Two talented members of FCB Joburg’s Graduate Program – Nontokozo Tshabalala and Shannon Koor – have won a rigorous internal evaluation process and will be flying to Michigan State University in the United States to attend the highly respected Minds Wide Open workshop.
Minds Wide Open forms part of the One Show bootcamp initiative and is an intense five-day workshop-cum-competition for advertising students from around the world.
In a new undertaking of its own, FCB Joburg will cover all travel, accommodation and related costs for two of its Graduates to attend the annual event. Tshabalala and Koor are the first to benefit from this exciting new addition to the FCB Joburg Graduate Program.
Now in its third year, Minds Wide Open 2017 will be headed up by Professor at Michigan State University and world-renown designer, Henry Brimmer, and ex-Jupiter Drawing Room Chief Creative Officer, Ross Chowles.
It will open with a panel discussion on Women in Advertising. Its major focus, however, is an advertising competition among students from different countries.
The 100 attendees, irrespective of their country of origin, are placed into teams of six to eight. Each team is assigned two professional mentors, highly regarded creative directors from some of the top agencies worldwide (including FCB Joburg), as well as a translator to enable idea exchanges.
The teams are given a live client brief, which spells out the problem as well as the goals the client wants the students to tackle creatively from a younger generation’s viewpoint. Under their mentors’ guidance, the students will spend four days coming up with campaign ideas that address the brief.
On the fifth day, all teams have 20 minutes each to ‘pitch’ their campaign. Mentors, the client and guest professionals from the community get to vote for the winning campaign, which is announced at that evening’s award ceremony.
FCB Joburg Creative Director, Suhana Gordhan, was one of the mentors at the 2016 edition, while her colleague and agency Creative Director, Collette Wasielewski, has been invited to mentor this year.
Announcing the addition to its graduate programme, FCB Joint Chief Creative Officer, Jonathan Deeb, said Minds Wide Open is a singular opportunity for the agency’s graduates to learn about advertising in a global context, but that’s not all.
“Minds Wide Open’s goal is to lead the way by establishing far reaching partnerships, and long lasting friendships, thus fostering cross cultural communication and understanding. This is absolutely in line with FCB’s belief that it is important to create relationships, spaces and situations that enable our people to grow, so that together with our partners we can make brave, Never Finished work.” he said.
“The decision to send two graduates from FCB is also very much in line with FCB’s vision of growing young, upcoming talent and by investing in inspiring and out-of-the ordinary training experiences,” added Joint Chief Creative Officer Ahmed Tilly.
“We strive at all times to create effective solutions to our clients’ problems while building the knowledge and skills base of everyone around us – for the betterment of the industry at large.
“We are incredibly proud of Nontokozo and Shannon, who were selected out of a total of nine creatives from FCB Joburg’s Graduate Program to jet off to the States. They are exceptionally talented young women and it was fantastic to announce their success, especially given it is Women’s Month!”
The selection process was intense and very rigorous, calling for creative submissions to meet a specific brief, a first round of judging by FCB Joburg’s Deputy Management Council, and verification by FCB Joburg’s Joint Chief Creative Officers Jonathan Deeb and Ahmed Tilly, Creative Director and current Loeries Chairperson, Suhana Gordhan and Creative Director Collette Wasielewski.
“We all look forward to hearing about their experiences and sharing in the lessons they will undoubtedly learn in Michigan on their return,” Tilly said.