College is a time for public relations majors to learn countless theories that will never be useful in the professional world, right? Wrong. On Tuesday Sept. 23, members of the Illinois State University Chapter of PRSSA gathered for the Central Illinois PRSA Chapter dinner to hear presenter Chris Orris, a public relations specialist from QuickSilver Edge Communication. Orris told his story of winning a Silver Anvil award by utilizing the tools and theories he learned as a public relations major at ISU.
Orris graduated from ISU in 2011. Formerly a member of ISU PRSSA, Orris began his post college career by teaching English to Korean students through the Chungbuk Office of Education. He began his public relations career while working in video game development with FullByte Games.
In 2013, Orris took a huge risk by taking on a client through the popular funding website Kickstarter. Orris was able to use his gaming knowledge and passion for independent games with his new client, a video game company, Snowed in Studios. With less than two weeks to raise over $30,000, Orris got to work with the help of his mentor and the knowledge he had garnered at ISU. The result was a brilliant campaign that was submitted for a Silver Anvil Award and won!
Orris’s story is remarkable for many reasons. He proved that when push comes to shove the fundamentals learned during your college education are useful. Only two years out of college Orris won an award that most public relations professionals only dream of while also helping an underdog gaming company achieve their goals. Orris’s story was an important reminder to students who will soon be working in the professional world that a campaign does not have to be flashy or complex to be successful; it just has to be done the correct way. Relying on the skills and theoretical concepts you learned from your professors at ISU can result in success and maybe even a Silver Anvil of your own.
By Becca Williams
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.