It was an unexpected feat.

“It was a huge shock. I think we can all agree on that,” Gab Sadicon, MINT Marketing student and Junior Marketing Association (JMA) member, said, describing the moment that they qualified at a marketing competition hosted by De La Salle University (DLSU), Manila.

Four MINT JMA members—Multimedia Arts student Aia Arkoncel, together with Marketing students Sadicon, Nichole Cruz, and Luigi Villacorta—bagged the grand prize at De [La Salle] Marketing Approach to National Development (DeMAND) 2018 last December 1. This event was sponsored by BAYO, a local fashion retail brand.

It was after their recent project, a Christmas gig at MINT College, when MINT JMA huddled together to plan for the next semester. It was their external vice president, Wayna Tolenada, who brought up DeMAND 2018. Originally, the marketing organization formed two groups of four—with Sadicon, Arkoncel, Villacorta, and Cruz making up MINT-A.

The competition’s theme was ‘Fashion Sustainability.’ Four other teams competed against them in creating a campaign for BAYO’s advocacy in the final round. Despite being swamped with finals week and various org projects, the MINT team managed to come through.

“We sent in our submission at 11:58 PM in the evening, when our deadline was 11:59 PM [...] We imagined the judges laughing at us for submitting so late, and then reading our paper and seeing how sad it was. But no. We received the [confirmation] email the following day,” Sadicon shared.

Aia said that they only had “almost a day” to come up with a major idea for the proposal. “We only even met once as a team to hear each other’s pitches and to talk about it personally,” she added.

Luigi supported her statement by sharing that being online was their saving grace in the whole experience. “Through group chat, Google Docs…we did that, just to be able to discuss what we’re going to do. Imagine, a group chat six hours long!” he said in jest.

Their winning entry was centered on MINT’s belief in collaboration and community. “It was a simple proposal. We presented it in a straighforward manner, and we understood what ‘collaboration’ really is,” Nichole explained.

Their campaign, called “Beyond BAYO,” proposed for the brand to turn over their excess materials to small clothing companies across the country, which could be used as raw materials for products.  These would then be sold as curated collections at BAYO stores, thus creating a community of small local retailers who can showcase their craftsmanship through BAYO’s platform. Through this, the brand can continue their legacy as a top local brand.

“I’m really proud of the campaign we made. It was feasible enough to be a real thing. I believe that simple ideas can have a great impact,” Aia said. “Our campaign was ultimately about coming together to make the world a better place, and that is something [that] MINT has taught us,” she added.

Nichole recalled a funny moment wherein a member of DLSU’s JMA began hinting at them that they would win. “We were like, ‘No! Please don’t jinx it for us!’” she said, laughing. “We were caught off-guard since we’re already thankful we got to present our entry,” she added.

For Gab, this feat was the best thing that happened to them. “We aren’t just representing MINT, but also our organization (JMA). It felt good because we’re not only putting MINT on the radar, but also we’re putting our organization on the map as well.” W