Northwestern University and Evanston's Only Daily News Source Since 1881

The Daily Northwestern

Northwestern University and Evanston's Only Daily News Source Since 1881

The Daily Northwestern

Northwestern University and Evanston's Only Daily News Source Since 1881

The Daily Northwestern

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Shankar hopes to use business contacts to help students

Adi Shankar hasn’t yet been elected to the Associated Student Government executive board, but he’s no stranger to a schedule that leaves little time for sleep, homework and watching the NCAA basketball tournament for hours at a time.

The Student Services Vice Presidential candidate has been the president of AdShop, a university advertising company for student groups, since 2005 and is also CEO of The 47 Company, an advertising company he started over a year ago. The advertising company boasts clients such as Steve Madden, as well as ASG.

“I’m a doer,” Shankar said. “If I see something that can be done more efficiently, I want to get it done.”

The communication studies and legal studies junior doesn’t have a hometown. Born in India, Shankar lived in Hong Kong during its transition from British to Chinese rule. He attended high school in Rhode Island and has also lived in Los Angeles and London. During school breaks, Shankar visits family and friends all over the world, including his parents, who now live in Singapore.

Although Shankar describes advertising as a hobby rather than a future career, he said starting The 47 Company and leading AdShop has given him first-hand experience at putting ideas into action, something he said the Student Services Committee of ASG is lacking.

“They pass bills but don’t have the ability to implement them, which struck me as strange,” Shankar said.

Shankar wants to use corporate connections he developed through The 47 Company to help the Student Services Committee implement programs for students.

He has put together a group called LaunchPad, a group of undergraduates involved in the Institute for Business Education backed by venture capital that work to make Student Services Committee ideas, such as a South Campus cafe, into business plans.

“This will give us the opportunity to explore funds outside of university funds,” Shankar said. “The university will approve student service plans but they won’t necessarily need to worry about funding things this way – it will allow bigger and better projects to be implemented.”

Shankar’s platform also includes using his connections with businesses like and Cingular Wireless to improve NU Webmail and the Student Escort Service.

Although Shankar has never held an ASG position, he doesn’t consider himself a “total ASG outsider.” He said he has attended several senate meetings and Student Service Committee meetings this year.

Weinberg junior Kunal Kadakia, a member of ASG’s Student Activities Finance Board and Shankar’s housemate, describes Shankar as a dedicated, passionate person skilled at networking.

“A lot of people that talk about ideas and have these great visions, but Adi implements them and gets those things done,” he said. “He will put in the work and take as long as it takes – he’s an extremely energetic person.”

Kadakia said that of his seven housemates, Shankar has been the “first person to get up in the morning and the last one to go to bed,” since even before he began campaigning for SSVP.

“His primary concern is getting stuff done,” Kadakia said.

Reach Amanda Palleschi at [email protected].

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Shankar hopes to use business contacts to help students