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Concordia Chicago Students Create Campaign for National Marketing Competition


ST. LOUIS, Mo. (April 20, 2012)—Concordia University Chicago, River Forest, Ill., students Maya Williams, Savonte Hunt, Jacob Hawthorne and Jacob Courter researched and created a comprehensive marketing campaign for the first-ever Lutheran Church Extension Fund (LCEF) National Student Marketing Competition.

The students traveled to St. Louis with faculty advisor Elisabeth E. Dellegrazie, assistant professor of marketing, and presented their findings and a plan to attract new and younger investors to LCEF. They competed with Concordia University Irvine, Calif.; Concordia University, St. Paul, Minn.; and Concordia University Texas, Austin.

Based on the research it conducted and gathered, the Chicago team based its marketing plan on Prov. 26:2, “Train a child in the way he should go and when he is old, he will not turn from it.” The team collaborated and created a core message of “Let’s Grow Together,” emphasizing the need to educate young people on the importance of saving early and further raise awareness of the organization’s mission. A video was created for the presentation, along with promotion materials and a social media plan to support the message.

“The LCEF Marketing Competition was an enriching event for the business students from Concordia University Chicago,” Dellegrazie said. “It provided a challenging project with ‘real-world’ experience.  This experiential learning sets Concordia University Chicago apart from other universities.”

Each team pitched their ideas to a panel of judges that represented LCEF, the Michigan District Church Extension Fund, Concordia Plan Services and two St. Louis area communications and marketing agencies.  The Concordia Irvine team took first place, St. Paul second and Texas third.

“Each university presented a unique, yet descriptive approach. I especially appreciate the creativity and attention to detail,” said Becca Jones, senior vice president of marketing, LCEF. “The students’ inventive thinking will serve them well as they prepare for their futures. We congratulate them all for a job well done.”

Included in the day’s activities were tours of the LCEF offices and the Lutheran Church—Missouri Synod’s (LCMS) International Center in St. Louis. Students enjoyed getting a sense of the history of the Synod and a more personal and up-close connection to the people that serve the church.  

Among the goals of creating the competition, LCEF President/CEO Rich Robertson said LCEF hoped to enhance academic work and provide students an opportunity to “explore careers in ministry-related organizations, such as LCEF.”

“LCEF superbly orchestrated a national marketing competition that brought together bright, energetic and confident Concordia students,” Dellegrazie said. She added that she would be bringing students back again next year.

To find out more about LCEF and the competition, visit or

To learn more about Concordia University Chicago, visit

About Concordia University Chicago

Concordia University Chicago is a liberal arts-based Christian university in the Lutheran tradition. Through its College of Arts and Sciences, College of Business, College of Education, and College of Graduate and Innovative Programs, Concordia offers more than 100 areas of study in small classes taught by professors who are passionate about teaching and student success.

Concordia University Chicago was named as the second fastest growing campus among private nonprofit master’s institutions nationally by The Chronicle of Higher Education’s 2011 Almanac Edition. For the third consecutive year, combined undergraduate and graduate enrollment has exceeded more than 5,000 students. Concordia University Chicago is located in River Forest, 10 miles west of downtown Chicago. Learn more at

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