Press Release | Oct 04, 2022

Michael Patrick Partners’ March Madness Ad for Education Industry Wins National Creative Award

Studio wins silver for Gonzaga University marketing campaign

SAN FRANCISCO, CA—Michael Patrick Partners announced today that the 60-second television ad it created for Gonzaga University was honored with silver in this year’s University & College Designers Association (UCDA) Award Show. Only 27 accolades were presented from a total of 800 worldwide entries.

Referred to as the “Courage” video, the production aired on CBS, ESPN, TNT, and truTV during the 2022 March NCAA Division 1 men’s basketball tournament to promote the Gonzaga University brand.

Directed by Robert Maidens, Michael Patrick Partners’ president and co-creative director, the assignment was also supported by a renowned digital production ensemble.

An idea was born from the notion that it takes courage to raise a hand. In the ad, hands became symbols of courage. Courage to stand out, to go first, and to reach for the stars.

Maidens states: “A lot of the credit goes to Gonzaga University’s marketing leadership. The work my staff develops is only as good as the client will allow. In this case, we explored novel approaches to education marketing and the client recognized that the concept successfully portrayed the essence of a Gonzaga University outcome.

“Too many education videos fall short—they rely heavily on smiling students. Diplomas. And campus flyovers. Our creative direction cut to the heart of the Gonzaga brand—it’s a stop-and-think moment. A presentation that delivers a differentiated market presence.”

Through the years, Michael Patrick Partners has compiled a historical education client list that features Santa Clara University, Stanford University, UC Davis, the University of Northern Iowa, the University of Portland, and others. In most cases, assignments focus on helping universities and colleges improve the quality and quantity of admission applicant pools, refining institutional brand strategies into cogent stories, growing endowments, and designing comprehensive brand identity programs.

Last year, UCDA presented the studio with multiple awards for work it completed for another Pacific Northwest education client, Linfield University. Included within the acknowledgements was an honor for a video Maidens, and studio vice president and co-creative director Keith Pacoma, developed for Linfield’s “Spark Wonder” fundraising campaign. To date, Michael Patrick Partners has been recognized by UCDA each year the studio has entered the show.

Best known for developing the E*TRADE identity, Michael Patrick Partners expanded its video capabilities to ensure its clients project a highly visual dimension to their marketing campaigns. Most recently, the design studio completed productions for the beverage market (Oregon-based Suzie’s Brewery Company hard seltzer product launch) and the financial services market (Silicon Valley’s Technology Credit Union marketing campaign).

Michael Patrick Partners is a San Francisco design studio best known for developing the E*TRADE identity. Along with an expertise in brand identity and integrated design systems, it also provides a focus on brand management, digital and packaging to differentiate a market presence at any stage of an organization’s life cycle. Throughout four decades, the studio has created, maintained and evolved brands—a body of work that has spanned banking to beer, education to energy, hard seltzer to healthcare, and technology to transportation. Review engaging outcomes that have received 500+ awards from the most coveted competitions. Visit to learn more.

About UCDA

The University & College Designers Association (UCDA) inspires designers working in academia in North America and around the world by delivering relevant programming and benefits in a personal and thoughtful way. The organization provides for the professional and personal growth of its members, and advocates for designers’ and educators’ roles within their institution. UCDA works to elevate the importance of design overall.

Media Contact

Will Maidens, Michael Patrick Partners, 727.655.8833,