With internship season upon us, CPB is testing out a new way to get fresh talent through its doors.
Enter “CPB Crash Course,” a six-week program that encourages anyone with a penchant for creativity, “even people who may lack a traditional agency education,” to apply. Those who are interested are asked to provide a YouTube video that explains why they should be chosen, as well as a 500-character statement. Candidates also have the option to submit their social media handles and a link to their portfolio website.
This year’s program will run from July 15 through Aug. 23. Six people will ultimately be chosen, but only one will receive a six-month contract at CPB or complimentary attendance to Denver Ad School at the end of the course. The team will spend their six weeks working on Good Spread, an organic peanut butter brand that provides ready-to-use therapeutic food to a malnourished child for every jar sold. Shared housing and a stipend will be provided to the six who are accepted.
Alex Bogusky, who returned to the agency he helped build last year after an eight-year hiatus, said that while CPB has in the past focused on recruiting university and ad school grads for its internships, it now wants to “open it up beyond that to include really anybody that knocks our socks off with a two-minute video.” According to Bogusky, decisions on who makes the cut will largely be based on the video submissions.
“We’re looking for bloggers, vloggers, social media influencers, rocket scientists, filmmakers, editors, biologists, lawyers, account executives, realtors, grandparents, bike mechanics, etc.,” he said. “And of course, university and ad school students.”
A promo video for Crash Course opens with Bogusky commenting that internships are “fucked” before he goes on to explain the new model and the perks that come along with it.
Tom Adams, executive creative director at CPB, said the program offers “an entry point for the misfits, renegades and the beautiful weirdos” that may or may not fit the traditional ad school model.
“Now this doesn’t mean we are excluding ad school students; we are just offering this program under a different set of criteria,” he said. “Instead of submitting ‘your book,’ we are asking for your Instagram posts, Twitter feed, a video and any other content you may have out in the world.”
As the industry as a whole continues to grapple with diversity, it seems as though approaches like this one have the potential to attract, or at least pique the interest of, candidates from various backgrounds. To that end, Bogusky said that CPB is putting money behind the effort to ensure that it reaches people outside of the industry.
“Our agency social channels and my own are stuck squarely in the industry bubble. So we’re also doing a paid campaign to reach beyond the typical ad world,” said Bogusky. “We’re hopeful and excited to start checking out the applications.”