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Special Project

Special Project
From the 8th Annual Shorty Impact Awards

The Loyola Project "63 for 63 Screening Series" presented by Northwestern Mutual

Entered in Educate


After a sold out red carpet premiere of the documentary The Loyola Project in the spring of 2022, Northwestern Mutual partnered with its filmmakers O'Malley Creadon Productions to create a first-of-its-kind nationwide college tour called the "63 for 63 Screening Series". The goal was simple - screen the film and provide a safe space for students and community memebers to have important conversations around race, equality, and social justice at 63 different colleges around the country in honor of the 1963 Loyola Ramblers.

Given how universities interact, an additional objective quickly developed. In an industry where athletics and campus life normally do not communicate or work together, how can we bring them together and foster impactful conversations that resonate with all students.

Strategy and Execution

The Loyola Project is a documentary produced and directed by Patrick Creadon of O'Malley Creadon Productions. It tells the story of the 1963 Loyola Ramblers men's basketball team, who changed the game of college basketball by breaking the unwritten rule at the time and starting four black players, while also speeding up the game and inventing the 'run and gun' style of fast play that is now the norm in modern basketball. The film is narrated by former Loyola Ramblers Final Four team member, captain, and current pro basketball player Lucas Williamson, who uses the 1963 team's story to shine a light on if things really have changed in today's society when it comes to race relations.

Building off of the film's strong story and cinematography, Northwestern Mutual's DEI team and O'Malley Creadon Productions worked together to create a programming experience that would use entertainment through film to cultivate valuable and insightful conversations. To do this, a screening package was created that included rights to screen the film, physical and digital copies of the film, an educational study guide supplement written by Dr. Nona Storr of George Mason University, marketing materials, and day-of event promotional materials. These were offered to schools completely free - a first, as until now schools have had to pay to license rights to show films.

In addition, a group of speakers from the film, the team, and subject matter experts was formed for schools to leverage and bring to their campus for talk back conversations at their screening event.

Once all materials were created, a dedicated touring team began outreach to schools while simultaneously launching a social media campaign. In April, The Loyola Project had linear TV promotion with a one hour special of the film that premiered on CBS during primetime Final Four weekend and during commercial breaks, custom-created "63 for 63 Screening Series" ads ran to bring attention to the tour. By creating a powerful PSA to promote the series, Northwestern Mutual and tour organizers encouraged students and faculty to "See the film. Start the conversation." This became the tagline and ultimately the mantra going forward for the entire tour.


With a goal of screening on 63 college campuses, the tour surpasssed expectations by filling up all spots within four weeks - resulting in expansion. The overwhelming feedback from campus leaders was that the film and the conversations that followed were a dynamic combination that led to meaningful insight and engagement.

The results?


Video for The Loyola Project "63 for 63 Screening Series" presented by Northwestern Mutual

Entrant Company / Organization Name

Northwestern Mutual


Entry Credits