University of Hartford Pandora Challenge with Andrew McMahon & Dear Jack Foundation

September 17th, 2018 | In partnership with Andrew McMahon and the Dear Jack Foundation, presented with University of Hartford #PandoraChallenge 

The University of Hartford is thrilled to participate in the 2018 Real Industry Pandora Challenge. This event presents the real-world intersection of music, marketing and social advocacy to our students as an exercise that will better prepare them to enter the workforce career ready. This is truly an educational experience that cannot be had any other way...The opportunities for innovative teaching and critical thinking are truly endless and we can’t wait to see our students grow from this collaboration.
— Gabe Herman, Assistant Professor of Music Industry,University of Hartford

Photo Credit: Jonathan Olson

On Thursday, September 20th, University of Hartford students came together for a kickoff event in partnership with Andrew McMahon and the Dear Jack Foundation for the Pandora Challenge. The Dear Jack Foundation provides impactful programming that directly benefits adolescents and young adults diagnosed with cancer in order to improve quality of life and create positive health outcomes from treatment to survivorship for patients and their families.

At this event, students formed teams to create music marketing and playlist campaigns to support the Dear Jack Foundation in positively impacting the lives of young people. This is the power of music and technology powering social impact.

The Real Industry Pandora Challenge events give students a look behind the curtain into real-world artist marketing technologies and scenarios. This is the type of work they can put on resumes during future internship and job searches.
— Heather Ellis, Manager, Artist Marketing at Pandora

Photo Credit: Jonathan Olson

The assignment is to create, launch, market, and optimize playlists that drives awareness to the Dear Jack Foundation. The playlists will include an introduction from Andrew McMahon and student-created voice messages that educate listeners about the non-profit’s mission. The student teams have three weeks to grow their listenership and influence their audience to become activated in the conversation around the power of music in transforming lives and access to music resources for all.

The University of Hartford Pandora Challenge wrapped up on October 11th! Congratulations to the winning team.

Sarah Watts - Music Management - Class of 2019

Gianna Bielenda - Music Management - Class of 2019

On November 13, 2018, Pandora’s executive team invited the winner team for a half-day mentorship session with:

Tony Calzaretta, VP Listener Product & Design, Bill Crandall, VP Editorial Content, Shamal Ranasinghe, VP Catalog & Creator Product, Lauren Nagel, VP Executive Creative Director, Beckie Wood, VP Content Programming, Catalog & Insights and Heather Ellis, Manager, Artist Marketing.

In addition, Pandora shared the team’s winning playlists across its social media outlets.

For more on the Pandora Challenges, check out Pandora’s article: