For BIC Class of 2019, THEY'RE the brand

They’re baaaaaaaack! The Famous BIC Identity Guidelines.

With a nod to graphic designer Christopher Doyle, this semester-long project in Professor Gerardo Blumenkrantz and Nancy Tag's Idea Development course not only allows for personal reflection and analysis, but forces students to develop some basic digital design skills some for the first time. A requirement of the project is that all students use Adobe Photoshop and InDesign.

After the final presentations on November 15th, Professor Tag asked the question: "Before this assignment, who had never touched Adobe's InDesign software?" 90% of the class raised their hands. And yet, the results were quite amazing. For a larger sample of student ID Guidelines, go to our Bechance page portfolio page (later in December).

BIC Open House. Admissions Fee Waiver. Curious?

If you -- or a colleague -- are searching for a "get your hands dirty" master's degree in communications, let us introduce you to a new kind of graduate program. Our 36-credit, portfolio-driven Master's in Branding + Integrated Communications (BIC) let's you research, think, collaborate, create, and feed your curiosity in three interdisciplinary tracks --  Management & Planning, Creative, and Public Relations.

Curious? On Monday, December 11th, BIC opens its doors to inquisitive candidates interested in applying to the BIC Master's Program for Fall 2018. The afternoon begins at 4:00 in Shepard Hall when Director Nancy R. Tag serves cookies and coffee while giving potential grad students an overview of the BIC Program. Attendees will be rewarded with a FREE admissions application — CCNY will waive the fee to everyone who signs in. Afterwards, the Office of Graduate Admissions will provide a campus tour. 


Stick around. At 5:30PM, BIC holds its first @BIC Lecture of the season: #NotFakeNews >> The effects of a hyper-political environment on brands and the media. Is Fake News REAL? What's the origin of the term? How is it used as a strategic tool in our hyper-political environment? Michael Marinello, the SVP of Strategic Communications for Turner, and Frank Washkuch, News Editor at PRWeek, will discuss why media ethics and best practices are more important than ever.

Immediately following, candidates are invited to sit in on the Final Presentations of B2000 Research and Awareness class taught by Y&R EVP Belle Frank.  Hungry for more? Grab a bite in the neighborhood. Mention CCNY BIC for a special 10% Off Discount at FUMO, our favorite Italian restaurant, at 139th & Amsterdam for Dinner.  Valid 12/11/17 only.    

#NotFakeNews @BIC Lecture

On Monday, December 11th, the Branding + Integrated Communications graduate program will sponsor its first @BIC Lecture of the season: #NotFakeNews >> The effects of a hyper-political environment on brands and the media.

Is Fake News REAL? What's the origin of the term? How is it used as a strategic tool in our hyper-political environment? Join the debate as Michael Marinello, the SVP of Strategic Communications for Turner, and Frank Washkuch, News Editor at PRWeek, discuss why media ethics and best practices are more important than ever in this fascinating @BIC Lecture.

MONDAY, DECEMBER 11th, 5:30 to 6:30PM at The City College of New York, Shepard Hall, 160 Convent Avenue, Room S104, New York City.

BIC’s Castro Desroches’ Droga5 Film Awarded an Athena

This year, the 3% Conference launched the Athena Advertising Awards in partnership with the Athena Film Festival, an annual festival held at Barnard College in New York City that celebrates the stories of remarkable women. 3% founder Kat Gordon told The DRUM that the goal of the Athena Advertising Awards is to recognize ads that “depict strong, bold women from all walks of life, moving through the world with ambition, moxie, courage, and resilience.”

Among the inaugural winners was Droga5’s Under Armour campaign “Unlike Any” featuring Misty Copeland with art direction by Castro Desroches (BIC '16). Castro started at Droga5 right after graduating from BIC and just before his portfolio was featured in an AdWeek story titled “This Art Director Put His Entire Portfolio on Instagram.”

Other winners of the first Athena Advertising Awards were JetBlue for its ‘Flybabies’ experiment, Boeing for ‘Women Make Us Better,’the Cindy Gallop chatbot created by R/GA to mark Equal Pay Day and Equinox’s ‘Commit To Something’ campaign. The awards were sponsored by Morgan Stanley.

Paying it Forward -- BICster Style

From BIC Program Director, Nancy R. Tag >> Here's how life works (when it works). Years ago, when I was getting my Master's in Media Studies at The New School for Social Research, I enrolled in two different courses taught by Dr. Thom Gencarelli.  Education is about getting multiple points of view, so I always sought out new professors and experiences. But Thom was the rare exception. He was a spectacular teacher -- brilliant and kind with insightful instruction. Years later, about the time that I started as an Assistant Professor at City College, I found out that Thom had moved on to become Chair in the Department of Communications at Manhattan College. We kept in touch.

In the meantime, I had the good fortune of having a few "repeat" students of my own. Javier Garcia was one. As an undergraduate in City College's Ad/PR Program, Javier had enrolled in three of my courses: Ad Copy, Ad Planning, and the Ad/PR Workshop. After graduation, Javier got a job at Y&R in account management. He was a real success story and I figured that the next time our paths would cross, it would be at some industry awards show. Instead, he decided to apply for a spot in my newly launched master's program in Branding + Integrated Communications. So I saw him A LOT -- and happily so. He was in our first BIC graduating class and went on to start his own business, SUYO, "an active apparel brand with a social conscience, dedicated to making a lifestyle of health and fitness accessible for all."

But here's the real "pay it forward" part: a few semesters ago, I got a call from my former professor Thom Gencarelli. He was looking for an instructor who could teach his Advanced Advertising course. Javier immediately came to mind. After pitching the possibility to him, he jumped on the subway and headed up to the Manhattan College campus in Riverdale, met Thom, and got an offer. As I'd expect from Javier, he turned the syllabus up a notch and into a dynamic course that blends academic learning with real world projects -- something he learned at CCNY.

As Javier says: "My goal in to provide the kinds of knowledge and intensive work experience students might encounter by having them pitch for a client's business by creating their own in-class communications agencies." The class project was recently featured in the Manhattan College Newspaper. Read the whole story here.

Nice, huh?

BICsters are not just industrious, creative, and smart, but they are also among the most generous people I know. So I'm happy to share this happy story about Javier Garcia, BIC Class of 2015. It is one on a long list of amazing tales of BICsters making an impact by giving back and paying it forward -- BIC style...

Novum Features CCNY's 170th Anniversary Branding

This month’s issue of novum features the amazing branding work that celebrates The City College of New York's 170th anniversary. Inspired by BICsters Marta Mugica, Rocío Rivera Iglesias, and Namrata Kupte-Jadhav  (BIC '17) and designed by BIC Professor Gerardo Blumenkrantz and BIC Board Member Gustavo Stecher along with his team at menos es mas, the comprehensive effort was unveiled at the annual Presidential Awards Gala which took place in May 2017 in The Great Hall. 

The article highlights the way in which the branding reflects City College’s unique heritage and visionary mission: 

“Since its very beginnings, CCNY has stood for open access to education and equal opportunities. The college, nicknamed the ‘poor man’s Harvard’ is proud to have ten Nobel Prize winners among its graduates who, like many students today, were children from humble family backgrounds and the first in their families to attend university. The old visual identity however did not suitably convey the core values of progress, inclusion and innovation and so the college leadership, on the occasion of the college’s 170th anniversary, decided to rebrand. Students and faculty of CCNY’s Branding + Integrated Communications Graduate Program (BIC) joined together with the menos es mЗs design bureau to create a visual identity that would unite values, tradition and progressivity. Together with the students, the Buenos Aires-based designers set off in search of a symbol that might suitably represent the college...”

First published in 1924, novum is known around the globe as a leading and influential design magazine. Each month this bilingual journal presents the very best in graphic design, illustration, photo-design, corporate design, paper, packaging, advertising and typography. novum also spotlights new talents and the latest trends. For over 90 years novum has been providing professionals with an inspiring mix of international graphic design and advertising, and it also delivers a unique haptic experience in terms of an exciting array of cover materials and treatments.

BIC is proud to be recognized by novum, especially for this project which spotlights CCNY as well as BIC’s cross-disciplinary and collaborative approach to projects. We applaud the combined efforts of BIC students and faculty along with the brilliance of BIC Board Member Gustavo Stecher and his entire team at menos es mas. Thanks also to the vision of CCNY President Vince Boudreau and Senior Advisor Dee Dee Mozeleski.

To see the full project, link HERE to the menos es mas site. Watch the logo come to life in this video.

BICster on Winning Team in Nestle Skin Health SHIELD Hackathon

This semester, the Zahn Innovation Center teamed up with Nestle Skin Health SHIELD to bring together different departments and programs across the City College campus (from BIC to the CUNY Medical School) to form interdisciplinary teams and compete in a one day Hackathon. Competitors got serious at a Design Sprint on September 8th and then came together for an all-day Hackathon on October 6th at Nestle Skin Health SHIELD headquarters in midtown Manhattan.

Teams were tasked to come up with design solutions -- from apps or wearables, to skincare products, to marketing campaigns or multi-media projects -- that address some aspect of skin health. Students interested healthcare, technology, dermatology, engineering, research, business, or just in healthy skin, joined forces to build something innovative.

One BICster was among the 13 teams to physically pitch  their ideas on Friday evening. Guess which team won? The one with the BICster!! Surabhi Govindarajan (BIC '18) and her team “Skin the Know” won first prize for creating an app that recognizes the ingredients in skincare products and helps consumer to understand their efficacy. First prize included a $3,000 award.

The Hackathon is the culmination of a partnership between Lindsay Siegel, Director of the Zahn Center, and CCNY alum Dr. Warren Winkelman, Senior Medical Director and Head of Medical Innovation at SHIELD. As he’s stated about the Hackathon approach: “Events like this represent what SHIELD is about: multi-disciplinary and multi-generational collaboration to advance skin wellness through innovation, both low tech and high tech.” BIC Program Director Nancy R. Tag and CUNY School of Public Health Professor Chris Palmedo joined Dr. Winkelman and Aaron Windfield as judges of the pitch.

About Nestlé Skin Health SHIELD
Nestlé Skin Health SHIELD is a global network of innovation and education hubs gathering today’s most creative and visionary thinkers from diverse disciplines to generate, develop, and incubate ideas to advance skin health for tomorrow. SHIELD explores creative partnerships, new concepts, and technologies to help preserve lifelong skin health; mitigate the emergence of skin conditions; and integrate the skin dimension into the public consciousness, discourses on policy, and the organization of age-friendly spaces.