On Friday, Oct. 13, 2023, business majors from the fields of marketing, accounting, and finance from Washington Adventist University (WAU) joined the 2nd annual DC Direct Innovation Challenge. Sponsored by the United States Postal Service and in partnership with Capital One, the event saw participation from regional universities including Bowie State, Georgetown, and the University of Maryland.
Students were introduced to several Capital One executives and received insights on integrated marketing and innovations. Notably, they met the Postmaster General of the USPS, Louis LeJoy. LeJoy spoke about his vision for the USPS: aiming for it to be the nation’s top employer and preferred delivery provider. Highlighting the reach of the USPS, LeJoy mentioned it delivers mail to over 300 million individuals through 19,000 delivery centers by 10 a.m. daily.
The day’s primary challenge was for students to devise and showcase a marketing strategy promoting the Capital One SavorOne credit card to college students via three distinct marketing channels. Emphasis was given to direct mail, challenging students to draft a mockup for a direct mail item. Working in teams from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m., students developed their strategies.
WAU’s team notably stood out. Their direct mail designs were both innovative and engaging, with their presentation incorporating a unique element of roleplay. The experience was highly beneficial for the students, with many expressing eagerness to join again next year and post-graduation.
Dr. Baldwin plans to maintain collaboration with the event organizers, ensuring continued participation in the coming years. Such real-world experiences align with WAU’s Business Department’s goals: preparing students to be ethical leaders in the international business scene. On Oct. 27, 2023, the Business Department’s faculty and students are set to visit the International Monetary Fund (IMF) for another immersive experience. This embodies the spirit of Washington Adventist University.