Given the desperate need for more undergraduate students for all seven System campuses, it would have made sense for the System to promote itself by a Superbowl TV ad. The “One University” vision–to date, bereft of many specifics, but who’s counting?–would have brought the System to the attention of countless prospective students and families who might never have thought of any of those seven campuses for higher education opportunities.
Just as the System’s ongoing quest for one accreditation for all seven campuses– despite their enormous differences in size and mission–will put us on the map if successful, so a Superbowl TV ad would provide unprecedented attention and likely lots more students. One sees ads for major universities during televised big-time football and basketball games. Why not extend this to the Superbowl?
True, Superbowl ads are rather expensive, but there are funding sources that could help to pay for an ad. Reducing the millions of dollars spent annually by the System on outside consultants, on outside lawyers, on failed foreign student recruitment projects, and on hefty pay raises for top System administrators who were mere candidates for jobs elsewhere that they didn’t get, would surely get us much of the way toward an ad.
I sincerely hope that the powers that be will consider a Superbowl ad for next year—even if, God forbid, the New England Patriots are not in the game.