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Cornell University

Cornell University

Cornell’s School of Hotel Administration (SHA) is the gold standard in hospitality and business—and needs the brand narrative to match.

Situation

Cornell’s School of Hotel Administration is a globally recognized, best-in-class hospitality school—but being called a “hotel” school has created misperceptions about what the school offers. SHA partnered with 160over90 to shake up perceptions of what hospitality means—and claim its rightful position as the leader in hospitality and a thought leader within Cornell.

Solution

We performed an extensive discovery across SHA to uncover fundamental truth. In doing so, we recognized that SHA’s alumni are some of the most influential people in hospitality, and their faculty and Centers & Institutes are shaping the way food and beverage, entertainment, real estate, and finance companies operate globally. This led us to a provocative insight: not only is SHA the authority in hospitality, but they are also “The Official Hosts of Tomorrow.” With that strategic positioning, we reimagined the SHA brand through a collection of video, print, digital, and experiential pieces that tell the story of what it means to be the world’s most adventurous—and celebrated—business school…and how the future of hospitality is being shaped by SHA.

Results

The new School of Hotel Administration brand has helped SHA’s perception match Cornell’s. In addition to a broad rollout across campus, at SHA orientation, and online, our work was featured at the renowned “Icons and Innovators” awards celebration in New York City. Graduate and undergraduate programs are seeing significant spikes in applications and a diversity of applicants. Alumni are also coming to SHA asking how their stories can be featured as part of the campaign.

Increase in Undergraduate Applications
Increase in Graduate Applications
Increase in Diversity of Applicants