Summer Reality TV Show Pilot Internship '04 Launched Today

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UniKeepÂ?s Student Team Chosen for Internship '04 Program with a real business Â?make or breakÂ? story line. 12 interns will be taken to New York to build awareness of a unique product save a company.

Businessman Ross Youngs, CEO and managing member of UniKeep LLC, introduced the team of 12 interns that he believes will have a crucial impact on his company this summer, and hopefully, on a large viewing audience. With major networks and local print media in attendance, the introductionon at the Fisher College of Business on the campus of The Ohio State University brought together for the first time a group of summer interns that will work directly with him throughout the summer. The focal point of their assignment will be a four week stint in New York City to canvas the financial and creative industries. Without the budget for traditional advertising, Youngs is betting that pounding the pavement will pay off big time for this ambitious group. And all the while, the team will document the process and their adventures through video and web broadcasts that will be filmed as a television pilot for a more-than-real reality television show.

Youngs is counting on the group to achieve awareness for his fledgling product, the UniKeep View Case Binder™, with the goal of driving demand. Since its introduction in 2001, the unique, 100% polypropylene, fully enclosed three ring binder has had national distribution, but very little sell-through. The product has attracted a large following of devoted users, but not nearly enough to demand the product’s appearance on the shelves of key national retailers. And national acceptance is imperative for this young brand.

To boost awareness and viewing, the interns will publish their experiences, journals, and strategies on their website, The interns will manage the site and handle the video and creative side, as well. The program has a variety of sponsorship opportunities, including equipment and advertising. To promote the opportunities, Internship ’04 is offering FREE ADVERTISING through June 30, 2004, to brands that target the 18-35 age group that Internship ’04 will attract (

“This promises to be an exciting—and hopefully rewarding—summer for both the interns and UniKeep,” commented Youngs in discussing the concept. “Unlike other summer intern programs, where students are given a desk and little to do, these students will be given a real-life laboratory with the challenge of building product awareness and sales for one of our unique existing products. As in the real world, they will be rewarded periodically for exceptional work, while having to face the consequences for poor performance. There is a lot at stake for both them and UniKeep.”

So much is at stake, in fact, that Youngs believes American television viewers will find the interns’ experience riveting drama. He is having respected film and video maker Allen Farst, director/ executive producer of Niche Productions in Dayton, turn out a pilot documenting the 12-week summer program. Included in Farst’s previous work are music videos for singers such as Keith Urban, the Beu Sisters, Sevendust, Seether, and Wynonna Judd. He recently produced a documentary with Panasonic titled “The 100 Years of Flight: 17 Days of Glory”, commemorating the city of Dayton’s celebration of the Wright Brothers’ historic work in the field of aviation.

The team of interns will be managed directly by Youngs and will be coached by a growing panel of advisors from across business and academia. Together, the twenty-three advisors already on board represent companies with over $4 billion in annual sales and a wealth of industry and business experience.

The interns themselves have a broad range of experience and expertise. Most are from the prestigious Fisher College of Business at The Ohio State University. Other highly respected programs are represented as well, from schools such as Ohio University and Columbus College of Art and Design.

Youngs ( ( over the day-to-day operations of UniKeep ( in September of 2003 when growth of the company he founded failed to meet expectations. In 1998, the Small Business Association named him National Business Person of the Year. He has directed a company to the Inc. 500 listing five years in a row. He holds multiple patents worldwide and is the principal inventor of the UniKeep product line.

Additional information regarding Internship `04 may be found at For additional information about UniKeep, call toll free (800) 829-8117 or visit its web site at

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Ross Youngs