The student who won a competition to design a safer drinking
campaign came up with his idea at a notorious Dunedin party
University of Otago students took the top three places in the
New Zealand section of an Australasian competition ''to get
students to drink more safely''. It was also supported by the
Otago University Students' Association.
Postgraduate marketing student Alex Carruthers (22) picked up
$5000 in prize money for winning the competition with his
pitch ''The Straw'', based on the idea that there is a point
at which having an extra drink takes the drinker into the
Winning the New Zealand leg of the competition, run by
alcohol company Pernod Ricard New Zealand and advertising
agency Ogilvy and Mather, also meant he made it into the
The overall winner will have their campaign brought to life
at their university early next year, and then across other
participating universities later in the year.
Mr Carruthers said he came up with the idea at the ''The
Lighthouse'' flat while bouncing around ideas with the
''notorious Lighthouse Lads''.
One compared it with the expression ''the straw that broke
the camel's back'', which led to the idea of ''The Straw'',
''The main idea is to isolate that single point in time when
you choose whether or not to have that one drink too many,
what we are calling 'The Straw'.''
The second prize of $1500 went to law and commerce student
Josie McGuinness for the ''Cringe Campaign'', with
microbiology student Anuraag Dhani picking up third and $1000
for ''Simple Maths''.