Conestoga news

November 19, 2020 10:43 AM

Student designs support local charity

Second-year students in Conestoga's Advertising and Marketing Communications program collaborated with local charity Crieff Hills Retreat Centre on a special project to support the organization's fundraising efforts.

Students in the Advertising and Marketing Communications program collaborated with local charity Crieff Hills on a project to support the organization's fundraising efforts. Student Ana Blondin’s design was featured in the November Shirt Sale Campaign.

Located outside Guelph, the historic retreat and conference facility provides visitors with a safe space for spiritual renewal and leadership development. As a result of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, Crieff Hills faces long-term disruption with significant loss in bookings. In an effort to help offset losses, the organization turned to Conestoga students for help designing shirts to be sold as part of a fundraising campaign.

Stephanie Banks, an administrative assistant at Crieff Hills and a 2017 graduate of the college's Public Relations diploma program, approached design professor Melissa Smith with the idea -- Smith taught Banks during her time at Conestoga. Together, they developed a project that had students submit designs for a chance to be featured in the campaign.

"As the pandemic continues, many of us have a greater sense of local connection," said Rev. Dr. Kristine O'Brien, director at Crieff Hills. "We were very excited to work with the talented students right on our doorstep."

Students were given one month to create a shirt design based on a creative brief provided by Crieff Hills. Designs needed to embody the organization's mission and philosophy as a peaceful place to stay and grow, and include a white or light-coloured graphic for a dark background as well as the organization's logo. Crieff Hills selected three designs, one used in their November Shirt Sale Campaign and the others for future fundraising efforts.

Students Ana Blondin, Amanda LeBold and Kavan Whitfold produced the winning designs. Blondin's stylized Take a Hike design was featured in the November fundraiser, which has sold over 70 shirts and raised close to $900.

"Real-world projects give students the opportunity to work with clients, meet deadlines and learn how to capture needs in a short period of time," said Smith. "Collaborating with local organizations like Crieff Hills not only helps develop students' skills and knowledge while they build portfolios, but it provides an opportunity to support our community."

The Advertising and Marketing Communications program provides students with the opportunity to develop skills for a wide range of communicative professions, learning fundamentals of marketing, sales, media design, and advertising and communication principles for traditional, web and mobile platforms; social media campaigns; public relations; event marketing; and entrepreneurship. Through experiential learning, students actively engage in a dynamic and innovative learning process with opportunities to work with clients and collaborate with industry professionals to learn from real-world experiences.