Design students broaden Subway’s menu


Ericka Shin

The “Mortadella Sub” is cut and neatly presented in front of the judges. The sub included classic ingredients such as lettuce, tomatoes, mortadella cold cuts and avocados.

Design classes aren’t always about creating web pages or images. With an ambitious teacher like John Over, new ideas and assignments are introduced into the class, including the recent Subway sandwich project. Students were given the task to create an original never-before-seen type of sandwich and design a menu card and a promotional standee to advertise the sandwich.

To help inspire his students, Over took them on a field trip to the Subway restaurant located on Foothill Boulevard where they collaborated with the employees there and reviewed the menus and ingredients. When the students came back to class, they immediately split into five groups and began discussing their ideas with each other. “What I want the kids to do is to create something that has never been thought of and to essentially bring people in if Subway were to sell their sandwich,” Over said.

Creating the sandwich took two weeks before Over called in two dedicated Subway employees, Armineh Gharibian and Vanessa Pallaves, along with Assistant Principal Lena Kortoshian and a Clark student to judge each groups’ sandwiches and advertisements. Groups were scored based on their level of professionalism in their presentation, the taste of their sandwich, the appearance of their advertisement, and the campaign’s potential for success.

Juniors Tony Petrossian and Hassan Atif were the first group to present their new sandwich, “The Black Angus.” The colorful sub consisted of avocados, grilled onions and peppers on steak and topped with crushed nacho cheese Doritos to give it an extra kick. “We added so many ingredients that are packed with protein because the larger demographic within California are healthy, active people,” Petrossian said. “And we wanted to appeal to them.” To prove their point further, they included the number of calories on their online advertisement for health conscious customers.

The panel of judges, Armineh Gharibian, Vanessa Pallaves and Lena Kortoshian, mark their final thoughts of the sandwiches. The judges took their time discussing the strengths and weaknesses of each sub.
Ericka Shin
The panel of judges, Armineh Gharibian, Vanessa Pallaves and Lena Kortoshian, mark their final thoughts of the sandwiches. The judges took their time discussing the strengths and weaknesses of each sub.

The next group of students to present decided to take a simpler approach to their creation. Presented neatly in front of the judges, the sandwich included ham, lettuce, red banana peppers, feta cheese, arugula and cucumbers inside plain Italian bread. Junior Nicole Azzo and sophomores Melanie Kasparyan and Ninette Simonian also had a promotional standee of rap artist Kanye West holding their sandwich and reenacting his interruption of Taylor Swift at the MTV Music Awards in 2009. His memorable phrase was changed to “Imma let you finish, but you feta believe it’s good.” The judges agreed that their advertisement was the most entertaining out of the rest and the group received higher points for it.

The judges tasted each sandwich enthusiastically, but once the third group, seniors Conner Clark and Ericka Shin and junior Robert Herrin, placed their “Honeybaked Hoagie” before the panel, the judges dug in with more vigor. “We built our advertisement off a Cuban design and we turned our sandwich into one that you could have in any season,” Herrin said during his presentation. The sandwich itself had a sweetness within it that sparked taste buds and complimented the thick slices of ham and other basic ingredients inside. Points were awarded to the group for their exceptional presentation skills and advertisement design.

One of the guest judges and Subway employees, Armineh Gharibian, expressed her appreciation of the fourth group’s sandwich since it appealed to the large Armenian community within Glendale. Named after the cold cut most ordered by Armenians, the “Mortadella Sub” gave the judges a taste of home and familiarity with each bite. The sub consisted of ingredients juniors Lori Berberian and Christine Sarkhoshyan thought Armenians would usually order: lettuce, tomatoes, cilantro, feta cheese, mortadella slices and olives.

Unfortunately, junior Rita Tanchian and sophomore Ramtin Karimaei, the fifth and last group, didn’t have a sandwich as well prepared as the others. The team had initially planned to create a “Thanksgiving Sub” that would have all of the holiday essentials within it. However their other teammate was absent on the day of the presentations and couldn’t bring all the ingredients that were needed to place in the sandwich. “We had loved our idea,” Karimaei said. “It had given us an opportunity to explore different aspects of sandwich making. We basically had the mind of a cook for once.”

Though their sandwich lacked in content, their concept made up for it. The judges especially loved the idea of Thanksgiving in a bun because Subway didn’t have anything on the menu for that particular holiday. As a result, judges scored high for the amount of potential within the idea of the sandwich.

When the presentations finished, the judges took longer than anticipated to fully discuss who the winning group would be and which sandwich was the best. Eventually, they all came to an agreement that the “Black Angus” sandwich ranked highest in the category of taste and appearance of the advertisement and therefore won the contest.  The winning group received gift cards to Subway as their prize. The “Mortadella Sub” came in close second but ultimately fell short in the taste range compared to the “Black Angus.”