AJC wants you to share video of your teen’s college acceptance moment!

Click the photo to see the video of the Target ad where kids find out they are accepted to college.

Have you seen this Target ad where kids find out on camera that they were accepted to college? It totally makes me cry every time I see it. (Click the screenshot or this link to watch the ad. I wasn’t able to embed the video with the new iframe embed code.) Well the AJC wants you to share your special college acceptance moments as they happen this spring. See how to share your videos of your teen’s joy (and your joy) below:

Want to share that special moment when your child learns that he or she has gotten into the college of their choice? The AJC would love hear from you if you’ve captured the moment when your son or daughter receives a letter of acceptance. Please send a video to media@ajc.com with the subject line “I GOT IN!”  We’ll post the videos on ajc.com.

As a side note, apparently I am not the only one crying when they see this Target ad. A marketing website explains emotional branding:

From Contently.com:

Of course I’m not crying at the Target commercial of kids getting into college! That would be… oh, shut up,” said @DahliaAF. Austin L. Church tweeted, “My wife and I both just teared up watching a Target commercial. Sheesh. As a marketer I should KNOW better.”

Target’s videos are touching to people and fostering an emotional tie to the brand. Steve McKee wrote in Businessweek that emotional branding is what makes a business stand out.

“Brands that face a high degree of competitive parity whose ad budgets depend on what competitors spend in categories such as soft drinks, beer, and automobiles understand the entry to effective differentiation is through the personality door,” he says. ”They simply don’t have unique rational claims to make, so they have to win people’s hearts instead of their minds. But all brands, and all products no matter the industry can leverage the power of personality to strengthen their appeal.”

The Target ad seeks to connect emotionally with people, aiming to create a bond with the brand.

Tell us about your child’s college acceptance moment? Did you video tape it? Do you wish you had? Who was more overjoyed: you or them? Be sure to share you videos this spring with us!

25 comments Add your comment

Hidden Agenda

March 19th, 2014
9:17 pm

Show a video of your face when you see what the annual tuition costs are going to be. Way funnier I’m sure.


March 19th, 2014
9:47 pm

Helicopter Mom’s need to take a chill pill. Your kid got in, you didn’t. Let them share the news. It’s not a competition between your kid and your friend’s kid. Wish them all the best and step-off.


March 19th, 2014
10:48 pm

How is it Helicopter parenting if you are excited at a huge milestone for many teens. Many of them have worked hard to get there and in most cases were supported by one or both parents on the journey. This is their moment yes,but it is also an accomplishment for the parent..the kid didn’t raise his or herself. It is a shared joy and people tend to commemorate(sp) those moments in photo and video.
Now posting them is another matter, but as long as everyone involved is ok with it then what does it matter to the rest of us. Watch, Don’t Watch now that IS up to you.


March 19th, 2014
11:24 pm

Ugh. This isn’t commemorating a moment, it’s dramatizing it. But sadly, it’s become the norm for “news” outlets to create these emotional moments rather than observe and share them. I hate these kinds of things, especially the super-staged reunions of kids and their military parents where they surprise the kid by having mom or dad walk out at a pep rally or something with news crews taping while the kid who hasn’t seen them in months or years sobs. It just feels so manufactured and intrusive to me. More organic moments caught on video or as still shots are touching (like the iconic kissing couple in NYC post WWII), but ones where the stage is carefully set to play it up are just icky to me.


March 20th, 2014
6:13 am

To me, this is no different than people who film their proposals/engagements. Isn’t anything private anymore?


March 20th, 2014
6:25 am

Everyone wants their 15 minutes of fame!


March 20th, 2014
6:49 am

I cry at Publix commercials every holiday season. I can appreciate the excitement of getting into college if it was on a academic scholarship. Some of these folks may be the first one in their family to get into college, so it could be a huge deal for them. If you don’t want to watch, then don’t. Easy enough.

That Target ad...

March 20th, 2014
6:53 am

…. is not reality – give it a rest, already…great blog Monday this week; yesterday was OK; today, not even worthy of a yawn – but, thanks for trying.

It’s tough day in and day out to write a quality blog – just ask Bookman – he only uses one topic to writes about, and most days he is WWWAAAY off base…but he keeps trying, bless his heart!

That Target ad...

March 20th, 2014
6:56 am

…plus, you already know whether you got in by the size of the “acceptance” envelope – thick, you’re in; single sheet of paper, you are not (at least that is how UGA does it)…and most kids know they are going to college, just not sure where in most instances…

Mother of 2

March 20th, 2014
6:58 am

My son would be horrified if I posted a video like this – believe it or not, some teens are actually private. He and I opened 2 acceptance emails together. One was a safety school, so it was no surprise with very little drama. The second was more stressful because it was a more selective school. He was very tense and almost afraid to open the email. Thankfully, “congratulations” was in the subject line. He is waiting on one more school, the most selective school he applied to. He feels confident, but will be nervous. We are all anxiously counting down the days until 4/1. I won’t video tape the experience, but will let our family know the results. We’ll have a private celebration with a special dinner regardless of what transpires on 4/1.

This is a very fun time for high school seniors. But it is also stressful and sometimes defeating. I’ve noticed that my son’s classmates are tempering their zeal because they are very aware of their friends’ disappointments. Every family with high school seniors seems to have the same mantra – “You will do well and feel like you belong at the school you attend.”


March 20th, 2014
7:15 am

OF COURSE Target is trying to get you emotional and remind you that they put 1Billion in schools. The AJC reported this week that Target’s biggest buyers (25-39) are not buying from Target like they did. Why? Well in December AJC reported that something like 40 Million credit card holders were fraud victims!!!

Again, this week AJC reported that Target was warned of a potential problem well before it got to 40 Million and failed to act on it.

Assuming that the AJC does fact check…..heck yeah Target needs some good will branding to remind some why to go there. (Sidenote: I didn’t stop shopping Target, just not as often).

As to this video, I don’t get why you are crying…I didn’t find it teary at all. I was excited and pumped up by the kids reactions. They worked hard and they got into the schools they wanted. Good for them and I hope they make the most of their further education to become good leaders…we need good leaders!


March 20th, 2014
7:42 am

I like the commercial. It hits close to home right now.

My son aimed very high with his college apps and also a couple back up schools.

It has been a nerve wracking wait (for all of us) and he has been very worried that he aimed too high (he is fully aware of the low acceptance rates at his top choices). He has been concerned/scared that he wouldn’t be accepted anywhere.

I had to close my eyes and take a deep breath before the first “answer link” was clicked. At one point I kind of wished I had been ready with a camera to capture the look on his face when he received his first acceptance, but that feeling has passed.

Had I been worried about capturing the moment digitally, I’d have missed experiencing it with him. The image of pride on his face is forever seared in my mind.

We are still waiting on 3 others… fingers crossed.

Mom of 3

March 20th, 2014
7:58 am

Much ado about nothing. Having just observed this process last year with my high school senior, I can tell you that many parents are more stressed than their kids. They just can’t wait to brag about where their child will be going to college. One mother I know actually posted about his acceptance on HIS Facebook page because he wouldn’t do it himself. Say what?! And all he did was get into Georgia. Good grief!
My 4.3 GPA(small private school with no grade inflation) student is at KSU this year because it was the fiscally smart thing to do. She does not define herself by what college she goes to. She continues to maintain a 4.0 and will either stay at KSU or go elsewhere as her path becomes more defined. But the best part is she lives her life without the need to post anything about it on Facebook or Twitter. She’s never had Facebook and only now has Twitter because that is the communication method of choice by one of her professors.
Stop taking selfies, posting videos, and tweeting your deep thoughts and get out and LIVE life! Your life really does have substance and meaning even if no one else knows about!

Mom of 3

March 20th, 2014
8:00 am

Knows about it! :)


March 20th, 2014
9:29 am

There was a video that went around on FB last year about this girl getting into Spelman and I know a lot of my friends and I got a little teary-eyed at her reaction. Didn’t know the girl but know how we felt when we got accepted, know the hopes we had back then, know the experiences we had and wish for all the students that come through…it was great. We talked for DAYS about Spelman, went down memory lane and laughed at and with each other.

All this to say…it is fun to see them, especially when they get accepted to your school. I hope we get more posted from girls accepted to Spelman this year. *humming* “Spelman thy name we praise. Standards and honor raise….” LOL

FYI – not defining myself by which school I attended. :-) I have degrees from 2 other universities too but I love Spelman the most…best experience/memories.


March 20th, 2014
9:42 am

That’s not a new commercial is it? I swear I’ve seen it already… maybe it was a knockoff from a Youtube video. It made me smile but certainly not cry (but I’m not a crier anyway!)

Our son knew he had to go to an in-state college (our stipulation if he wanted help with college since it’s fiscally responsible) and while he had decent grades in HS, he was not going to go to a highly competitive college (UGA or Tech). For the remaining state schools in Georgia, you pretty much know if you meet their requirements, you’re going to be accepted. There’s really no pressure. Unless your student is really driven and focused on a specific career field, a smaller state school the first couple of years is the best way to go. Knock out some core classes where class sizes are reasonable, figure out what you really want to do and then decide if you want to stay where you are or transfer.


March 20th, 2014
9:46 am

By the way, does anyone know what qualifies a student as an in-state student if their parents move out of state while they’re in college? Do the parents have to continue to claim residency (and therefore pay state taxes)? Is it just a matter of owning property?

One of our son’s friends who is graduating HS this year just found out his dad is taking a job out of state. I’m curious how that will affect his in-state status for his sophomore year (your FASFA is based on last year’s income/taxes so I’m sure he’ll have no issues this fall).


March 20th, 2014
9:55 am

How much is AJC me paying for this free programming? No one in my house works for free.


March 20th, 2014
10:18 am

Are there videos of the college/university’s reaction to students’ “Thanks, but no thanks” rejection of their school as a backup, or second choice? Those would be funny!


March 20th, 2014
10:40 am

When they aren’t compromising our credit card information, I like Target. I like that they do invest in their communities whereas it doesn’t seem as if Walmart does the same. I can’t imagine ever having a donation box for employees at Target like they did in Walmart at Christmas. Blows my mind that the richest employer would have a food/toy drive in its own store, for its own employees. I think that’s shameful.

Back to the video – I kind of like it but agree with HB that we are being overrun with these sappy ads and videos. The surprise armed servicemen/women videos are so common now, as are the pet/vet reunions. I can tell you that my dog greets me the same way when I’ve been gone for 20 minutes. But the worst are those taped proposals. I told my husband 20 years ago that if he ever tried doing this publicly, like at a sporting event, I would say NO. I can’t stand that everyone wants to be on TV.

So, I am a bit torn: I like that these kids are getting to go to college when they otherwise might not be able to go, but the whole parents gloating “look at me and gifted spawn” has become unbearable.

Tea Party Patriot

March 20th, 2014
12:05 pm

Colleges is for sissy liberals who want ME to foot the bill! No different than Obozocare. If you want to be rich, become a plumber or electrician. Easily make 6 if not 7 figures before the age of 25.

Real Life

March 20th, 2014
12:39 pm

I am so glad that I grew up before everything had to be shared and I am glad that no one in my extended family has adopted the belief family moments are meant to be shared with everyone.
My eldest niece refuses to put the school honor bumper stickers on her car. She shares her daughter’s achievements with the family but does not think the rest of the world needs to know about it as well.
I wish more people would follow that path as well. Some things are just not of interest to people outside your family. Learn that and teach your children to know the difference. The children will grow up with much healthier self-esteem as they will already know when to stop sharing details of their personal lives and not risk being told no one is interested.


March 20th, 2014
8:34 pm

Monday’s blog was excellent – very well thought out, organized, well written. After that Theresa reverts back to old bad habits – cut and paste, write a few sentences followed by – “show me your videos and what do you think?”. The effort she puts into this blog is a “C” grade by teaching standards, its certainly not “A” quality work and I’m sure objectively she would agree. Her priorities are elsewhere, they are not on this blog. Don’t know about her boss and his pressure but I’m sure its minimal based on her salary and Michael is now pulling in a bit below $200k with benis.

Oh Theresa, when bloging about relo I would be very, very carefull honey. With Michael managing so many people I am sure there are several who have Googled his name only to find you writing about the comps provided during the move. You are screwing your husband up and you don’t know it yet until it bites your family. You have never been in a household where your husband is out of work; you have been sheltered for a very long time from the harsh reality of the economy by Michael’s success. I would temper your words very carefully.

BTW – Theresa has gotten snippy this week with people on this blog (dumb, because they pay her bills by the clicks the website receives) and she will ban anyone at the drop of a hat rather than tollerate any chance of being challenged on her efforts or her abilities.

Cut, paste, write a few sentences…. followed by “What do you think?”.

UGA journalism degree in action with a higher GPA than Michael. Its just poor quality, baby. Tighten up.


March 22nd, 2014
12:11 am

@That Target ad . . . Do they even send college acceptances by mail now? It seemed like even five years ago, the usual method of acceptance was by email. I remember five years ago — almost to the day — my daughter sitting at the computer for three hours, constantly hitting “refresh” on her most-hoped-for college site. She had to leave at 4:30 pm to go on a church retreat, but left it open and asked me to keep checking (no smart phone at that time for her.) So, at 4:45, I reached over and hit the button. “Do you want to know your decision?” came up on the screen. Augh!!!!! Yes . . . . thankfully, a screen full of confetti and “Congratulations!!” popped up. I called her (in retrospect, a mistake) and when she answered, I said, “You’re going to ____!!!” She squealed and started crying, but she was still driving — she had to pull over and stop crying! (Yep, bad timing. Me bad.) And yes, I was crying right along with her – in relief. She had a specific school she really wanted to go to because of a specific course of study, and it’s pretty selective. She had a fall-back, but it was a distant second. It IS exciting, when your child is successful in reaching a goal. Why not celebrate?

@Michael: You know, I poke around on some of the other blogs on AJC, and other blogs that I enjoy on different topics. I can’t think of ANY other blog where the writer gets castigated frequently because the blogs aren’t meeting some imaginary level of “quality.” It’s a blog. It’s not investigative journalism. it’s casually chatting over a cup of coffee at the kitchen table or with a friend at Starbucks. “Hey, did you see that article on . . .?” That horse you’re sitting on is pretty darn high, buddy.


March 23rd, 2014
9:53 am

Out of town and out of the loop….

For those of you who whine about the content of TWGs blogs…why bother? I see all sorts of tabloids at the checkout, that do not interest me. YET they are still there, as someone is buying them. I am not compariing TWG to a tabloid but REALLY …if you do not like her blog just don’t read it.

I do remember the hefty packet for my son’s acceptance and then my daughter got an email. Yes, they were excited. No, I do not have a video nor do I want one. I also remember when our son got into Pharmacy school, as he was a late acceptance and getting nervous. He called and was so excited. The end of the story is that he was part of the 75% of the class that actually finished. While the others did have a much better GPA coming in, they did not have the endurance to make it to the finish line ( or chose not to) and walk across the stage. That day, was a tear jerker for me.

As parents, we are proud of our children’s accomplishments but sometimes not everyone else thinks what your children are doing is that spectacular. That is fine to.