written by June-Young Lee, Senior PR Specialist
Organized by the University of Utah – David Eccles School of Business, the competition was held at the Songdo Global Campus in Incheon on the 21st of April, with Adobe as the official sponsor, and was designed to foster students’ critical thinking skills and improve their marketing communication skills through webpage creation. About 40 students, divided into 15 teams, used Adobe programs to create a website for WHOlivesorg, a nonprofit organization that supports water-scarce countries. Matthew Pecsok, the Assistant Professor at the David Eccles School of Business is the co-chair of this competition event.
What is the Social Impact Challenge? What is its purpose?
Matthew Pecsok: The WHOLives social impact challenge is a competition run by the David Eccles School of Business to increase awareness of the need for clean water around the world. In this competition, students learn technical skills to promote the WHOlives non-profit organization by building a website and designing a marketing campaign. Ultimately its purpose is to generate societal benefit as well as grow student skills.
How was your experience co-hosting this event?
Matthew Pecsok: I enjoyed working with everyone during this event. I’m grateful to our sponsors such as Pepsi, Kahlert Initiative, Eigenx, and US Synthetic for their generous financial support of the competition as well as to the Utah Asia Campus for their student scholarships for top teams. Professor Byoung-Gyu Gong as well as John Woo and Jacob Lee launched a great competition. We are all in debt to Professor Chong Oh for his creation of this competition and support to launch it at the Utah Asia campus. It’s an honor to work with such amazing individuals who are so committed to providing opportunities to students.
What are some skills/things that students can learn from participating in this competition?
Matthew Pecsok: Students learn storytelling, UX Design, and marketing and hone their presentation skills. These are critical skill sets for students to grow throughout their education and by providing a fun way to do this they learn a lot in a short time.
Who were some of the sponsors for this event? How were they acquired?
Matthew Pecsok : Pepsi, Kahlert Initiative, Eigenx, and US Synthetic as well as the Utah Asia Campus. The first 4 sponsors have been sponsors of the WHOlives competition at the Salt Lake City campus for a while now and were so generous to help us launch the competition at the UAC. Our faculty reached out to them to see if they would be interested in helping and they were all very enthusiastic about sponsoring the competition. Support from our industry partners is a big piece of what makes the David Eccles School of Business successful in running events like this.
Please feel free to add any additional information about the event.
Matthew Pecsok : We are also much in debt to all of the judges both from the faculty and staff at the Utah Asia Campus as well as our industry partners. We couldn’t have done it without you all! I’d also like to thank all the teams who competed. Every team put a lot of work into their submission and I’m so proud of what they all accomplished. You’re all winners!
Here is an interview with competition winners, Team attentION including three students, Ga Eun Choi, Ahyeon Kim, and Yujeong Kim,
What was the most challenging part when creating the webpage?
Ga Eun Choi: First and foremost, I thought a lot about “How can our Call-to-action be effectively communicated to people? As the biggest factor of web page creation was to induce people to easily read and move to sponsored pages, many visual and technical approaches were needed. And also, since everyone is making a presentation with the same topic, I thought about how to create a unique web page that is different from everyone else.
What were some of the challenges you faced in preparing for the project?
Ga Eun Choi: Since everyone is presenting on the same topic, I think the biggest challenge was how to get big differences(features) in our team from others.
Ahyeon Kim: First, while researching the Wholives drill project, I thought a lot about how to effectively market it. Also, preparing the ppt and script in time for the presentation seemed to be the most difficult.
Yujeong Kim: Since this was my first time using Adobe, it was not easy to organize the contents of the campaign all at once. Also, since the project was not meant to introduce the campaign itself but to promote it, we had to find additional information and come up with ideas in a short amount of time. I think that was a big challenge.
What did you learn from using Adobe programs?
Ga Eun Choi: I learned more about various Adobe tools and features that I didn’t know. And also, I learned about how to use Adobe tools more effectively.
Ahyeon Kim: Through Adobe Badge Training, I was able to learn about Adobe’s various tools, especially by creating a website related to this project. I was able to access technical aspects such as photo placement and content insertion.
Yujeong Kim: I learned how to grab people’s attention when creating web pages and presentations using Adobe programs. It was new and useful to be able to select a color as the theme of the presentation and to create and organize a web page by designing my own font.