Students win $5,000 prize in MSU media competition


Over the spring 2012 commencement weekend, the winners of the College of Communication Arts and Sciences Media Sandbox Creative Challenge finally saw their semesterlong project pay off.

The Media Sandbox Creative Challenge was a competition to create a brand for the Media Sandbox academic program inside the College of Communication Arts and Sciences.

The new academic program began during the 2011-12 academic year and was co-created by telecommunication, information studies and media professor Bob Albers, along with former head of Discovery Networks Clark Bunting and Craig Murray, owner of mOcean Entertainment in Hollywood.

“It was a challenge to have students work in teams to create a brand for Media Sandbox (that would) be exciting to high school students,” Albers said.

“One Branch Too Far” came in first place, and won the contest’s $5,000 prize.

The team was made up of advertising and media arts and technology senior Robert Freeman Smith, advertising senior Vicki Zou and recent alumnus Ahreum Jung.

One of the teams in the competition consisted of current and former employees of The State News, including current editor-in-chief Matt Hallowell.

Smith said the Media Sandbox program tries to push the power of storytelling to different mediums and majors in the college.

“(The) main focus is to allow freshmen, in their very first year, to get hands-on experience actively doing things that people in that career would be doing,” Smith said.

Journalism professor Darcy Greene, was an adviser for “One Branch Too Far,” and said the group’s creativity separated them from the pack.

“All of the teams had to follow the same format in terms of having a video, posters and more, but each project was executed differently,” she said.

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