News & Opinion

Media Design School takes out the 2017 Student Newspaper Advertising Competition

Media Design School takes out the 2017 Student Newspaper Advertising Competition

An insightful campaign created by two students from the Media Design School (MDS) has taken out this year’s top prize at our annual student advertising competition.

With the Student News Media competition attracting over 90 entries across two categories, Diane Hannay, Head of Marketing for News Works, says it’s great to see so many students engaging with news media.

“With social media grabbing so much of this generation’s attention, we have an important role to play to ensure they understand that not everybody has the same media consumption habits as they do.”

This year’s brief was to create a brand campaign for Drive Electric, who have a simple goal - making electric vehicle ownership in NZ mainstream. Students created work that showcased the advantages of electric vehicles and the associated benefits that support New Zealand’s climate change. The brief called for innovation and integration across both print and digital news media platforms and attracted entries from Auckland University of Technology (AUT), Media Design School and the University of Otago’s Brandbach.

The simple yet effective concept ‘Fight Climate Change with Change’ by Izzy Curran and Malik Benbrahim from MDS, “hit the nail on the head” and won the main brief category, taking home the cash prize and the honor of being this year’s student winner.

The campaign was highly praised by the creative judging panel stating, “a unanimous choice for first place from the judges. The insight, that it’s time to start using all the extra weather that climate change is causing to power electric cars really resonated with us – particularly given the extreme weather the world’s been experiencing this year”.

‘Drive Carbon Free’ by Brosnan Ackerman and Trudi Axtens from AUT receive a special mention and was the runner up campaign.

There’s also a top prize awarded in the 48-hour topical category, taken out this year by Ritwik Varma from AUT for his “Covfefe” execution.  The judges commented saying it was “highly topical and quite cleverly executed.”  Holly Sutton-Williams and Ally Tauber from MDS just missed out with their ‘Memories that last forever. And ever, and ever.” topical ad. Judges said it was “a really close call for the winner of the topical – we were divided”.





Client: Drive Electric - Fight Climate Change With Change

Students: Izzy Curran and Malik Benbrahim

School:  Media Design School


Runners Up

Client: Drive Electric – Drive Carbon Free

Students: Brosnan Ackerman and Trudi Axtens

School:  AUT – Auckland University of Technology




Client:  COVFEFE

Students: Ritwik Varma

School:  AUT – Auckland University of Technology


A collection of the work by the 2017 students is available to view at


The 2017 Student Awards judging panel

Matt Williams

Colenso BBDO

Freddie Coltart

Colenso BBDO

Lizzie Baird


Sasha Arandelovic


Mitchell Crowe


Scott Moyes


Mike Felix


Danny Brown


Anita Young


Liz Richards


Thom Darlow


Diane Hannay

News Works NZ


About the Student Newspaper Advertising Awards

The Student Newspaper Advertising Awards are designed to encourage a new generation of creatives to think differently about news media. The media landscape has changed dramatically in recent times and now newsrooms lead the way for journalism that spans multi-media channels, with digital and mobile playing an important part of the mix.

Each year News Works runs a competition for the fresh, young minds at AUT, Media Design School and the University of Otago – Brandbach, to showcase great creative use of news media platforms. This year we partnered with EECA (Energy, Efficiency and Conservation Authority) – Drive Electric to target and inform car buyers about the advantages of electric vehicles and positive benefits by reducing carbon emissions, to support New Zealand’s climate change.


About News Works

News Works promotes New Zealand’s leading mobile, web and print news media brands. With more people reading news media than ever before, we're passionate about promoting leading edge advertising and journalism. We advocate for great news media brands throughout New Zealand like Stuff, The New Zealand Herald, The Dominion Post, The Press, and Otago Daily Times among many others.  Our team offers a broad scope of free service to agencies and marketers including a media booking service for print campaigns, in-depth research, marketing and education. News Works is a commercial entity of the Newspaper Publishers' Association (NPA).


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