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ISC Competition Team, Round 2

Grehan Building

ISC Competition Team, Round 2

If I could title this blog post, I would call it, “Running on 2 Hours of Sleep, But It’s Not That Bad.” Unfortunately, that’s a bit long, and I don’t think it would interest any of you.

It’s currently 4 a.m., and I haven’t stepped outside since I got the team Dairy Queen at 9 p.m. We’ve been here for 10 hours already, but it honestly doesn’t feel like we’ve been here for that long. The book is due in six hours, and we feel like we’re drowning in our to-do list. At the same time we can see the finish line ahead of us. Two of the team members are sleeping on the floor of the Maggie Room, the media plan team is upstairs in what we’ve called “the War Room,” I’m downstairs in room 52 with Garrett, and overall we’ve taken over this building as our own in the last 48 hours.

I know you’re probably thinking that this sounds miserable and also wondering why I’m writing this and not helping the team. Let me answer the latter first by saying that we’re at a standstill until the girl making copies of the current edition of the book comes back for us to edit. To address the first part of that sentence though, it’s not miserable at all. Yes, we’ve all had our freak-outs and breakdowns. We’ve all taken naps, we’ve all gotten frustrated with one another, but we have also gotten so much work done. I’ll be honest, there’s nothing quite like spending 20 some odd hours with your team members to make you all feel close to one another. At this point we’ve seen each other cry and get angry. We’ve hated our friends and apologized all in the same breath, but we’re just sleep deprived so we didn’t mean it. I won’t pretend that it’s all roses and rainbows, but it truly has become the greatest experience of my life.

The past two weeks I’ve been working with the media plan team, and I haven’t ever taken a media planning class. Thankfully the head of the media plan team, Ryan, has been simultaneously teaching me and working on his own tasks. With the book being due at 10 a.m. though, it was decided that I should stop trying to figure out the budget and I should go back to writing and design, which made me happier than I’ve been the last two weeks. The budget was interesting, and I definitely learned a lot that I can use in my career, but it wasn’t making me feel very “Snapply,” the named we coined based off our client, Snapple, for that quirky and fun feeling.

With the end of the book in sight and our body copy on its way to sounding clever and unique, this project finally feels like it’s coming together. After spring break we’ll have to edit our book and some things will get completely cut out, but it’ll be a learning process that will make us all much better ISC professionals. Once that is done we’ll have just about a week and a half to put together our presentation and 20 minute speech. While we’re glad this part is finally almost over, there’s still so much work left to do.

Since the timeframe is so short, we will be working to create the presentation and writing the speech at the same time, and most of the speech will have to be memorized by the presenters in the 24 hours we’re in Columbus for the District 5 Competition. It’s going to be tough and tensions will run high, but there’s also a question and answer portion after the presentation, so we have to be prepared for any question they may ask us, which means everyone has to know the details of this book backwards and forwards. Once (if) we win at districts we will have a regional competition during the first week in May.  This is a conference call with nationals as they ask us questions about our book.  From there, we will go to nationals in Anaheim, Calif., on June 1 to compete against the top ten teams in the country. Of course, we have to win at districts first, but Dr. Eckman says she thinks we have the potential to win at nationals, so that has us all feeling pretty great. Honestly, we’re all just hoping we get to nationals so we can spend the day after competition visiting Harry Potter World. Okay that’s not really the only reason we want to go to nationals, but it would be pretty fun to finish off our Competition Team experience with a day trip together.