AAF selects four advertising students for diversity, equity, and inclusion program

AAF students

Updated 2/15/2024

Four seniors in the University of Illinois chapter of the American Advertising Federation were named to the American Advertising Federation’s Most Promising Multicultural Students Class of 2024—an honor given to only 50 students each year throughout the United States. Honorees include advertising majors Aniya Davis, Lauren Jenkins, Naomi Muuzic, and Olivia Wallace (pictured above). 

The selected students participated in an industry immersion program with the highest-level industry executives and companies in New York on February 4-9, 2024. The program included professional development and personal branding workshops, the "Building Bridges for Our Future" Awards Ceremony and Luncheon, and Recruiter's Expo.

Davis on Times Square
AAF's Most Promising Multicultural Students were featured
in Times Square.

“A really big highlight was attending the different agencies and hearing about their work culture, and what they do, and how much they love what they do in the industry,” Davis said. “I think realizing that going into this industry, it’s going to be filled with passion, it’s going to be filled with excitement…really solidified my knowledge [that] this is what I want to do.” 

In 1997, the American Advertising Federation created the Most Promising Multicultural Students program to connect the advertising industry with the nation’s top multicultural college students. Since the program’s inception, the AAF Illinois chapter has had more winners than any other university or college. 

Recognizing the top 50 multicultural college seniors across the nation, the Most Promising program promotes diversity, equity, and inclusion within the advertising industry, giving advertising, media, communications, and tech companies the opportunity to tap into high-achieving talent of diverse college students from across the country.

Each year, students of racial or ethnic diversity from the AAF’s 140+ college chapters apply to the program. Advertising leaders select the highest-achieving diverse seniors to participate. This year’s judging panel included thought leaders with a range of backgrounds and experience and from companies such as Amazon Ads, Ogilvy, Snap, The Trade Desk, Vox Media, and Whirlpool.

The event serves as a recruiting opportunity for industry leaders to develop a diverse group, representing the best from the country to serve as the next generation of advertising leaders. It also offers students invaluable network, learning, and immersion experiences with professionals from top advertisers, media companies, and advertising agencies.

—Faith Lee and Kelly Youngblood