Ohio University ImPRessions

Ohio University ImPRessions

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How to have a Productive Summer, Without an Internship

July 25, 2015

By: Sammie Fisher, @SammieFisher3 

After failing to snag a last minute internship for the summer, I decided not to let my summer be a failure as well. I may have had to return to my old summer retail job, but at least I kept my employee discount and still managed to add a few new things to my resume. It’s possible to have a professionally productive summer without an internship! Here are a few ways to continue to build your resume:

Volunteer in your community

Volunteering is an easy way to gain new experience and to meet new people in your community. Not only does volunteering help those around you, but also helps you gain skills that you can apply to a job in the future. Not to mention it allows you to network with companies and individuals that can help your future job search.

Ask for more responsibility at a summer job

If you’re stuck back at the same summer job, ask to take it to the next level. Many managers would be happy to have someone assist with customer relations or even pass on some social media responsibility. Offering to help with merchandising in an old retail job can give you more knowledge on product placement and consumer behavior. Gaining these new skills will add to your resume!

Get an online certification

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The internet offers endless learning opportunities, and the learning doesn’t have to end when classes do. Getting a Google Analytics certification looks great on a resume and can be applied to future opportunities. Trying your hand at Code Academy is another way to gain new skills in between days at the pool and at your summer job. Online classes through your college are also available to help knockout some class credits while you have the time, giving you more time to take on new opportunities at school.

Find a new passion

There is more to life than working, so find a passion that you can carry throughout your life! Unique experiences and interests separate you from others and can actually help your future a great deal. You have time to experiment with new forms of exercise you might fall in love with, or a new outdoor activity that gives you an adrenaline rush!

Have Fun!

It’s okay to have a fun summer! Feel free to travel and enjoy the company of friends and family. Traveling makes you a more interesting person, and employers like interesting people! So don’t feel like taking that dream summer trip will set you behind your peers.

These are just a few of the ways to have a productive summer without an internship. Comment with any other ideas!

3 Reasons Why PR Students Should Utilize Ohio University’s Global Consulting Program

July 21, 2015

By: Elizabeth Papas, @elizabethpapas_

Ohio University Global Consulting Program GreeceMy summer break began in a more impactful way than I could have imagined. I spent a month abroad and completed a two-week business consulting experience in Thessaloniki, Greece. While in Greece, I spent time refining my research and consulting skills, enjoying delicious Mediterranean cuisine and making lasting friendships with both American and Greek college students.

My experience abroad was made possible by Ohio University’s Global Consulting Program. Ohio University’s College of Business offers this top-notch consulting program to students in multiple cities throughout the world. The program has partnerships with international universities and allows students to work in integrated teams that are made up of both Ohio University students and college students from their partner university.
Once abroad, each consulting team is paired with a company within their host country. The team has an initial meeting with their client where they learn about a problem the company is experiencing and has an opportunity to ask questions and gather information. The team then spends the remaining time researching their client’s problem, identifying steps to solve the problem and creating a report to present to their client at the end of the program.

Ohio University Global Consulting Program Students

Although GCP is a College of Business program, it is open to all Ohio University students and is an experience that can make an “imPRession” on anyone. As a PR student, I was able to absorb valuable knowledge and experience from GCP and for the following three reasons I recommend this program to all strategic communication majors.

1. You Can Learn From Your Peers

When I was assigned to a consulting team, it was no surprise that I was the only non-business major in the group. However, this turned-out to be a great experience for me because I was able to pick up new skills and learn from the business students. For example, my team members were able to introduce me to business report format and help me improve my Microsoft Excel skills. After having this experience, I am more confident in saying that our peers are one of our most valuable resources and you never know what you can learn from understanding another student’s perspective.

2. You Can Offer New Insight

As a Scripps kid, I was also able to add value to our team project. For example, I spent much of my time utilizing my research and writing skills by gathering information for our project and proof reading our team’s written report. The skills that I have learned as a strategic communication major helped me immensely and were extremely relevant in this business-focused program.

3. You Can Observe Another Culture

While abroad, I noticed many cultural differences but the most valuable difference was in the work ethic of my Greek peers. It was interesting to see the difference between the ways the American students worked compared to how the Greek students worked. For example, I am use to getting up early and consistently working on a project until it is complete. However, the Greek students are more thoughtful in their work and emphasized the importance of taking breaks and recollecting one’s thoughts. Overall, this cultural difference taught me to slow down in my work and strive to produce a higher quality result. The opportunity to observe another culture was one of the most impactful aspects of my GCP experience.

From one PR student to another, I highly recommend Ohio University’s Global Consulting Program when considering study abroad programs. The impact this program can offer to students of all majors is truly rewarding.

If you are interested in this program you can apply here: http://business.ohio.edu/about/centers-institutes/center-for-international-business/global-consulting-program/apply/

5 Clothing Companies Killin’ the Instagram Game

June 17, 2015

By: Ayla Apitsch, @AylaApit

These fashion accounts are becoming noticed through their strong Insta presence. Each account takes a slightly different approach, but all are still succeeding.

1. @FreePeople

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The perfect combination of nature, clothing inspiration and good vibes.  They value simplicity in showcasing their boho trends flaunting down the beach not just on models, but on their consumers too. A number of posts on their account features content sent in by fans of the clothing line.

2. @Nike

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@Nike features some awesome people completing some incredible feats in some pretty amazing places. From kids playing t-ball, to pro athletes, their Instagram showcases many ways you can #justdoit, all while sporting that famous Nike swoosh.

3. @MichaelKors

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It’s not just an Instagram account…it’s #InstaKors that sets this account apart from the rest.  You can like it, shop it, own it by registering for this easy, new way to scroll and shop the latests Michael Kors trends.

4. @Asos

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Their account features #tbt pictures of what inspires their vintage-renewed lines, as well as style guides and motivational pictures to get you through the workweek.  The @Asos Instagram account also features looks on, and by, the fashion stylists from their site, with advice tailored to you on the latest fashion trends.

5. @Burberry

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If you can’t indulge in their pieces on a college budget, at least you can feel a part of the experience with their behind-the-scenes looks that bring the brand to life.  From sketches to commercial sneak peaks, @Burberry lets you feel like a part of the action.

The Little Actions Matter

June 12, 2015

By: Katie Speice, @katiespeice

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Networking can be a daunting, dreaded aspect of public relations if one isn’t wired to love the flirty thrill of face-to-face communication. It is inevitable that a public relations professional is going to experience hand to hand, face to face, good, old-fashioned networking at some point in his or her career. However, increasing relationships on social media, and frequent online business, has left aspiring young professionals with sweaty handshakes and quivering voices when networking. I’ve scoured my favorite etiquette guides and tapped into the psyche of seasoned network pros to gather some tips and tricks of the trade.

First Impressions:

Networking requires strong body language and communication. No matter how impressive your resume may be, you need to hone in on your best presentation and people skills According to psychologist Albert Mehrabrian, these are the key factors in a first impression:

  • 55% Nonverbal communication (body language and appearance)
  • 38% Vocal Quality
  • 7% Words

Introductions:

Business introductions should be made based on the hierarchy of the relationship. If Mrs. Smith is the CEO and her employee Mr. Jones is introducing Ms. Hays, a new employee, the introduction should resemble: “Good morning Mrs. Smith (CEO). I’d like to introduce to you Ms. Hays, a new employee in our marketing department. Mrs. Smith is our new CEO.” You should always address authority figures first and introduce others  to them. The word you should follow to. Hence: “I’d like to introduce to you.”

Other tips:

  • Always stand up to shake the hand of the person you’re greeting. The only exception is if you are physically unable to do so due to personal or environmental reasons. This shows respect and attention for the person you’re greeting.
  • Remain engaged eye contact with you person you’re speaking to. Fail to do so, and you can appear uninterested and untrustworthy.
    • To best remember a new name be alert when the name is first introduced in the conversation. Then try to use the name frequently in your networking conversations. This will help with your retention. If you happen to forget the name, it is okay to something like, “I apologize but I’m a little forgetful at the moment; please remind me of your name.”

Conversation Topics:

To ensure smooth and intelligent conversations keep up to date on all current affairs and pop culture. This way you can easily bring into conversation, “What do you think of . . .” If you want to make the news, you have to know the news.

Other tips:

  • Master the art of listening. When you intently listen to others it makes you seem genuine and encourages open conversation.
  • Make sure to let the other person finish talking before you add your two cents.
  • Feel out a conversation to see when it is naturally coming to an end. As it draws to a close, include a few comments of appreciation or a closing comment on an already mentioned topic from your conversation. This way you ensure a concrete end to a conversation and leave it on a good foot.

Working United: An Experience in Cross Cultural Work Environments

June 10, 2015

By: Morgan Borer, @morganborer

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Understanding. Patience. Acceptance. Early on, these words were used in my education, before I really understood their meaning. While I now feel that I have a good grasp on each, and try to demonstrate these qualities in different areas of my life, this summer I grappled with an entirely new question. How do these apply in the workplace?

This summer, I am working as a Communications Assistant in the Russ College of Engineering and Technology for the International Space University (ISU). This is a nine-week professional development program covering a variety of disciplines. I have the unique experience of working with 111 individuals from 30 countries around the world, ranging from Poland to Saudi Arabia to China. These individuals have backgrounds in space exploration, science, engineering, technology, the arts and more. Despite their unique stories, there is one attribute that unites them: their love of space.

Before assuming this position, I had little experience working alongside international people. Will I be able to communicate with them? I am a 21 year-old journalism student from Toledo, Ohio. What could I possibly have in common with these cool space engineers? The answer? More than you might think.

During the first week of my internship, I struck up a conversation with Remco, a social media strategist from the Netherlands. Remco is heading up the ISU SSP15 Online and Social Media Campaign. He explained to me that in social media, he is completely self-taught. I shared my classes and experience in Scripps with him, and he suggested that we collaborate on the campaign. We found commonalities in our love for New York City and, of course, public relations.

I also met a man named Shripathi, a passionate, energetic photographer and video producer from India. He is one of the younger participants in the program, so it was easy to chat with him about campus, class work, and my desire to learn more about photography.

My advice on working with international people? Be open minded and ask questions. If you close yourself off from others, you’ll miss learning opportunities. Ask a lot of questions, even if they seem conventional. Don’t be afraid of small-talk. Recognize that common practices in the work environment in their country may be drastically different from those in the U.S., and find a common ground.

Talk about food. Seriously! Food unites people around the world. It’s an easy topic of conversation. People from other cultures love to talk about how big American portions are, and the fact that they’re scared of gaining weight when they come here (trust me, I heard it last night).

Learn from everyone, and let them learn from you. At work, I practice observation. Even if I don’t totally understand the language, I try to pick up on snippets of conversation and figure out what the topics of interest are. You can learn a lot by listening and paying attention. On the flip side, they’re going to ask you questions, so let them pick your brain about everything from the Cleveland Cavaliers to road signs.

While I can admit that I’m no space fanatic, I do love the people that I am surrounded by on a daily basis. They are extremely intelligent and inspiring. I’ve learned something from each person I’ve met here, and I’m excited to learn more throughout the summer.

Summer Interning: What can I expect?

June 9, 2015

By: CJ Riggs, @carla_riggs

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For anyone who has never interned before (like myself), you have NO clue what to expect, what you will be asked to do or how to come across as intelligent and knowledgeable. From professional tips, to the sticky situations, I am going to lay it all out for you.

First Nail-Biting Part of Summer Internships: Sending Millions of Applications

Once you decide you’re going to apply to your favorite company, keep in mind that each company looks for something unique. Sending a copy and past resume probably won’t appeal to the directors.

Be sure to customize your resume:

  • Use their language! (key words they’ve used in their application are a good way to trigger interest)
  • Focus on the involvement and experiences that will best market you! (it’s good to include what you do and are involved in, but just be sure to really highlight what you want them to see!)
  • Make it personal! (add in a sentence or a couple of key words that allow your personality and character shine through)

Most important tip: NO COMPANY IS OUT OF REACH!!

  • Don’t be afraid to apply anywhere. No company is too big or too “good”. An internship is a time for learning and growing.

Second Sweaty-Palm Part of Summer Internships: The Waiting Game 

And now, we wait

It can be really tough not to get anxious and overwhelmed if you haven’t heard back by March or April. Do not fear! A lot of employers take their time to get back about interviews, or second interviews.

Tips to staying cool, calm and collected:

  • Make a list and check it twice! Keep a running list of where all you have applied to, when their deadline is, who the contact person is and any information on whether or not they have a time frame for hiring.
  • Follow Up! If there is an organization you are really looking forward to working with, don’t be afraid to send an email to follow up about application status.

Third Pacing Part of Summer Internships: You’ve Got the Job!

Okay, now you can breathe. You have heard back from a company and THEY LOVE YOU! The hardest part is not wanting to pinch yourself back into reality. Your next step is probably a planning session.

Tips to looking and being the best you:

  • Dress for the job you want! Many people know the basics of work-appropriate attire, but what they don’t know is that there is a huge difference between dressing nicely and dressing to make an impression.
  • If the employer has ever seen a picture of you, try to wear that same outfit again, RECOGNITION IS KEY!
  • If you go on a second interview, wear the same thing OR something very similar. Nobody is going to think you’re gross for wearing the same suit.
  • Take extra copies of your resume, work samples and any other material they requested when you applied. (Not always, but sometimes they lose, forget or want to see your material again)
  • Write a ‘Thank You’ note. A little bit goes a long way. If it isn’t possible or appropriate to write a ‘thank you’ note, send an email thanking them for their time and express your excitement about the opportunity to meet with them.

Fourth Nervous Laughter Part of Summer Internships: Your First Day

Meeting new people and introducing yourself a million times is to be expected on your first. You may not remember any of their names, but they will know who you are. Start small and know who you work with and for. These are your VIPs when it comes to workforce family.

Tips to learning it and fitting in:

  • Even if you don’t know how to do something (something that isn’t a life or death situation) learn it and fit in! It is easy to look up information on basically everything. Don’t know how to use Hootsuite, NO PROBLEMO. There is a wonderful site called Dummies.com that will tell you step by step how to automate your tweet sending.
  • Don’t be scared to go to the bathroom or eat lunch. WE ARE ALL HUMAN! Your employer will understand that you need to use the restroom or that you like to eat lunch.
  • Always smile! It is harder for your employer to be mad at you for accidentally printing the same page 300 times instead of 30 if you have those pearly whites showing.
  • MOST IMPORTANTLY, don’t be afraid to be yourself.

The Legality Behind Live-Streaming

June 5, 2015

By: Gentry Bennett, @Gen_andTonic

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Periscope and Meerkat took over the news as the hottest social media of 2015. Soon after these popular apps launched, legal teams around the country worked to protect copyright infringement and other legal issues.

The legality of live-streaming has been an issue since the first days of YouTube, prompting an auto-filter for copyrighted content in YouTube videos. When the National Hockey League (NHL) decided to ban Periscope and Meerkat, it was clear that this was an issue that needed to be faced head on.

The NHL’s ban includes video footage of the arena within 30 minutes of the start of the game. The NHL, however, has a Periscope account with thousands of followers. Was banning these apps a strategy move to promote NHL sponsored content? It’s hard to say.

With the expectation that there will be a surge of sports leagues debating the legality of live-streaming, an article came out saying that Major League Baseball (MLB) was also going to ban live-streaming apps. This was proven false after Bill Schlough, CIO of MLB, denied the claim.

So where is it okay to live-stream? Kelly Gorgone has created a great infographic to decide just that.

Katy Perry has even gotten in on the debate, stating that live-streaming is the future and that it should be embraced.

“I think that, when you see a phone, that is like the new applause,” she said.

Saturday Night Live has joined in the live-streaming world with backstage content for it’s fans.

No matter the outcome of the legality of live-streaming, it will be interesting to see where the industry ends up.

Five Companies You Should Be Following On Social Media

June 4, 2015

By: Emily Barber, @emilybarbershop

With hundreds of posts filling our feeds every day, it’s easy to scroll through social media without actually seeing anything. Add in brands vying for your attention, and even your favorite restaurant might get lost in the mix. These particular companies excel at capturing and engaging their audiences with a strong social media presence.

1. Denny’s

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This classic restaurant stays up to date with pop culture references and humor that keeps followers entertained. With the majority of social media users being of the ‘millenial’ generation, Denny’s knows how to appeal to their audience.

2. TOMS

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This company has a major focus on giving back to communities, when customers buy a pair of their shoes, but every year TOMS also sponsors One Day Without Shoes. Just a few weeks ago, for every picture that was shared tagged with #withoutshoes, TOMS gave a pair of shoes away to a child need. Awesome pictures combined with compassionate acts makes for a great Instagram!

3. Taco Bell

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If you’re looking for something to spice up your Twitter feed, check out Taco Bell’s saucy posts. Recently, the chain launched their breakfast menu and accompanied it with the #BreakfastDefector campaign. Filled with mystery and excitement, this built up followers’ anticipation for the day when waffle tacos would be available.

4. Jeep

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Jeep is worth following, even if it’s only for the pictures of beautiful cars and scenery. This iconic automaker recently partnered with the upcoming music artist X Ambassadors. The band’s new hit “Renegade” conveniently shares a name with one of Jeep’s most popular models, making the duo a match made in heaven. Warning: pictures may cause wanderlust.

5. Anthropologie

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Aesthetically pleasing and perfect for inspiring crafts, Anthropologie’s Instagram is full of recipes, blog posts and outfit ideas. One of their recent posts even introduced a contest with a 500 dollar shopping spree up for grabs!

Caitlyn Jenner: A PeRfect transition

June 3, 2015

By: Erica Stonehill, @estonehill13

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** I will be referring to her as ‘Bruce’ and using the pronoun ‘he’ when speaking of events prior to June 1st and the public reveal of Caitlyn. 

If you’re at all up-to-date on current events or pop culture, this name should be familiar to you. A brief summary for those of you living under a rock: Bruce Jenner, 1976 U.S. Olympic decathlon gold medalist, and Kardashian reality star, revealed that he identifies as a woman during an interview with Diane Sawyer in April of 2015.

On Monday, Vanity Fair released the cover of their June issue: a physically transformed Jenner, with the headline “Call me Caitlyn.” The actual issue, complete with an entire photo spread and interview with Caitlyn, isn’t released until June 9, but this publication seems to be the perfect addition to a flawless transition.

Bruce had made it clear that he wanted to use his public platform to educate others and create awareness of the transgender community. That being said, following the Diane Sawyer interview, relevancy was an important factor in this release of information. There has been a series of TV specials, both focused on Bruce’s personal journey, as well as his family’s. This has allowed for a consistent, fluid conversation of not only what it means to be transgendered, but also what it means when a loved one identifies as transgendered.

Being in the public eye is often a double-edged sword. Bruce mostly had the opportunity to control the way his story was told, and he chose to keep it honest. During the special episodes we see his children work through different parts of his public transition, and while 90 percent of the time they are oozing with love and support, the remaining 10 percent is confusion and hardship. These tidbits of darkness are important because they keep this journey transparent to the public.

Along with Vanity Fair’s cover release on Monday, Caitlyn created her own official Twitter account and surpassed President Barack Obama as the fastest growing account, with over 1 million in four hours. While her story has just begun, Caitlyn is paving the way for not only transgender awareness, but acceptance across the entire LGBTQI community. Her emergence into the public is a delicate matter, but from a public relations perspective, it has been handled impeccably.

Going Green: How and Why Companies are Leading in Social Change

May 29, 2015

By Morgan Brenner, @morganbren

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“Reduce, Reuse, Recycle,” was the first environmental health lesson that most of us were taught in grade school. The environmental cause has expanded into far more since those days, with climate change and environmental social justice becoming a growing issue. Although many people look at this as a trend, sustainability in business is the way of the future. Many businesses make headlines for either innovative sustainability strategies, or for failing to do their environmental part.

Chipotle’s Non-GMO Effort vs. McDonald’s Food Makeover

In the news, recently, we have seen Chipotle take a stand against GMOs (Genetically Modified Organisms) and come out with a business plan that will make them able to rid of the trigger word in their restaurants. There has been a lot of debate over whether this is possible or not, since the history of food has been GMO friendly for many years. Whatever the reason, Chipotle has started a conversation on better food practices, putting them above their competition.

McDonald’s has been making an effort to be more transparent about their food and to implement healthy choices. They recently started their “Our Food, Your Questions” campaign, where people could ask question about how they were obtaining some of their ingredients. Since McDonalds is such a large company and there are so many regulations to abide by, it really isn’t possible to show the customer every factory and farm they use. And that’s also what’s upsetting people; that the videos have so many “farm-factories” in them. This brings up the question if it is possible for fast food brands that have been around for decades to redirect the conversation from unhealthy-fast-food-chain.

Dell & General Electric’s Money Saving Upswing

Most families had Dell Computers our generation was just a tiny tot. Now that Apple has almost taken over the electronics game, Dell is looking for a way to re-market themselves. In 2012 they released their Dell 2020 Legacy of Good Plan that has been putting their name back in the minds of American homes. Their plan enacts social and environmental change, which will publicly define them as good-doers, and privately save them a lot of money. Going green is not something people put together with saving money, but with copious amounts of waste reduction and all the tax benefits you can receive from state governments, it’s an obvious dollar saver.

General Electric is another company that you’ve probably heard your parents talk about, but don’t know much about. They actually have been doing well since their crisis during the recession. They have been redeeming themselves from dumping waste into the Hudson River by leading a huge clean up of that area. GE is also very committed to providing their customers with products that will reduce waste when being used. They develop wind turbines, solar panels and many other eco-friendly products. And speaking of savings, GE has reduced their GHG emissions 32 percent, and have reduced fresh water use 45 percent, saving them 300 million dollars.

Cleaner World – Better Business

The number of companies creating environmental change, and benefiting from it, does not stop there. Adobe has started Adobe Youth Voices, a program that donates software and teaches kids how to create multimedia projects around environmental and social change. Budweiser is saving 21 million pounds of metal every year by trimming an eighth of an inch off of the diameter of their beer cans. Coca-Cola is getting itself more involved in community recycling programs and is focusing on clean water, sustainable packaging and climate and energy protection. When money savings meets improved company to consumer relationships, you cannot go wrong with going green. Businesses everywhere have proven in the last ten years that without a sustainability plan, there is no future for them. I think we can all improve our own personal brands, and save ourselves money, by following the lead of these market moguls. Who would have known that our teachers were actual giving us a lesson in PR with “Reduce, Reuse, Recycle.”

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