Contact: Tom Parisi, NIU Office of Public Affairs
November 8, 2007
DeKalb, Ill. — Two teams of Northern Illinois University students are among the finalists in Chipotle Mexican Grill’s student advertising contest, “30 Seconds of Fame.”
The students’ 30-second video ads, titled “Just the Fax” and “Lucho Libre,” can be found along with the 10 other finalists on Chipotle’s Web site at www.chipotle.com. (Scroll down to “vid contest.”)
The winning entry is expected to be announced Thursday, Nov. 15. The winning team will receive a $15,000 prize, with an additional $15,000 going to the team’s university.
Chris Darkes, a senior communication major from Schaumburg, said the idea for the “Just the Fax” entry came to him in a dream. “I wrote down my dream,” said Darkes, who appears in the spot. “I pitched it to the other members and they liked it, so we just went ahead and filmed it.”
Other students who produced “Just the Fax” are Brittany Samson of Huntley, Sara Honchar of Freeport and Joe Giorgi of Rockford.
“I think it’s pretty exciting,” said Kristen Morrison, a senior communication major from Naperville and member of the team that created the “Lucho Libre” entry. “We looked at a few (videos) from last year’s contest and thought we could do something that would measure up.”
“Lucho Libre” team members also include Tom Conlon of Joliet, Nick Ziolkowski of Carpentersville, Steven Stein of Buffalo Grove, Geoff Maxfield of DeKalb, Steve Coughlin of Naperville, Ruben Ramos of Wheeling, Kathryn Panger of South Elgin, Matt Weinstein of Glen Ellyn and Matt Kososki of Downers Grove.
Both teams are made up of members of the NIU Student Film and Video Association.
“The students did everything. They chose their teams, wrote the scripts and did all the production work,” said Laura Vazquez, a professor in the Department of Communication and adviser to the association. “I think they did a great job. The videos are very creative and well-produced.”
Vazquez said Chipotle sent invitations to more than 70 universities to encourage participation in the student video contest.
“To have two of the top 12 spots is pretty amazing,” Vazquez said. “It’s all about talent. And we have it right here at NIU.”