Awards
Student Recruitment Publications Packages: Wellington School - Silver Medal

Category 30: Student Recruitment Publications Packages
Wellington School, “We are Wellington”

Contact: Elizabeth P. Steele, communications director, 3650 Reed Rd., Columbus, OH 43220, Phone: (614) 457-7883, e-mail: steele@wellington.org

These materials are the flagship pieces for The Wellington School brand. The look and voice that started with these key pieces is now permeating all of the school’s outreach efforts, from the Web site to the magazine to the capital campaign materials. Embedded in these materials are consistent key messages that reflect Wellington’s philosophy about educating and raising children, “proof points” that give evidence for how these goals are realized, and real-time photographs.

This authenticity is the result of two years of collaboration among marketing professionals and Wellington stakeholders the messages were mined through extensive research and review. The Marketing Committee of the board led a two-year strategic process that included market research with all constituencies. Nearly 100 individual – parents, past parents, alumni, students, and faculty – lent their voices to our collective understanding of what distinguishes Wellington.

These materials incorporate a common vocabulary and a succinct way to convey the value of The Wellington School experience. One message ties them together – “We are Lifelong Learners, Lifelong Leaders.” Wellington is much more than preparation for college; it is preparation for life.

The Wellington School is known for the strength of its community; the educational experience is highly personal. The individual student books were created to convey that strength and to share some of that experience. The “I am Wellington” theme is a compelling and authentic concept that conveys the school’s personal approach to education.

Prospective families are the primary audience for these publications. Since retention is as important as recruitment at Wellington, these materials have been shared with every current family and teacher. In addition, the materials were sent to all alumni as a friend-raising gesture.

Programs Objectives:

  • To express the pride and distinctiveness of The Wellington School
  • To distinguish Wellington among its competitor set
    • To discontinue the practice (internal as well as external) of defining Wellington in relation to the older and more established competitors.
  • To convey the everyday vibrancy of the school, the personal relationships, and the true joy of learning that is instilled and developed.
  • To show pride in the idea of never being finished – that each child, each person is forever striving for more.
  • To explain and illustrate the importance and the value of the school’s emphasis on the individual child and his or her personal definition of excellence.

Results to date: Student retention is at a record high; new student applications are strong and there are waiting lists at some grade levels; faculty morale is high (five teachers were just honored by Ohio Magazine as among the best in the state); the Annual Fund is ahead of schedule; the capital campaign has passed the halfway mark; and Wellington has successfully recruited an outstanding educator to become its next Head of School.

While these outcomes cannot directly be attributed to these materials, they are endorsements of the institution’s strengths which are so effectively expressed through these books and this brand.

The theme of “Lifelong Learners, Lifelong Leaders” accurately and succinctly expresses Wellington’s purpose of education for a lifetime and leading by example and with purpose. The philosophy statements, such as “When you feel safe you take risks; When you take risks you grow” and “To be ready for the world, children must be self-aware, compassionate, and empowered” express the context and the purpose of a Wellington education and the Wellington experience. Members of every constituency have commented on how these messages resonate with them and how true they are of this school.

These materials are authentic. They honor this school, capture its many intangibles in words and images, offer a common vocabulary, give proof through examples, and open opportunities for discussion and further expression. The themes of “We are Wellington” and “I am Wellington” well represent and express the intensely personal and individualized nature of The Wellington School experience.