It has been one week and a half since the group returned to Michigan, just long enough for the jet lag to wear off and for the moments shared in China to become some of the students’ favorite memories.
From meeting with some of the most talented names in advertising to trying squid, jellyfish and more exotic foods at local restaurants, there was no shortage of great experiences.
A few of the students shared their best moments…
Paige Bruno, advertising senior, Team Pulp Non-Fiction
“I guess if I had to pick, I’d say all the times we went out for lunch and dinner. I’m usually not super adventurous with food, but I tried a few things I never thought I would!” Paige said. “Plus, it was a ton of fun to take breaks from the competition and just eat and hang out with everyone.”
Sarah Goodyear, advertising senior, Team Flight Club
Sarah enjoyed “experiencing (the Chinese) culture through trying new foods” like dumplings, seaweed, jellyfish and bamboo. She also noted some additional experiences such as taking a ride with Mary Jane in a tuk tuk, a three-wheeled vehicle used as a taxi in many Asian countries; Quinn’s unfortunate yet comical run-in with the revolving door at the hotel; and visiting the Shanghai Tower at night. Above all, Sarah loved “working with a group of talented and creative individuals who made this trip truly unforgettable.”
Yi Rong, advertising senior, Team Flight Club
Yi was one of the MSU students originally from China who competed in the 2016 One Show. She found traveling with Americans to be very amusing at times, watching their reactions to different foods and environments.
“In Chinese, basically, we eat everything, however, some of the Americans are not used to eat some of the Chinese food, such as the blood, or chicken head,” Yi said.
In terms of the One Show Greater China Festival, Yi said the cross-cultural brainstorming was very “impressive” because both the American students and the Chinese students approached the brief differently, but through collaboration they were able to effectively work together.
As time will continue to pass and the students’ 10 days in China will seem further and further away, the connections, skills and memories created together will serve as reminders of the incredible learning opportunity they were given through the Department of Advertising + PR at Michigan State University.
The day after the closing awards ceremony, on their last full day in Shanghai, students ventured into the city to explore for the first time since arriving in China just over a week ago.
First stop: the Long Hua Temple, a destination recommended by Henry and his wife, Therese. About a half hour away, the temple sat in the middle of the city, an interesting contrast to the surrounding highways and high-rise buildings.
From the entrance it was hard to imagine the what lay beyond the tall fence that separated it from the busy streets. That being said, nobody expected the vastness of the location. On the inside, beyond the barrier, there were several structures. Each one was dedicated to a unique display of the Buddhist religion. They were decorated with Chinese writing and delicate detailing of stone atop the roofs. Golden figures towered over all who entered each of the different buildings, intricately crafted decor hung from the ceiling and art on the walls waited to be admired.
The students toured around the temple, taking photos of vow belts hanging from the baobab trees in the courtyards and stroking stray kittens soaking up the sun.
About halfway through the visit, the low rhythmic chants of the monks broke the silence. They walked out in an organized procession, one behind the other in rows. It was an experience one can only hope to have while in China. An incredible moment to take back to the United States.
When the time came to leave, the group traveled to a popular street market called Tinz Tfang. The market was intertwined between buildings and spread throughout the narrow alleyways. It was a mix of tiny boutiques and rolling carts selling chopsticks, silk scarves, art and so much more.
Everyone split up to seek out the souvenirs they wished to take home for their families and friends. An hour and a half was given before they were all to meet back at the front of the maze-like market. Anxious to shop, the group separated.
To curb the hunger caused by shopping, lunch in the French Concession followed. Through the window of a restaurant, a plate of fried rice enticed the famished group to enter.
On the night’s agenda, a long-awaited trip up to the second tallest building in the world: The Shanghai Tower. The students had been talking about the famous spot all week, making it a perfect finale for their adventure in China. With a 360-view of the city, over 1,000 feet in the air, the lights of the buildings flickered, creating unique patterns up and down their tall frames. Mary Jane started a little game by challenging the others to locate the hotel from above. A task that proved to be easy for some once they singled out the signature deep yellow hue of the sign’s lights.
To close the final day, the group gathered for dinner at a hot pot restaurant called Elixir. They were joined by some of the mentors, Mo and Carlos, and Dean Sciole and Celia from The One Club.
The trip was just a few hours from being over. Soon the students would pack their bags and head to the airport for a flight to the United States. But before that, they enjoyed the time they had left, eating delicious food and recounting the experience of the competition and being in China.
It was the last night the group would be together for a while, but not for the last time. Everyone grew so close and shared so many moments over the course of the week. A Shanghi reunion is already in the works...
The morning after the MSU teams were cut, the top teams from each of the classes gave their final presentations for the judges. The eliminated teams were allowed to attend and see what plans for the brief had made it through.
Twenty-four teams had 10 minutes to convince the judges that their approach was worthy of a pencil from The One Club. As the presentations continued one by one, the MSU students chose their favorites and placed bets on which ones would win gold.
During the lunch break, the MSU students divided into smaller groups. Some went back to the hotel to relax in between the morning and afternoon sessions of presentations. The others went for lunch at a small restaurant known for its “woodles,” which were bowls of noodles or wontons with vegetables or meat. It was a very popular dish among the students during the trip. This particular lunch was a few of the students’ second or third trip to that location!
The afternoon was much like the morning session. The remaining teams shared their ideas and passed out Snickers to the mentors and the crowd. The students were in agreement after the day was over that it would be a while before they picked up the chocolate bar again after working with the product all week.
When the last team exited the stage, the venue cleared out in preparation for the evening’s award ceremony. The event would mark the close of the 2016 One Show Greater China Festival.
The ceremony began just after 7 p.m. Celia Wen started the night by welcoming everyone and sharing the agenda. Ma Chao, chief representative of The One Club Greater China Office and executive director of the One Show Festival for Greater China, further welcomed the audience and thanked everyone for attending the 2016 One Show Awards Ceremony.
Before the distribution of awards began, teams were invited to the stage to take photos with each of their mentors. In Class B, Team Flight Club posed with Mo Said, Albert Lin and Carlos Camacho. When Class C was called, Team Pulp Non-Fiction gathered with their mentors Andy Azula and Mark Kong. When all of the teams were getting photographed with their mentors, you could see what being given the opportunity to work with them meant. They were so excited to share a creative space with them and learn about the world of advertising from professionals who have found success in it. You could feel the happiness in the room that night, even before any awards were given.
The first round of awards were for the students’ submissions that were used to qualify them for the One Show Greater China Festival. Several medals – in replace of pencils – were handed out by presenters including MSU Department of Advertising + Public Relation’s own Henry Brimmer who awarded the bronze medal winners.
When the time came to announce the winners of the bronze, silver and gold pencils, the room was abuzz with energy and anticipation.
Multiple winners in each category were awarded for their work on the Snickers and QQ brief, including two teams who received gold pencils. As each of the winning teams’ names were called the room would erupt with cheer from the section that they were sitting. A week full of sleepless nights, filming and editing videos, creating presentations and standout graphics all came together in those moments and you could sense the accomplishment that those teams felt.
Celia closed the ceremony, simultaneously acknowledging the end to another One Show competition. To commemorate the evening, many teams flooded the stage for photos with other participants, mentors and the large 3D letters that spelled “One Show.”
Thus, cheers to the 2016 One Show Greater China Festival...
Wednesday was the day the students had been preparing for since arriving in Shanghai. It was cut day. By the end of the morning’s presentations, they would know if they would be in the running for a pencil from The One Club.
Team Flight Club woke early to meet with two of their mentors, Albert and Mo, at 10 a.m. – just two and a half hours before their scheduled presentation time. Albert emphasized to them the importance of how they performed their presentation. During the meeting, they were given instruction to change pieces of their plan, sending them back to work prior to their pitch at 12:30 p.m.
Meanwhile, Team Pulp Non-Fiction arrived at the conference center to give their presentation at 11 a.m. Each member walked in wearing a “Snickers Society” sticker that they created, ready to show their class and mentors the meaning behind them. Eric Schwartz represented the team as their speaker. Mary Jane O’Connor assumed the same role for Flight Club.
They put all of their work on the table for their mentors and the other competing groups. The ideas they had been building – sidelining sleep in order to get them right – were in the mentors’ hands and it was up to them to determine which plans had the most potential.
The mentors took a few moments to deliberate following the conclusion of each classes’ presentations.
When they returned, they announced the four teams that will compete for a pencil on Thursday. As they read through the names of the teams that will be continuing on, Team Flight Club and Pulp Non-Fiction were not on the list. The two teams from MSU will not move on in the 2016 One Show Greater China Festival.
Their mentors were insistent that they are willing to work with the teams that were not selected in order to improve the parts of their ideas that they felt were necessary in order to move on. One of the goals of this competition is for the participants to walk away with a portfolio piece, so the mentors want to ensure that they feel satisfied with what they are taking home with them. Despite being eliminated, the MSU teams said they were proud of the work they had accomplished and the experience as a whole was more than worth the journey.
On Thursday, the final 24 teams will present for the judges and the rest of the groups. The students will have the opportunity to watch the presentations and learn from the others’ ideas and implementations. The winners will be announced later in the evening at the official closing award ceremony.
While the MSU students’ time as participants in the competition has ended, the time to return to Michigan is still three days away. There are so many sights to see in Shanghai that are waiting to be explored. To boost their spirits after being cut, the students ventured into the city to see the beautiful and beaming Oriental Pearl Tower, one of the city’s famous landmarks.
See a video of the visit to the tower on Instagram!
清晨六点，Flight Club的队员荣祎早早地起床，和其他队友在1307房间会合。在昨晚和自己的导师Mo Said讨论之后，他们重新思考了自己的execution,并展开了激烈地讨论，并分成了两个阵营，大有针尖对麦芒的感觉。在最终演讲的前半个小时，他们最终达成共识。
11：30，Pulp Non-Fiction所在的班级开始班内选拔演讲。每支队伍都有两票，他们可以给自己所在的队伍投一票，另一票必须要投给别组。Pulp Non-Fiction是最后一个出场。
Pulp Non-Fiction小组做完演讲之后，队员们坐在位置上紧张而焦急地等待着最终的结果。他们将手紧紧地握在一起，给予彼此力量。十分钟之后，结果公布。很可惜，他们并没有能进入最后的决赛。他们来不及失落，马上赶到Flight Club所在班级的门口，等待他们组的最终结果。又是漫长而磨人的等待，Flight Club也没有进入最终的比赛。
Mo提到了这次的客户有两个，QQ和士力架。而美国学生对QQ的了解是有限的，而大部分中国学生确实用着QQ一起成长的。如何很好地了解和融入QQ文化，对美国队员而言是很大的考验。Flight Club始终缺少那一个令人眼前一亮的执行。Pulp Non-Fiction的导师Andy也在采访中说了类似的内容。他们的内容还不够有趣，不能让人留下深刻的印象。
The MSU teams have been putting in long hours and consuming lots of delivery food in order to finish up their initial presentations that they must give for their mentors on Wednesday. How they do on these presentations will determine who moves on in the competition.
This is how it will work –
All of the teams are divided into classes based on their mentors. Each class has about 10 teams, but by the end of Wednesday, six of them will be eliminated leaving only 24 teams to qualify for the final presentations on Thursday.
On Tuesday, Team Flight Club spent their day filming and creating animations for their idea. Their approach to the brief is to use QQ, the penguin, to promote Snickers with a unique take on the app’s well-known mascot.
Team Pulp Non-Fiction’s plan is to create a program in QQ that is based upon connecting friends in what they call a “Snickers Society.” In the program, people can create their own society with their group of friends and track their hunger levels, send them memes and funny videos about what they're like when they're hungry in order to target Snickers' message that “You’re Not You When You’re Hungry.”
Amidst the preparation, news coverage for the 2016 presidential election began early in the evening as everyone in the United States started to wake up and the polls opened. The students turned on CNN and tuned in periodically to watch as the long-anticipated event unfolded.
At the tail end of the evening, Henry Brimmer surprised the two groups with a cake to celebrate Matt’s birthday, one of the students participating in the competition. It was a reminder that despite the fact that the group is separated into two teams and competing against one another, everyone is here together and supporting one another as friends and as Spartans.
相较于Pulp Non-Fiction, Flight Club所面临的问题大概更加严峻。在早上的第一轮陈述结束后，他们被告知自己的队伍表现并不靠前，并且，他们需要和另外6个小组争取最后一个晋级席位。
在节奏紧张的比赛日常中，也有一缕脉脉温情包围着参赛队员们。今天是Matt Richter的21周岁生日，Henry买了一个小蛋糕，意外地出现在1307，Pulp Non-Fiction的队员们也纷纷现身，一起庆祝Matt生日快乐。
After a long day of meetings with mentors and running through their ideas, the students visited the WPP School of Marketing and Communications in Shanghai. WPP, the largest marketing group in the world, partnered with the Shanghai Art & Design Academy to establish the school in 2011.
Harrison Dong, the dean of the school, said the goal at the school has been to offer students a real-world experience and recreate what it’s like to work at an agency in the classroom.
WPP recently sent over a dozen of their students to Michigan State University in September to participate in ‘Minds (Wide) Open’ for the second time. ‘Minds (Wide) Open’ is an event similar to the One Show, but on a smaller scale in comparison. It was started at MSU by Henry Brimmer who took inspiration from a trip to China for the One Show where he experienced what The One Club was doing to encourage and support young advertising students and their careers.
The visit to the WPP School was to celebrate the success of ‘Minds (Wide) Open’ and to check out the MSU students’ work on display throughout the complex. Some of the featured work was from students currently competing in the One Show Greater China Festival including Lauren Cutler, Paige Bruno, Madison Johnson, Eric Schwartz, Sarah Goodyear and Matt Richter. The students watched their advertisements play and admired their designs that decorated the halls. It’s amazing to know that your work is being shared globally and seen by other young aspiring advertisers.
A reception was arranged with food, drinks and a short film created by MSU alum Jenny Berggren was shown highlighting what happened during ‘Minds (Wide) Open.’ Many alumni from the Shanghai-area, two of the students’ One Show mentors, as well as several representatives of the WPP School were in attendance.
The MSU Department of Advertising + Public Relations has so much support in China. It’s incredible to hear how the program has impacted the alumni who have obtained positions abroad; the Chinese students who have participated in programs at the university; and colleagues and friends of the faculty, like Henry, who have formed such valuable relationships with people.
As the event winded down, the students returned to the hotel to carry on with their preparation for the critical next two days. By Wednesday, many teams will be cut and only 24 teams will move on to the final presentations in hopes of receiving a Pencil from The One Club.
上海WPP School与MSU一直保持着密切的联系。WPP School校长Harrison和广告学院的教授Henry Brimmer于两年前在北京相识，一见如故。Harrison说，他十分钦佩教授Henry对广告教育事业投入的热情，在得知Henry要在MSU举办Minds Wide Open之后，就带着12位WPP的学员，不远万里来到美国东兰辛，参加比赛。而那个时候，Harrison对Minds Wide Open一无所知。
去年是MSU举办Minds Wide Open的第一个年头。出乎意料地，上海WPP School和上海师范大学都将自己最优秀的学生送来密歇根参加比赛。
Harrison在接受采访时表示，去MSU参见Minds Wide Open这对WPP school的学生而言是一次非常难得的机会。长途跋涉的疲惫，语言障碍，文化差异，面对全新环境的胆怯，都是他们需要跨越的困难。
在MSU成功举办了两届Minds Wide Open比赛之后，MSU赠送给WPP School一部分优秀学生作品，它们出现在WPP School的展示墙上，见证了两个学校的深厚友谊。
MSU的学生们参观完校园之后，他们和WPP School老师、学生一起，开启了Party time. Henry 还邀请了MSU在上海居住、工作的的毕业校友，ONE SHOW大中华地区CEO马超和其他的工作人员，上海师范大学的老师，和负责两支MSU队伍的导师，一起加入到这个充满温情和激情的夜晚。
In the morning, the two teams – Flight Club and Pulp Non-Fiction – met with their mentors to discuss their ideas for the Snickers brief. After working hard the day before to study QQ and get familiar with the app, they started mapping out their ideas for what they want to create.
The mentors wanted the students to come up with as many ideas as they could in order to find the one that best fits the brief and the brand message.
Team Pulp Non-Fiction and other teams in their group were asked to present for their mentors, Andy Azula and Mark Kong, during the first meeting. They wrote out their plans on pieces of paper and taped them to the wall of the barriers that separated them from the other teams and mentors. When Pulp Non-Fiction’s turn came, they explained their approach to the brief and their thought process for making it happen.
If a team's plan was good, it stayed on the board. If it was off track, it got dropped and let go. Andy told the team which of their ideas had potential and then asked them to come back later and try again. So the team left the conference center to clear their heads and communicate with one another about how to move forward.
Coming up with plans for the brief has proved to be a challenge for both teams, but they’re steadily making progress with understanding and creatively thinking about Snickers and QQ. Their ideas should begin to manifest in the next day or two as the final presentation looms closer.
About the blog
The students' experiences in China will be documented in both English and Chinese by two journalism students from Michigan State University traveling with the group.