Brendan Willenberg: AWARD School. Advertising’s Hippocratic Oath.

| | No Comments
Brendan Willenberg: AWARD School. Advertising’s Hippocratic Oath.

By Brendan Willenberg, ECD, Archibald Williams and former AWARD School winner, Tutor and School Head


I remember after submitting my AWARD School book in 2006 a conversation I had with my tutor Paul Nagy. I had been that annoying student who always came in with too many (bad) ideas and stalked Paul trying to steal about 10 minutes of his time before the deadline. Each time he kindly obliged and when the fog of war had subsided, I said “Thank you so much for your time. I don’t think I can ever repay you”.

His response stuck with me 17 years later.

“No need to repay me, just do the same for others when you’re ready”.

For centuries, doctors took some version of the Hippocratic Oath and that exchange constantly reminds me of the first line.

“I will respect the hard-won scientific gains of those physicians in whose steps I walk, and gladly share such knowledge as is mine with those who are to follow”

For 40 years, we have been following this practice too.

The AWARD School alumni list is a who’s who of the industry both in this country and abroad. But, for every David Droga there are scores of students who become tutors and tutors who become school heads. Similarly, people like the AWARD Council, Simone Goldstein at the Ad Council and Esther (of Esther fame) are continuing to cement Award School as the pre-eminent creative school in the country. They have been responsible for not only evolving the course but endeavouring to broaden its church and as a result, increase the diversity of the industry. Each year, the work coming from the students is better for their endeavours.

So, congratulations to the recent tranche of graduates. Having been intimately involved in the school for a decade as both a tutor and School Head, your achievements have already placed you in good stead for a long and exciting career. And hopefully when you are ready, you can gladly share your knowledge with those who are to follow.

Tuesday Night was a stunning reminder of the amazing spirit that lives within the Australian advertising community. The edifying belief in creativity and helping those who are to follow.