Hello, new and returning members!
This year is going to be full of workshops, tours, traveling and networking. I encourage everyone to become engaged and seek out the opportunities PRSSA has to offer. I believe the more you put into PRSSA, the more PRSSA gives back to you.
I transferred to Illinois State University in my junior year and declared public relations as my major. My transition to ISU was more difficult than I anticipated, so I sought out a place where I felt I belonged.
At the beginning of the school year, I heard classmates and professors talk about PRSSA, so I decided to check it out. I sat way in the back and attempted to take in all the information, but honestly I was still confused about what PR even was.
As I continued my regular Chapter attendance, things started to come together. I began to understand the content presented in the classroom and was becoming familiar with my peers.
I finally became an active member once I toured two PR agencies in downtown Chicago with PRSSA. I now understood how this is a professional-development organization and how this experience would open new doors. It gives you real-world experience that builds on what you learn in the classroom.
Once I became an engaged member, I decided to apply to be our Chapter’s delegate to PRSSA’s National Assembly. I was selected to be flown out to Seattle, Wash., to represent our Chapter. I was with more than 200 other students from across the US who were also chosen by their local Chapters. I participated in professional-development workshops, attended leadership training sessions, and helped elect the PRSSA’s upcoming National Committee. I networked and met people from all around the world whom I still talk to today.
When the end of the school year rolled around, I felt motivated to apply for my current role as our Chapter’s president. I gained a holistic perspective of the organization when I attended the National Assembly and it fueled my fire for public relations and PRSSA.
I want to instill that fire in you and help you prepare you for your professional career. Please never hesitate to reach out to me or any of the Executive Board members. This is going to be a great year!
in marketing and public relations. Being involved in PRSSA allows me to gain a better understanding of the public relations industry. I also heard great things about the organization and the opportunities it has, and that really appealed to me.
What else are you involved in on campus?
I am involved in the service organization Circle K. The fellow members, along with myself, go out into the community and volunteer with other organizations and at various events. I am also a member of Women in Business. Learning different skills, networking with speakers and volunteering are a few of the things Women in Business offers.
What is something that others may be surprised to know about you?
Something others might be surprised to know about me is that I have a goal to visit all Walt Disney World theme parks around the world. I love to travel and I also love the magic that is connected to the WDW parks.
Where do you see yourself in five years?
I’m not quite sure where I see myself in five years. I hope to have a stable job as a member of a marketing team for a company. As long as I have had graduated and have a job, I’ll be happy!
Who/what inspires you most?
My grandfather inspires me the most. He was a member of many organizations throughout his lifetime and served on the executive board for most of them. Whenever he was given a task to complete, he always put his heart and soul into it and made sure it was fulfilled to its full potential. I aspire to live my life with such courage and optimism as he did.
Illinois State University PRSSA members headed up to Chicago on Friday, Feb. 3 for the first agency tour of the spring semester. Our members had the opportunity to visit Porter Novelli and Walker Sands Communications.
Our first stop on the agency tour was Porter Novelli. The Porter Novelli office welcomed us with open arms and a warm energy, along with some breakfast foods and coffee (which was much needed after the drive from Normal to Chicago). The office had a modern and chic vibe, while still providing an environment that incorporated the organization’s culture and boutique atmosphere.
Account Executive Meghan Schulze led the tour, along with several other staff of various positions. The presentation began with a general overview of Porter Novelli and the work the organization does as a boutique public relations agency to make an impact in consumer brands, health and wellness, food and nutrition, as well as technology.
The presentation continued with a discussion of the difference between agency and corporate public relations and developed into tips and tricks for landing an internship or job. A key point that Schulze highlighted about internships is that it’s okay to intern after graduating; many companies design their internship programs to help new grads become acclimated to the company atmosphere.
A unique element to the tour was presented by Senior Counselor Rich Jernstedt, who dedicated an “Interview 101” section to the presentation. Jernstedt has extensive experience in public relations, and had advice on how to prepare for an interview, how to act during the interview, and courtesy acts after the interview. He offered to look at our resumes for critiques, which was an awesome resource for our members!
Porter Novelli was an excellent host and provided us with valid insight on, not only their company, but the public relations field as a whole.
To continue with the tours for the day, our members walked a couple blocks south to Walker Sands. The tour was broken up into three parts. ISU and PRSSA alum Andrew Cross gave an overview of the agency and several larger projects that generated much success for the company. As a technology based agency, Walker Sands works with business-to-business (B2B) operations, providing them with a unique edge compared to other agencies.
After walking us through the basics of the agency, ISU alum Brittany Martin went over the organizational culture of Walker Sands and the fun environment that the agency exhibits both in and out of the office.
Next, members broke into small groups led by Walker Sands employees to pick their brains about life at the company. This informal setting gave members the opportunity to ask questions on a more personal level and really conveyed the unique, family-like organizational culture that the company is based upon. It was beneficial to have this small group experience so members could really get to know what Walker Sands has to offer.
Both tours gave members a great opportunity to see two different Chicago public relations agencies. Members were able to get a glimpse into the professional world while networking with the agency employees who participated in the tour. The tours offered by ISU PRSSA are a great opportunity to network and gain valuable insight to public relations as a professional field!
Written by Anna Cachares
Some reviews of Lady Gaga’s halftime show question if her performance had political undertones. “This Land is Your Land,” “God Bless America” and the recitation of part of the Pledge of Allegiance were alleged by the media to demonstrate political undertones. During the 2016 presidential election, Lady Gaga supported candidate Hillary Clinton and rallied against now president Donald Trump outside of Trump Towers.
Because of her previous outspoken political demonstrations, reporters questioned Lady Gaga’s approach at a press conference in Houston. During the press conference, she did not offer any information about politics being incorporated into her performance.
Instead, she stated, “I believe in a passion for inclusion. I believe in the spirit of equality and the spirit of this country. It’s one of love and compassion and kindness. So my performance will uphold those philosophies”.
Lady Gaga has been an advocate for inclusion and diversity throughout her career as a singer and performer. To reflect this within her music, Lady Gaga changed the lyrics in “Born This Way” to address the spectrum of the LGBTQ community. Right before Lady Gaga sang a rendition of “Million Reasons” , she addressed Texas, America, and then the world. She performed this song for over two minutes, which is the longest amount of time she spent singing a song during the show.
Was Lady Gaga simply promoting a song from her new album, or sending a message about immigration and inclusion in America? Lady Gaga’s communication of equality is evident in her songs, yet the debate of whether or not her halftime performance was political is up to public interpretation.
What aspects of PRSSA have benefitted you the most?
Definitely the agency tours! Being able to visit PR agencies and get a first hand look at the work culture and view a typical work day in the industry was extremely beneficial for me to figure out what field of PR I wanted to get into. Not to mention all the advice we acquire from employees.
In your previous Member Monday interview, you mentioned being a part of three clubs and working at the fitness center; how do you balance your school work and having a social life?
I’m really just trying to focus on my capstones, PRSSA, working and enjoying my last year. During my senior year, I’m trying to immerse myself as much as I can into PRSSA and my schoolwork to prepare myself the best I can for graduating in May and hopefully landing a job as soon as possible.
multiple accounts and always have a variety in terms of your projects is very attractive to me. I think that aspect calls for a lot of creativity, teamwork and something new every day, which I find very enticing.
What is a word of advice to the freshman and sophomore PR majors who are just starting off in the major?
Get involved as much as you can in PRSSA and other COM related Registered Student Organizations. It’s not only attractive to employers but building a network of future colleagues who have the same interests as you is awesome in terms of learning and personal gain, in general. ""
Since you are a senior, what is on your "bucket list" to do during senior year and before graduating?
I’m trying to have as much fun as I can. I also want to leave my mark on PRSSA and have a memorable and eventful year with lots of member involvement. On a different note, playing one on one with a sloth at the zoo is also on my bucket list. I love sloths!
Written by Maddie Rose
DISCLAIMER: No need to keep scrolling! These resolutions do not include going to the gym.
We are well into the new year, which means New Year's resolutions are back in full swing. I am not usually one to stick to resolutions, but hey, let’s keep the consistency going and try again! This new year should be dedicated to developing our professional selves and preparing for a career in public relations. If you want to be a better PR professional than you were last year, then read on!
1. Become more organized than ever before. We are PR majors- we can never be TOO organized.
I am sure you have heard this before, but writing down all of your tasks has to be one of the best ways to successfully complete all of your daily duties. If you have tried this before with no success, try this other helpful technique. Find a planner that fits with your personality. Maybe it has a cool cover or just enough lines to fit all of your responsibilities. If planners are not your go-to recorder, then try out a white board or strategically placed post-it note reminders around your room
2. Put yourself out there. Do something that will make you stand out.
As PR majors, we are all overachievers and have plenty of extracurricular activities on our resumes to make us great candidates for jobs in the field. So, what do you do if you have already gone that extra mile? Go even further. Create a video blog, help promote a new restaurant in town, do something that others haven’t! A great way to look for ideas is to ask yourself, “Who do I look up to for inspiration?” Then, take a look at what they may have done to get themselves above the rest.
3. Add the word “no” to your vocabulary.
Like I mentioned, PR students usually have way too much on their plate, which stems from our willingness to take on everything that comes our way. Although it may seem like the best option to take on that third or fourth activity, think about how it might affect your other activities you partake in. It is better to give your all in a few activities, than give half of your potential across four or five. If you are one to take on everything that comes your way, then check out this study tip:
4. Learn new de-stress techniques.
A year without stress is a year with no challenges or obstacles. Find techniques that will help you in those times. There are plenty of yoga exercises and breathing techniques that have circled the internet, but sometimes being calm is not what works for us. Try putting on some headphones and blasting music, or find a sweet treat to reward yourself. We all are programmed in different ways, so if you have not found your go-to stress reliever, start looking for things that you enjoy!
5. Anticipate your future career in PR.
As a senior, I know all too well how fast the time goes by in college. Before you know it, you are in your last semester and in the process of applying to jobs. Ask yourself, what do I want to do out of college? What exactly does a PR professional do? What is the work culture like in a PR agency? Familiarizing yourself with this information will help you prepare, or at least get your brain thinking about life after college.
Let 2017 be YOUR year. Which resolution will you take a shot at?
Written by Heather Tidwell
CALENDAR OF EVENTS:
Thursday, Feb. 2 – Internship Fair
Thursday, Feb 2 – Career Center Event: Internships
Friday, Feb. 3 – National Delegate Application due
Friday, Fen 3 – Career Center Event: Graduate School
Friday, Feb. 3 – Agency Tour
Tuesday, Feb. 7 – National Delegate Interviews before chapter
Friday, Feb. 17 – PRSSA Formal 2017
Tuesday, Feb. 21 – Dues are due!
Sunday, Feb. 26 – FLY Potluck Social
Friday, March 3 & Saturday, March 4 – Regional Conference
Thursday, March 30 – Sunday, April 2 – National Assembly
Wednesday, March 1 – Study Abroad app due
FleishmanHillard – March 1, 2017
Ketchum – Feb. 8, 2017
Institute of Political Journalism – Feb. 7, 2017
STUDY ABROAD: NETHERLANDS
The summer 2017 study abroad program will be taking place at Hanze University of Applied Sciences in Groningon from May 24 through June 16. Classes will be taught by professors in English and will explore multicultural competence and communication, the legal financial, and political aspects of the Eurozone, and European cultures from the business perspective. The 4-week program also includes excursions to selected destinations in The Netherlands, including Amsterdam. The study abroad program now counts for 6 academic credits. The application deadline is March 1. If you are interested in learning more, please contact Dr. Smudde: email@example.com
The summer 2017 study abroad program will also be taking place in Panama City, Panama from June 25 – July 23 and will focus on mass media and journalism. If you are interested in learning more please contact Jobn Baldwin firstname.lastname@example.org
CERTIFICATE IN PRINCIPLES OF PUBLIC RELATIONS: STAND OUT WHEN YOU START OUT
Graduating seniors must complete the computer-based exam 6 months before graduating or 6 months after graduating. The exam cost is $150 and the recommended online study course is $50. Online study materials can also be found on www.prcertificate.org. The Certificate in Principles of Public Relations is the stepping stone to Accreditation in Public Relations (APR). If you are interested please contact Dr. Smudde: email@example.com
FLEISHMANHILLARD: is accepting applications from graduating seniors for the 2016 Alfred Fleishman Diversity Fellowship program Nov. 1 – March 1. Priority review will be given to those who apply before Feb. 1. Current fellows have had the opportunity to work on client projects, media relations, events, and new business pitches. Program includes: 6-12 month fellowship, competitive pay, challenging work experience in one of our U.S. offices, and senior level mentorship. If you are interested, please contact: DiversityFellowship@fleishman.com
KETCHUM: Ketchum is accepting applications for the 2017 Summer Fellowship Program. The application deadline is Wednesday, Feb 8. They are looking for candidates with strong writing capabilities, intellectual curiosity, awareness with current trends, impeccable multitasking abilities, an interest in digital, savvy with social media, and a strong work ethic. Qualified applicants will participate in a “game” of a variety of challenges that will measure creative, digital, writing, and general PR skills. Top applicants will then move on to the interview stage.
INSTITUTE OF POLITICAL JOURNALISM:
The Institute of Political Journalism summer 2017 internship takes places in Washington, D.C. with housing paid for. Interns work approximately 30 hours a week. The application deadline is Feb. 7, 2017 and you are guaranteed an internship placement. Internship positions include print and broadcast media, new services, internet publications, public relations, Capitol Hill press offices and advocacy organizations. If you are interested, please Joe Starrs (Phone: 202-986-0384 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org) or visit dcinternships.org
AGENCY TOUR: WALKER SANDS & PORTER NOVELLI
We will be visiting Walker Sands and Porter Novelli on Friday, Feb. 3 in Chicago. Sign up at chapter by Tuesday, Jan 31. Class exemptions are available upon request. Please dress business casual and bring money for lunch and travel. If you signed up for the tour and can no longer make it, please contact Deja Whitt email@example.com
PRSSA FORMAL 2017:
PRSSA’s annual formal will be on Friday, Feb. 17. It will be a Las Vegas/Casino themed social. Snacks and beverages will be provided. Admission is $5 and all are welcome! Bring your friends! More details to come.
FLY PROGRAM POTLUCK SOCIAL:
Attention FLY members! There will be a potluck social on Sunday, Feb. 26. Please make or purchase a dish with your FLY partner and bring it to the social! More details to come. If you are interested in becoming a FLY member, please contact Chloe: firstname.lastname@example.org
If you are interested in becoming a member or continuing your PRSSA membership, you must pay dues by Tuesday, Feb 21. Dues are $55 for seniors (one semester) and $80 for all other members (two semesters/the calendar year).
Benefits include: Internship opportunities, scholarship opportunities, leadership positions, agency tours, National Conference, Regional Conference, PRSA dinners, and many other exclusive resources.
COMMUNICATIONS/PUBLIC RELATIONS TUTOR:
Need help studying? Emma Lipka is here to help! Office hours: Monday 1:30 – 3:30 Fell 116, Tuesday 3 – 5 Fell 140, Wednesday 6 – 8 Fell 116, Thursday 9 – 11 Fell 140, and Friday 12 – 2 Fell 116.
We are currently seeking a PRSSA dues-paying member (sophomore or junior) to represent our chapter at the National Assembly in Seattle, Washington as our National Delegate. The assembly takes place on March 30 – April 2. The trip will be funded by the chapter. Applications are due Thursday, Feb 2 and interviews will be held on Tuesday, Feb 7 before chapter. Please send applications to the chapter email email@example.com and let us know if you have any questions.
SPRING INTERNSHIP FAIR:
The Spring Internship Fair will be on Thursday, Feb. 2 from 4 p.m. – 7 p.m. in the Bone Student Center.
CAREER CENTER EVENTS:
On Thursday, Feb. 2 from 3 – 3:45 p.m. in the Bone Student Center the Career Center will be hosting “Ins and Outs of Internships: Guide to Understanding the Value of an Internship.” Stop by on your way to the internship fair! Registration is required. Please register here: https://events.illinoisstate.edu/event/ins-outs-internships-guide-understanding-value-internship/
Interested in going to graduate school? On Friday, Feb 3 from 12 – 1 p.m. in 110P Student Services Building the Career Center will be hosting “Graduate School Series: Graduate School Overview & Financial Tips.” No registration required.
REGIONAL CONFERNCE: DEPAUL PR PALOOZA
Regional Conference will be taking place at DePaul University in Chicago on March 3 and 4. DePaul’s PR Palooza is all about media and entertainment PR! The cost is $65 for members and $75 for nonmembers. Please let Deja know it you are interested in going! Registration ends Feb. 17. Register here! https://www.eventbrite.com/e/prpalooza-tickets-28643713117?platform=hootsuite
Being a member of PRSSA gives you access to potential scholarships. A full list of scholarships and application deadlines (deadlines vary among scholarships) can found here: http://prssa.prsa.org/scholarships_competitions/individual/
Congratulations Daina Sauls on your internship with the City of Bloomington.
Keep up the good work everyone!
Our next meeting will be on Tuesday, Feb. 7 in SCH 138 at 8 p.m.. We will be having a resume workshop! Please print and bring your resume if you have one!
Please follow the PRSSA social media accounts to stay up to date on news and upcoming events!
Use our chapter hashtag: #RedbirdPR
Like us on Facebook (PRSSA-Illinois State University)
Follow us on Twitter (@ilstuprssa)
Follow us on Instagram (ilstuprssa)
Follow us on LinkedIn (ISUPRSSA)
Add us on snapchat (RedbirdPR)
If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to ask! We are here to help! Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org
As a full-time student, member of a Registered Student Organization (RSO) and part-time worker, trying to make time for a social life can be difficult. It is often a challenge to balance everything. I am positive I am not the only one in this position. As busy students, it is important for us to know different ways to relieve our stress and make time for ourselves. College has taught me how to manage my time wisely, especially when the days go by so quickly. In addition, as public relations majors, we all know that this busy schedule will not go away after college. It is important to know how to handle stress and anxiety, given that it is an everyday issue for most students and professionals.
PR is known to be a very fast-paced and intense work environment, often requiring you to think on your feet. Getting used to this early on in your college years is essential to building your professional character. It is extremely important to get involved on campus to gain experience and help build your resume. However, it is just as important to look out for your health as it is to look out for your grades. Countless studies show the impact of exercise on stress relief. Not only is it physically good for you, but it also increases your brain activity. For example, Brianne Garritano, the lead Event Planner at Marquette Avenue Events, came into our chapter meeting to explain what she does on a regular day. As you can imagine, her schedule can get chaotic and stressful. She explained that she makes sure to workout every morning to clear her mind before the crazy workday takes over. Additionally, according to the article, “Physical Activity Reduces Stress”, written by the Anxiety and Depression Association of America, studies show that exercise improves alertness and concentration and enhance overall cognitive function. Clearly, exercise helps relieve stress, which is something that we all have in our lives as busy college students.
One type of workout that I find extremely beneficial is yoga. After doing yoga, I feel clear-headed, calm and stress/anxiety-free. Yoga consists of meditation and breathing techniques along with poses that require concentration and focus, which is a great way to get your mind off of the endless things that you have due by the end of the week. Yoga and meditation allow you to focus your energy on one thing, which is harder than you would think. For instance, Sarah Elson wrote an article titled, “4 Yoga Principles that can be Applied to PR,” on December 8, 2015 on PR Daily. She mentioned how important it is to focus all of your attention on your current task, tackling each task one at a time. Yoga helps relieve stress and anxiety in many different ways, and the practice can even help you in your professional world one day. If you have not tried a yoga class before, now is the time!
Lastly , I suggest everyone to take at least an hour of their day to just focus on themselves and their health, and I can guarantee that you will feel a tremendous weight lifted off your shoulders. Exercise is not only good for your physical health, but it also is essential for your mental health as well.
Written by Megan Rubinger
By now everyone is aware that Vine is shutting down. Vine is an app that allows users to upload and share personal 6 second looping videos. While rumors are circulating that parent-company Twitter might sell the app instead of deleting it entirely, it’s common knowledge to smartphone users that Vine’s popularity decreased since its launch in 2013.
This news is important for anyone aspiring to have a career in social media. Many of the app’s users rose to fame because of their Vine content. “Viners” such as Hayes Grier, Page Kennedy and Logan Paul became millionaires from the platform and have millions of followers on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. How did a 6 second video result in millions of dollars you ask?
This is the key for every social media platform. In Vine’s case, this is most likely why the company flourished and eventually failed. In the beginning, Viners would be contacted by a corporation asking to use product placement in their Vines. This was effective because Vines were shared and viewed by millions on the Vine app and, more importantly, on other popular social media platforms.
The trouble came when sponsorships on Vine became compared to sponsorships on YouTube. YouTube is similar to Vine in terms of uploading and sharing videos, but YouTube has a much longer video time limit than Vine. Longer videos mean larger content and greater opportunity for corporations to show actual commercials prior to a YouTube video. This was not an option for Vine: viewers would be unhappy if they had to wait through one full commercial before viewing a 6 second Vine.
Another major downfall for the app was Instagram’s video integration. When Instagram noticed Vine’s rising popularity, it was quick to add a short video feature to its own platform. This shifted attention away from Vine and onto Instagram. Instagram offered more. Users could post and share a combination of longer videos and pictures which was less restrictive compared to Vine’s approach.
This situation is a lesson for both sponsors and content creators to not rely too heavily on one social media platform. Many Viners are now losing their only source of income due to the Vine shutdown. The ones who will continue to succeed are those who used Vine to supplement their other social media, namely YouTube.
Social media is continually changing. Keep this in mind when building your professional or personal brand: What is popular in 2016 might not make it until the end of the decade. Always anticipate what is next.
Written by Elizabeth Lynch
The Cubs won the World Series after 108 years and finally broke the “Billy Goat Curse”. As a life long Cubs fan I was, and still am, beyond ecstatic I was alive to see it. Obviously it means a lot for the organization and the city to yet again to have a championship winning team. But what does this mean about the Chicago Cubs as a brand? I have an obvious bias when I say the Cubs are one of, if not the most, iconic baseball teams in the world. Along with that, the organization’s fan base has been one of the most loyal throughout years. This didn’t come out of nowhere. Wrigley Field is nicked named “The Friendly Confines.” How can you hate on that?
The whole notion of the Cubs is more then just a baseball team. It’s the history behind it and the commitment to the the Cubbies lifestyle. The real question is; will this historic win make anything but the team less likeable? You can look back and think about the fact that one of the most infamous nickname for the team was the “loveable losers.” The longest World Series drought and many brutal losses does that to a team. But, that’s what they were known and loved for.
Over the last few years this team has been anything but losers. Clearly we’ve seen a team determined and driven to win. People love winners and I really think that the Cubs have already set up a likeable team. The ball club and the organization itself are doing really well with moving the brand forward. Hashtags, like #FlytheW, are examples of how an old Cubs icon has made its way into modern media. The transition from the old Cubs to the new Cubs will be apparent in the way the brand markets itself as winners. I hope with a growing fan base people will appreciate what the Cubs brand stands for and where the team comes from.
Written by Manny Carrera
PRecisely PR is the blog of the Illinois State University Chapter of the PRSSA. We write about Chapter events, the public relations industry, member profiles, and more.