Earlier this fall, the mentees of The List's pilot mentorship program Generation Next gathered virtually to present their final projects: marketing campaigns that would spread the message of the value of using mentorship to improve the diverse talent crisis in the industry using the most creative and innovative tools and tech available.
The projects were the culmination of the inaugural year of Generation Next, almost a year to the day after The List—the group of advertising, marketing and media leaders assembled by Ad Age in partnership with Facebook—announced plans to create a mentorship program aimed at mid-career professionals of diverse and underrepresented backgrounds with three to five years of experience. Six months after launching Generation Next with the help of Management Leadership for Tomorrow (MLT) and the Asian American Advertising Federation (3AF), which helped recruit mentee candidates, four groups of mentees pitched their campaigns to a panel of List judges.
On Oct. 18, Natalie Zfat, Ad Age Studio 30 contributing editor, and Brandi Pitts, Facebook's global digital marketing director, moderated a panel at The Female Quotient’s Virtual Equality Lounge during Advertising Week New York, “Leveling Up: Why Diverse Mentorship Programs Can Bridge the Gap to True Equity & Inclusion,” featuring representatives from each team. The mentees shared an overview of each of their campaigns, as well as their insights from their time in the Generation Next mentorship program.