This year's Penn State recruitment campaign is focusing more closely on students themselves rather than alumni, professors, or sports.
The creative, from Decoded Advertising, shows real students to suggest how an idea progresses from its beginnings in a notebook to the broader community and world.
"Rooted in this work is the shared belief in the importance of positive ideas, which helps reinstill a sense of pride in the University," says Matt Rednor, founder, Decoded Advertising. "Every university is focused on the things they do as an institution while the passions of the students come second." He adds, "It’s the 'why-we-do-things' that brings us together to make things happen."
Decoded has shifted Penn State towards this "more authentic approach" since the two started working together in 2016, though Rednor denies this evolution has to do with any lingering fallout from the Sandusky scandal. "People choose and don't choose your university," says Rednor. "People are changing the world. It's the people that help make Penn State unique and their stories are what we want to connect with. When you ask someone why they love Penn State so much, they all have a story and it's not about the institution, it's about the ideas and experiences the university helped foster."
The TV spots will run during each of Penn State's football games on ABC/ESPN and BigTen Networks, while the digital/social component will be national.