Re-establishing a university’s worth.


NJCU (New Jersey City University) is a state university located in Jersey City, NJ, offering more than 40 undergraduate and 29 graduate programs. They serve a multi-cultural and largely non-traditional student base and are one of the least expensive universities in the state. NJCU is primarily a commuter school with very limited student housing.


NJCU conducted two independent studies to analyze the quality of their brand image. The results were disappointing.Faculty morale was low. Student enrollment was declining. Worst of all, the marketplace was not seeing the quality of NJCU.

Our challenge was to change the university’s image and do it with measurable results.


After an in-depth discovery process involving NJCU stakeholders, we created the Unifying Brand Idea, “Rewarding Ambition.”This central and galvanizing idea established a strong foundation on which we built a strong, relevant and resonant creative expression.

The resulting campaign – “Worth it” – drove record, double-digit increases in applications and enrollment.


These increases reversed a four-year trend for both the undergraduate and graduate schools.But "Worth It" did more than affect enrollment; it became the university’s rallying cry. It has adorned speeches by the university President, been printed on campus banners and accompanied every marketing message that was produced. It also boldly answered the media’s current question, “Is college worth the cost?” At NJCU, the answer is a resounding yes.

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