best presentation and campaign! This year, our “People’s Choice” vote went to “Winning Bolts” with their “Detroit Is…” campaign and our official WINNER OF THE 2022 STUDENT SHOWCASE COMPETITION was…
Proyecto Los Campeones!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Proyecto Los Campeones took home the big win with their “A Brand That Grows With You Campaign”! We are so incredibly proud of all four teams and the hard work they put into these campaigns the past few months. We are constantly inspired by their dedication, creativity, leadership, and teamwork! We hope you enjoyed them as much as we did!
As well as a special thank you to Lambert for being our 2022 Student Showcase sponsor and this year’s judges:
- Dexter Sullivan, Michael Haener, Tyrel Kirkham, Mariam Kante, and Olivia Vinckier
Photo Credit: Allison Farrand