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Ohio Northern design students, faculty attend marketing seminar

October—Four Ohio Northern University advertising and graphic design students and a faculty member will be attending this year’s “Zingerman’s Marketing Secrets” seminar to be held in Ann Arbor, Michigan. Senior Nicole Bregar, Junior Caitlyn Busch, and Sophomores Rebecca Carman and Beth Tremains will represent the art & design department at the annual event from October 13–14. Accompanied by Prof. Brit Rowe, they will take part in a variety of sessions designed to enhance their professional skills including leadership, branding, advertising and networking.

Zingerman’s was founded in March 1982 by Ari Weinzweig and Paul Saginaw as a small corner delicatessen in Ann Arbor. Today, they are a community of eight unique businesses, with almost 600 employees and over 45 million dollars in annual revenue. Still in Ann Arbor, the company plans to grow to include 12–18 businesses, all in the Ann Arbor area.

During its 30+ years in business, Zingerman’s has been recognized nationally, not just for our exceptional products and customer service, but also for their unique business model. Inc. Magazine called them the “Coolest Small Company in America,” and they have been featured in the Harvard Business Review and on MSNBC for their business practices. In his book, Small Giants, Bo Burlingham cited Zingerman’s as a model for organizations that define success more creatively than just “getting as big as we can as fast as we can.” And Saveur magazine lauded Zingerman’s for its impeccable customer service.

With the founding of ZingTrain in 1994, Zingerman’s began to formally share their approach to business through 2-day seminars, 4-hour workshops and also books and training DVDs. The ZingTrain team now works out of a custom-designed training facility on the south side of Ann Arbor, near Zingerman’s Bakehouse, Creamery and Coffee Company and across town from Zingerman’s Deli.

The tools, techniques and methodologies taught at ZingTrain have been tested and honed by implementation and constant improvement at each and every one of the eight Zingerman’s businesses. Our clients tell us that while many things make the ZingTrain experience special, one of the most important is the fact that they learn about systems in our classroom and then see those very tools in action when they visit our businesses.

This year’s ZingTrain seminar focuses on Zingerman’s branding secrets. “We believe that all a powerful marketing strategy takes is knowing who you are, what you’re selling and how you want to sell it,” explains Maggie Bayless, one of the managing partners for ZingTrain. “We don’t think it takes a lot of money. And if you’re willing to invest in the right systems, we don’t even think it has to take a lot of time. We believe all those things because they’ve worked for us for 30 years.”

The mission of the Ohio Northern graphic design program is to prepare undergraduate students to become socially and environmentally aware leaders in the field of visual communication. Focusing on development and mastery of conceptual and technical skills in graphic design, illustration, and advertising as well as studio electives, cross disciplinary courses and collaborative experiences prepare students for the convergence of the design fields and for positions as creative directors across a broad spectrum of increasingly media-based careers. Graduates from the program have gone on to work at companies such as Wunderman Design, Foothold Design, Smithsonian Institution, Milan Historical Museum, NiSource, Bubbles Academy, and Recess Creative.

Founded in 1871, Ohio Northern University is a competitive, comprehensive university affiliated with the United Methodist church. ONU is one of the few private universities to offer a distinctive blend of nationally ranked liberal arts and professional programs in its five colleges.

Originally designated as the School of Fine Arts and later the College of Fine Arts, the art & design program was first established as an independent academic unit at Ohio Northern in 1878, largely as an outgrowth of course work in engineering and architectural drawing. Today, Ohio Northern offers both the Bachelor of Arts and Bachelor of Fine Arts degrees with majors in advertising design, art education, graphic design and studio arts with concentrations in two-dimensional, three-dimensional and pre-art therapy. The department of A&D holds memberships in national organizations such as the National Art Education Association, College Art Association, Foundations in Art: Theory and Education, AIGA: The Professional Association for Design, and the National Council on Education of Ceramic Arts. The department is recognized in the “Creative Colleges: A Guide for Student Actors, Artists, Dancers, Musicians and Writers” as one of the best creative programs nationwide. For additional information about the department of art & design or the University’s 2014–15 Arts Exhibition Season, contact the department at 419.772.2160.