Ohio University ImPRessions

Ohio University ImPRessions

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4 Ways To Develop A Better Relationship With Your Mentor

February 17, 2015

By: Samantha Miller, @keepcalmsam14

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Being a part of such a great PRSSA chapter has given many of us the experience of being assigned a mentor. This is someone that we turn to if we have questions about the industry, our university, or pretty much whatever else we are curious about. Some, although, may not have a designated mentor, we all should have someone we look up to and turn to with our questions. While the point of this partnership is more on the professional side, that doesn’t mean that these relationships cannot develop into a more well-rounded relationship. By doing some simple steps, you will not only develop a mentor, you will also develop a friend.

  1. Meet with them regularly.

I know that we all lead very busy lives, but remember to make time for your mentor. Even if you can only meet briefly, grab a cup of coffee and chat for a few minutes. It’s just as effective. My mentor and I try to meet at least every couple of week, and it has allowed us to develop a better relationship. We really know what is going on in each of our lives and are also able to easily follow-up on topics we had previously discussed.

2. Find a common interest.

There’s a reason the two of you were matched, and it’s not just because you have the same career goals. You both have something in common that you may not even know about, so try to find it. Once you do, this will allow you to get to know one another on a deeper level. This interest could also allow the two of you to find activities to do outside of quick meetings. The common interest my mentor and I share is politics, and we found it almost immediately. We often send each other funny messages or photos relating to it. Those little connections make our relationship feel a little less serious, and much more fun.

3. Have a balanced meeting.

Don’t let serious topics dominant your conversations, not even the most passionate professional like talking about work all the time. By finding that common interest, you should be able to have a much more laid-back conversation. You will be able to focus much more on the content. The meetings I have with my mentor are about 40% career and industry related and 60% interest related. It creates the sense that you are having a conversation with a friend.

4. Have a two-way relationship.

This is not a relationship where you should expect to only take from your mentor. I know that I am constantly sending my mentor copies of my resume, press releases and sometimes even class essays. Something I often forget to think of is what I can do for her. Don’t be afraid to see if you could write a recommendation for your mentor, or just see if they can use your help with anything. If you can, then most certainly do it. It will mean a lot to them that you asked.

3 Categories to Organize your Stress

February 16, 2015

By: Hannah Tobin, @HanTobes

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BREAKING NEWS: Stress sucks. Unfortunately, it’s part of life ,and in case you didn’t know, stress isn’t going anywhere. As we grow up and life changes, so do the things that stress us out. Whether you’re a freshman stressing about declaring your major, a sophomore stressing about finding housing for next year, a junior stressing about internship applications or a senior stressing out about entering the real world, we all have stress. With that in mind, there are 3 categories you can break your stress into, which will help you deal with it in the best way.

1. FIXABLE: Do, Delete, Delegate or Delay

(These are the things you have the power to change right now)

  • Do: Complete the task at hand. Sounds way too simple, and with procrastination, this simple task can seem impossible. If you are stressed out for your test this week, sit down and study. BAM, problem solved. Now it’s not a guaranteed ‘A’, but it’s a step in the right direction! This is where you take initiative and get stuff done.
  • Delete: If it’s not important get rid of it. If something is stressing you out and doesn’t need to be, get it out of your life. Again, easier said than done, but life is too wonderful to get bogged down by unnecessary stress. Ditch things that are bringing you down.
  • Delegate: Find someone else who can handle the problem.  Adding to much to your plate is a reoccurring theme for college students. As students, we balance homework, group projects, extra curricular activities, jobs and our social life. Sometimes we need to remind ourselves to spread the work evenly. Don’t offer to write the group paper when you know you have a lot going on before that paper is due. Have those around you help with the workload, you’ll thank yourself later.
  • Delay: If you can’t do it now, wait until you can. There are some things that stress us out, but they are so far in the future that it’s better to press pause and wait till later. We can’t fix a problem that’s a year out. Much can change in a year, just refer to TimeHop. When the future is stressing you out, set it on the back burner, live your life.

2. GAIN UNDERSTANDING

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  • Not having the proper understanding of a situation can induce stress. We spend so much time fixated on not understanding, and over analyzing the problem, that it never gets solved. Next time you find yourself second-guessing a sassy text from your roommate, or interpreting your significant other’s weird comment, be direct and just ask them what’s up. You won’t be able to read their mind, so cut the stress and get clarification on the issue.

3. IT IS WHAT IT IS

  • This is the worst category. There will be things that stress us out, and they are completely and totally out of our control. We don’t have the option to do, delete, delegate, delay or understand; it’s just there. The sooner we come to terms with this, the better. Stress is a part of life, but coming to terms with it and managing it will lead to a happier, better life.

Now if none of those things worked, just print this out…

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Show Some Love for PR this Valentine’s Day

February 13, 2015

By: Jessica Carnprobst, @jess_carnprobst

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Valentine’s Day is almost here, and love is in the air. There are chocolates, teddy bears and roses everywhere, but this holiday is much more than all those things. It’s about celebrating all that you love, no matter what that is. So, for all you single ladies (and guys too, sorry Beyoncé forgot to include you) out there, don’t forget to love how we are in the public relations field.

We can do almost anything

Everyone needs public relations whether they realize it or not, which is great news for us. Whether you really love a food company, Disney World or a certain city, they can use your help! The sky is the limit for us, which gives us time to experiment and try new paths throughout our career. One thing is for sure, we will definitely never be bored.

We never stop learning

We are doing something new every day. We are constantly learning about a new client, or researching a specific product or service that a current client has, we will learn things throughout our lifetime that we never expected to learn. Also, we’re in a field that is constantly changing, forcing us to keep up on news, social media and emerging markets. We’re consuming new, relevant information, and it’s a true blessing to know that we don’t have to stop learning after we graduate.

It’s a very creative field with creative people

It’s so much fun to get to come to work each day and think up new, crazy ideas that are welcomed instead of scorned. Whether an idea is off the wall or not, it builds into something else. The people that hear this crazy idea will most likely think the same way, and it’s fun to all think up crazy ideas together.

Another plus to being in such a creative environment is the people. We get to work with unique, exciting people. This makes our job so much more enjoyable, plus, it’s nice to have cool work friends.

And last but certainly not least, the coffee. Don’t worry; I wasn’t about to forget that one. A field where people worship their Keurig is a beautiful idea. There are many reasons to love PR, and although you may not be rushing out to have a Valentine’s Day dinner in honor of public relations, it’s a field we know we can love throughout our entire career.

How to Fluff Up Your Valentine’s Day

February 12, 2015

By: Danielle McCarthy, @DanielleN_McC

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Valentine’s Day is upon us once again, and whether you are happily single or happily committed this heart-filled day, this day comes with certain expectations.

Maybe you are expected to have a romantic candlelit dinner with lots of eye contact, or go out with your significant other on Court Street, or maybe the expectation is to stay in with a box of Chinese food and a chick flick, sulking about the lack of love in your life.

It might be time to consider changing those plans, and hitting up The Fluff on Court Street. This is a great place to go with your significant other for a casual and inexpensive dinner, or to go with your friends and just enjoy the atmosphere.

The Fluff is committed to creating a casual and laid-back place to come and enjoy some sweet treats on Valentine’s Day. They will have a few tables available for reservation both Friday and Saturday night, otherwise they welcome walk-ins.

The specials range from red velvet cupcakes, to heart-shaped sugar cookies, to chocolate truffles. They will also still be serving their tradition Thai-infused foods, like curry and shrimp tacos.

Take your Valentine, whether it be your significant other, best friend, or a random off the street, and spend some time getting to know each other and The Fluff. Also, get a red velvet whoopie pie. It will change your life, I promise.

Fifty Shades of Hyped

February 11, 2015

By: Cameron Quinn

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I remember seeing “Fifty Shades of Grey” everywhere around my high school. My very opinionated senior-year journalism teacher expressed her thoughts on how ridiculous a book, which is practically an erotic novel, was. I told myself I would never succumb to the trend of reading such an explicit book.

This was two years ago, and here we are, with a countdown to the movie premiere. Unfortunately, I am also guilty of waiting in anticipation. After hearing snippets of the soundtrack (who doesn’t enjoy Beyoncé’s voice) and seeing my social media boom with sneak peaks and crazy girls talking about the one and only Christian Grey, I finally gave in. I was curious how something could bring so much hype for such an extended period of time. After reading the book, I am more than excited to see the premiere and drag my date along with me on Valentines Day.

I have to admit, reading something so explicit made me very uncomfortable at times. I realized it’s just one of those books you have to keep reading. After experiencing how successful it was, I’m fully looking forward to see this movie.

As if I wasn’t interested enough, I’ve found myself getting caught in the media trap of short sneak peaks with trailers and sitcoms on TV. One that stood out to me was a two-minute ad that Trojan made. It was a comical reenactment of “Fifty Shades of Grey” from the eyes of a reader. The star is your average woman looking for her Christian Grey in her own relationship. If you haven’t seen it yet, I’d highly suggest searching on YouTube “Trojan – 50 Shades of Pleasure”.

The media push trends onto society so much that it is difficult not to give in to the trends. The target audience, however, is no different than the audience for a Nicholas Sparks book. Females love reading about love, but who knew so many would love reading about love making. For all of my friends it was the same story—their mom read it and then they read it. The book targeted just about every woman there is, and I am sure the movie will bring in an endless crowd. Fingers crossed that it reaches all of the expectations the talented E L James has created for us hopeless, romantic women.

PR Skills Make Everything Easier, Even Sorority Recruitment

February 10, 2015

By: Corina Rolko, @CRolko

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Working long hours and balancing multiple projects at the same time are just two of the obstacles one will face as a professional in the public relations industry.  In fact, any student who is studying public relations, and staying involved in related organizations on campus, can already attest to that.  Although it can be overwhelming at times, the skills and lessons you learn as a PR student or professional will benefit you outside of a professional or academic setting.

Anyone who has participated in the sorority recruitment process, on either side, knows how overwhelming it can be.  The days are long and the heels on your feet are far from comfortable. However, as a junior studying public relations and advertising at Ohio University, the professional skills I gained have enhanced my life on a daily basis, but especially during sorority recruitment season.

Here are just a few examples of PR lessons or skills I’ve learned, which have gotten me through two years of formal recruitment with a smile on my face.

Time and task management skills.  At Ohio University, formal recruitment takes place within six short days. During these six days, recruitment starts early in the day and ends late. As a result of learning how to balance multiple clients and prioritize different tasks, I have learned to prepared to stay on top of school work, and still manage to get a good night’s rest during recruitment.

Communication skills.  Communication skills are necessary to be successful in most professions, but it’s central in the public relations industry.  PR professionals are constantly communicating with clients and their colleagues.  Therefore, holding a comfortable conversation with a stranger during recruitment is a simple task.

Working with others.  Cooperativeness is a personality trait found within many PR experts because in this profession you are typically expected to work both individually and on a team.  When striving to do the best work, or recruit the best new members, both require the ability to work with others toward a common goal.

Living a fast paced life style.  As a public relations student or professional, one has many responsibilities each day. In addition, you are expected to be able to stay on top of a workload that is constantly changing.  As a result, PR professionals live a go, go, go lifestyle, which makes the fast-paced, chaotic days of sorority recruitment a little easier to handle.

Expanding the Options of Campus Involvement

February 9, 2015

By: Allison Zullo, @allisonzullo

As students of the various majors in the Scripps School of Communication, we have been told, repeatedly, to get involved in student media and other organizations related to our field of study. As students interested in public relations, we were told that joining Scripps PRSSA and ImPRessions was crucial to the success of our future careers. We would learn essential skills, expand our networks and prepare ourselves for the professional PR world.

While its great to be so involved in strictly PR organizations, it is also important to branch out on campus. Joining different clubs can be a great way to meet people that aren’t majoring in strategic communication or journalism. It’s also a great way to learn new content and gain leadership experience, even if you are serving as a PR or marketing chair.

Getting more involved on campus may seem intimidating (and impossible, depending on your schedule), but here are just a few of the endless ways you can make it happen.

Professional Organizations

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Scripps PRSSA is a professional PR organization, but there are many other clubs on campus that help students develop professional skills, while building camaraderie among members and having some fun. If you’re getting a minor through the business school, you can join a business fraternity to meet other business students, polish your skills and expand your network. If you have a high GPA, consider joining an honors fraternity, where you can gain leadership skills while meeting people from different schools on campus. Finally, a small (shameless) plug for an organization I’m involved with, Student Alumni Board. It’s a professional organization that focuses on connecting current students with the Alumni Association and other OU alumni. All of these clubs are great ways to get even more involved on campus, while meeting new (non-PR) people, and building your network and skill set in preparation for the professional world.

Greek Life

Greek Life can be a great way to get more involved on campus and meet new people. Not only do you have a chance to befriend men and women from all different areas and majors, but you also have the chance to gain valuable experience by becoming a leader in your chapter. Nearly every sorority and fraternity has a vice president of PR, marketing, and/or event planning, which is a great way for PR majors to gain hands-on experience in their future career field. Each Greek organization even has a specified philanthropy event, which also allows you to get involved in the community as well as the campus. Plus, you immediately have a network of alumni across the country, and the world, which is pretty cool.

Non-Profit/Community Service Organizations

OU’s campus believes in service, giving back, and involvement in the community, so in turn, there are many organizations that focus on these values. The Make a Wish Foundation, OU End Slavery Movement, Relay for Life, and BobcaThon, are all organizations and events that focus on raising awareness and money for a particular cause. There are countless that aren’t even listed. In addition, service fraternities, such as Alpha Phi Omega, focus on performing community service, while also building leadership skills and fostering relationships. These types of organizations are for meeting people who are interested in, and passionate about, the same causes as you, or if you’re interested in pursuing a career in non-profit PR.

These are just a few examples of the many student organizations on Ohio University’s campus in which you can get involved. From professional organizations, to student government, to religious organizations, and so much more, there is a club for you, no matter what your passions and interests are.

Don’t be afraid to branch out and join a non-PR organization. You’ll end up meeting cool people, learn new skills, and fight for causes that you’re extremely passionate about. Isn’t that what college is about?

Best Cities for PR Professionals

February 5, 2015

By: Autumn Cooper, @autumncooper5

When it comes to world of PR, deciding where to start your career could have a huge impact on your future happiness, success, and salary in the industry. PR is such an exciting field and it could take you anywhere in the world. I love to travel so for someone like me, I love knowing that the field I chose could help me live out another passion of mine.

During the past couple of months, I have spent many hours online searching for an internship. With a willingness to relocate to anywhere the job requires, I noticed it was very difficult to decide what city to begin applying to internships in. I realized that if I’m having this much trouble with just finding a summer internships, then I can only imagine the difficulties a graduating seniors must be facing.

One thing you’ll learn is that you don’t have to be in the U.S. to take advantage of a great PR job. Whether you’re working for a firm, business, or a non-profit, PR can take you anywhere in the world. In my opinion, everyone should experience living in a different city at least once. PR is ever changing, just like the rest of the world; go experience it.

So here are some of the top cities around the world for PR professionals to take their career (in no particular order).

1. New York, New York

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New York is an obvious choice because it is highly concentrated with PR jobs. New York will give you a chance to work with some of the best in the field, and work for some of the top agencies in the world. If you can make it in New York, you can make it anywhere!

2. Washington, D.C.

Being the U.S. capital, there is also a huge concentration of jobs in D.C., especially political PR jobs. Not only is there a large amount of jobs, but they also pay well. The average salary in D.C. is almost double the nation’s average salary.

3. Seattle, Washington

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Seattle is one of the fastest growing cities in the U.S., and is absolutely beautiful. The PRSA chapter that started in Seattle is one of the 10 largest chapters in the country. Edelman, the world’s largest PR firm, has an office in Seattle, Washington.

4. Chicago, Illinois 

Chicago has a large amount of political, healthcare, and financial PR jobs. Whatever your interests are, Chicago most likely will have a job for you! Chicago is a great choice so you can still get the large city feel, but it can still feel like home, since it’s not as large as NYC.

5. London

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London has some of the world’s largest and best agencies (Ogilvy, Edelmen, and Weber Shandwick). International PR is becoming huge, and London is a great city to experience it in. I know after studying abroad in London this past summer that it is an amazing city to visit and live in. Definitely on the top of my list to live in after college!

6. Toronto, Ontario

Toronto has a number of opportunities, especially in public relations. Toronto has one of best strategic communications firms in the world, Fleishman-Hillard. Toronto isn’t just known for its job opportunities, but also its quality of life.

7. Boston, Massachusetts

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Boston has been ranked one of the top metropolitan areas for “PR Specialists.” This city will be a great city for PR professionals, no matter what stage of your career you’re in. It also thrives in culture, nightlife, and social interactions.

8. Sofia, Bulgaria

I love learning about PR opportunities internationally. There is an increasingly number of opportunities in PR that are happening outside of the United States. Sofia is home to M3 Communications Group, which won top PR Agency in Europe. I say you should book your flight and give it a try!

9. San Francisco/Los Angeles, California 

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Cities in California are known for their high pay. California gives you a wide variety of options for the type of PR job you could get. Whether you want a publicity job or work in healthcare, California has it!

10. Salt Lake City, Utah 

There is always something to do in Salt Lake City, with a variety of attractions like art galleries, professional sports, and festivals. These types of attractions will make your quality of life as a PR professional even better. To make things even better, Salt Lake City also has a large amount of PR/communication firms, non-profits, and corporations.

Why It’s Important for PR Professionals to Have Confidence

February 4, 2015

By: Jennica Lurie, @jennicalurie

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People have been telling us that “confidence is key,” since we were kids. As cliché as this phrase may be, it can be applied to every aspect of our lives, whether it is for social or professional purposes. Once we hit middle school, we realized that being socially confident was the only way we were going to survive. And now, here we are, making our way into the professional world, as we continue to be told, “confidence is key,” but don’t just write it off.

The Application Process

As public relations professionals, in order to be successful, we must have confidence in our abilities and ourselves. While applying for the jobs and internships of our dreams over the next couple months, it is vital to think back on our past successes and failures, and what we learned from them. These should be used to inspire us to continue putting all of our effort into our dream job, rather than letting our past mistakes scare us away from a new experience.  Be sure to remember just how much you’ve learned while you are updating your resume and how lucky that company would be to have someone as passionate as you working for them.

On the Job

You got your dream internship, congrats! But now, you’ve been given an assignment that you feel is utterly impossible for you to complete. There is no better time to look back at your past work than right at that moment. Read anything that has been published with your name on it, or even a paper that you got a good grade on. Whatever it is that will help you remember just how fantastic of a writer you are, and how successful you have been in the past. When you are done reliving your accomplishments, try going at it again. I guarantee it won’t be as hard after you remind yourself that you can do it.

Recommendations

After you have completed the internship, and provided your absolute best work, it’s time to prepare the application for the job. A part of the application is asking your internship advisor for a recommendation. At this point, you must have confidence that you did your best work during your time with the company. This recommendation could advance you greatly, but you must have the confidence in yourself to ask for it.

Don’t Overdo It

If you are picking up what I’m putting down, then you understand how important it is to believe in yourself. Once you have the power to inspire yourself to be the best public relations professional that you can be, you will be able to encourage others to do the same. This does not mean you should believe you are better than everybody else, or that you have nothing left to learn, but instead that you put your heart into everything, and as a result, reached success. Next time you begin to doubt yourself, remember your past accomplishments, and never stop working toward your PR dream.

The Advantages of Being a College Student

February 3, 2015 1 Comment

By: Morgan Borer, @MorganBorer

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Last semester, I took World History Since 1750, to fulfill my history requirement. There were mostly freshman, but sprinkled in there was a handful of sophomores and juniors. Somewhere between discussion of the Cold War and the spread of anti-colonial movements, my professor said something that has been etched in my mind ever since. While vehemently urging us to attend an extra credit presentation in Baker Theater, he said “Never again in your life will you have access to this many free resources. After college, you have to pay for everything. Take advantages of these opportunities while you can.”

While I may not recall the details of Jospeh Stalin’s reign, I definitely remember this. As a stereotypical Scripps student, I enjoy being overloaded with classes and student organizations. In the midst of these things, it is easy to forget about the wealth of on-campus resources that OU provides, specifically resources for Communications and PR students.  It is crucial, however, to make time and take advantage of them. After all, most of us only have four (maybe five) years to do so. These opportunities won’t last forever.

The Career and Leadership Development Center

The Ohio University Career and Leadership Development Center provides students with resources in several areas. These include choosing a major, exploring career options, and applying for graduate school. They help students develop leadership skills and work to accomplish career goals. During my first appointment, a faculty member reviewed my resume, LinkedIn profile, and gave me advice about searching for summer internships. The CLDC is open for 10 minute drop-ins Monday-Friday from 11 a.m. – 5 p.m., or 30 minute coaching appointments, which can be scheduled by calling 740-593-2909. They are located on the 5th floor of Baker Center. To learn more, visit their website at http://www.ohio.edu/careerandleadership/

Mock Interviews

The CLDC also offers a Mock Interview Program, which helps students prepare for employer or graduate interviews. These 30 minute mock interview sessions are conducted face to face, over the phone or via Skype. I have never done a mock interview, so I decided to register for a date in February. The CLDC is holding sessions on Thursday, Feb 12 from 10 a.m. – 3 p.m. in Baker Center 507. To register, you must activate your Bobcat CareerLink account at https://ohio-csm.symplicity.com/students/

BobCat Careerlink

In the past few months, this has become my go-to resource for everything job and internship related. Bobcat Careerlink provides current OU students and alumni with job and internship postings from a wide variety of fields. It allows users to post resumes, cover letters, transcripts and other documents online for employers to view.  All OU students are automatically registered for Bobcat CareerLink. Since I have started using this website, I’ve found several postings for summer internships in PR/Marketing/Communications. I’ve also registered for on-campus interviews and the Spring Career and Internship Fair, held on February 17-18 in Baker University Ballroom. To access Bobcat Careerlink, go to http://bit.ly/11bUtvD

Scripps PRSSA

Finally, there is arguably no better resource for aspiring public relations professionals than our very own website, scrippsprssa.org. The “Chapter Events” sidebar includes all upcoming events, conferences, meetings, etc. within the chapter. I refer to this weekly to ensure that I am informed and updated with all things PRSSA.

I whole-heartedly encourage you to take advantage of these free campus resources and search for more!

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