Sponsor Spotlight

At New Venture Championship, sponsors make all the difference between a small-scale competition and the production that we are able to put on. Columbia Sportswear, the title sponsor of NVC, recently displayed its dedication to the competition and educating the students who run it. 

Allen Hall Public Relations and Allen Hall Advertising, student-run agencies based out of the University of Oregon’s School of Journalism and Communication, are given an opportunity like no other through NVC. The competition provides students in each of these agencies the chance to gain hands-on experience in the public relations and advertising worlds. Both agencies assemble teams of students to manage NVC’s brand across the media.

A few weeks ago, students on the NVC accounts at AHPR and AHA were granted yet another opportunity to step up to the plate—they were asked to present the competition’s budget to Tim Boyle, CEO of our title sponsor, Columbia Sportswear.

While presenting to Mr. Boyle, it became clear to us that the graduate students who participate in NVC must set aside hours of careful planning for their presentations to the judges. After speaking in front of Mr. Boyle and a room full of peers, I can confidently say that we took away several helpful tips:

  1. 1. Preparation is key. We only had one week to pull together a respectable presentation for Mr. Boyle, so we felt the heat. I can only imagine what NVC hopefuls feel as the anticipation for the competition builds. By outlining a list of talking points and filling in the blanks with your own knowledge of your business plan, you will not sound rehearsed or robotic.
  2. 2. Be mindful of your audience. Presenting to a sponsor of NVC was very similar to what the actual contestants will be doing. Be aware of who you are speaking to, be sure to make plenty of eye contact and allow for questions. Proper annunciation and a steady pace are key, and it is important to avoid commercial-y, sing-song tones.
  3. 3. Anticipate. This point is aimed at the question-and-answer portion of a presentation. At the end of our allotted time, Tim Boyle had several in-depth, thoughtful questions for us about the budget for NVC and where certain funds were going. Although we had not prepared for his level of interest in what we were saying, we knew the account well enough to field any fly balls. For those presenting at NVC, it is crucial to brainstorm ahead of time about what might be asked of you and your idea so you can prepare the best possible response.

In addition to Columbia, other NVC’s other sponsors are Tektronix, Blue Star Gas, Kryptiq and Oregon Entrepreneurs Network. Each sponsor is affiliated with a particular round of the competition, and its employees and executives are encouraged to attend each event. NVC looks forward to future partnerships with these sponsors, and is excited about potential opportunities for new companies to join the team!

Written By Nicole Hyslop


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