My Favorite Things ImPRessions Has Taught Me

By: Elise Mills, @itsELISElove

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Bright copper kettles and warm woolen mittens, brown paper packages tied up with strings, these are a few of my favorite things.

Teamwork really is dream work

PR is not a one-man show. No one person can successfully create and implement a campaign, though some will try. Each associate brings a different set of strengths that will further the account, and everyone trying their best creates unbelievable results.

Content is King

And research is Queen. Just because you have a great headliner, or idea does not guarantee its success. You must have content to back up that great idea. I loved learning that I had to do more than just come up with great ideas, I needed to put the work in and create the entire picture, not just one piece.

A campaign without a goal is not a campaign

Campaigns can run anywhere from hours to months, so having tangible goals is the best way to keep your account motivated. How can you achieve a goal you don’t know you have? You have to determine the amount of imPRessions, interactions, or anything else you are hoping to measure your level of success. Then, help the associates learn how to measure this success; it is a great award to achieve your goals.

Anyone can be a PR Star

The great thing about ImPRessions is that you are not alone. You have other associates, Assistant Executives, Executives, Supervisors, and others who are all rooting for you and are willing to help. Any plant provided with food, water and sunlight will continue to grow, and I have learned this past year that ImPRessions gives you all the tools to succeed. All you have to do is want it.

Find Your Focus: How to Narrow that Over Involvement

By: Sam Miller, @keepcalmsam14

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I’m sure we all remember our first weekend on campus. After a riveting speech from President McDavis, your entire class marches up Richland Avenue to College Gate, and here you truly become a bobcat. Another event that everyone undoubtedly remembers is the involvement fair. Hundreds of organizations, and thousands of students, crammed onto College Green, each of them trying to find the place they want to get involved. If you’re like me, then you probably signed up for at least 10 clubs, but you only became a member of about half of them.

Fast forward to the end of the year. You’re beginning to realize that you are spreading yourself a little too thin with your involvement and you need to cut back. But where do you even start? I am currently having this experience, and was recently given some advice on how to limit my involvement to three activities, and I’m passing it along to help all my over-involved friends out there.

1. Keep it professional

When it comes to deciding on organizations to keep, the one at the top of the list could be your pre-professional organization. These organizations for all the PR stars out there would be PRSSA, ImPRessions, SPJ, or Ad Club. These are the organizations that focus on your development and are going to arm you with the skills that will make you extremely hirable as you make your way into the work field.

2. Stay true to your values

The next organization that you should be sure to keep is any that advance your values and opinions. It is important to not lose sight of the things you believe in as you make your way through college. These organizations will help you do that. Examples of these organizations include any political parties student organizations, those with affiliation to special interest groups, or ones that have religious connections.

3. Having Fun

These groups are the ones you do for the heck of it. Your involvement in these groups should serve as the place where you forget about classes and go to relieve stress. These could include anything from a group that talks about your nerdy TV obsession, or one that works to give back to the community. Never underestimate the importance of keeping one of those organizations. It could be the one thing that keeps you sane.

Bonus: Once you choose your three organizations, it is then up to you to gauge your involvement in them. It is important to focus on the quality of your involvement as opposed to the quantity. If you devote all your time to one organization, and can only attend one meeting a month in the other two, do that. The people running the organizations will totally understand because we’re all college kids and we’re all in the same boat when it comes to involvement.

Who in the World is Sarah Rachul?

By: Austin Ambrose and Sarah Rachul, @tex_ambrose and @SarahMRachul

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Sarah Rachul, current Junior Assistant Director and rising Executive Director of our PR firm ImPRessions. Outside of the professional realm, how much does anyone know about Rachul? Well, here’s an opportunity to get to know the woman in charge. We’re breaking down the barrier. Maybe you’ll have more in common than being in ImPRessions.

Where are you originally from and where did you go to high school?

I’m originally from Westlake, Ohio which is just outside of Cleveland. I was actually homeschooled through high school because I was a competitive golfer and traveled so much for that, and for trips with my family.

Why did you come to OU to study strategic communication?

Well obviously the E.W. Scripps School of Journalism has an amazing reputation, as does its faculty. But a big part of me choosing this school in particular, was the opportunity to join award winning PR programs like ImPRessions and PRSSA. I not only wanted classes that could prepare me for the real world but professional organizations that would help me get a job.

Why did you join ImPRessions and why have you stuck with it all these years?

After my first ImPRessions kick off freshman year, I knew that I wanted to be Executive Director and that became my goal for the next three years. Besides working to achieve that goal, I loved all the actual work I did for ImPRessions. Getting to work with three different clients and generate portfolio work was amazing. I love that ImPRessions can help you build your brand and your reputation as a rising PR star, while you’re still in college.

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What else do you do on campus?

In addition to my heavy involvement with ImPRessions and PRSSA, I am also a tour guide. Because of the time these commitments take, I don’t have a lot of time for other campus involvement. However, I was recently named the 2015-2016 Victoria’s Secret PINK campus ambassador so I look forward to my involvement with that next year.

What is your guilty pleasure movie?

My favorite guilty pleasure movie would be the BBC version of Pride and Prejudice. The total length of the movie is 5 hours so the guilty part is that I’ll make snacks and watch the entire thing straight through on Sundays.

When you think of middle school, what song comes to mind and why?

I would have to say the song “Into the Woods” from the musical of the same name. When I was in middle school, I was an actress/singer/dancer and often performed in musicals. When I performed in this particular musical, we would play the soundtrack (and this song in particular) every time we were in the car. We played it so much that even my 1 year old cousin had the chorus memorized.

You’re stuck on a desert island, who is the one person with you and the one item you have?

I would have James Bond and a deck of cards. I choose James Bond because I figure that if he goes missing then someone is going to try and rescue him and when they do I’ll get rescued too. The deck of cards is to entertain us while we wait for the helicopter.

Some know that you are a big fan of Disney, what makes you such a fan?

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Honestly there are many reasons Disney is so close to my heart. It’s the place my family has been visiting since I was a baby which means I’ve been able to gather 21 years worth of memories in Disney. When I think of my childhood, I think of every trip to Disney and when I think of my happy place, I think of walking down Main Street in the Magic Kingdom. I also admire Disney as brand. They consistently top the list of companies with the happiest employees and the happiest customers. I could go on  and on but I’ll just say that when they claim to be the place “where dreams come true”, it’s not a gimmick.

What is your favorite thing about being at OU?

My favorite thing about being at OU also happens to be my least favorite thing about OU. I love the small college town feel at this school. I was immediately charmed by the brick lined streets and the tiny coffee shops on my first college visit. Living at OU is like stepping into a post card. However, you realize it’s just a little too small when you have to drive 40 minutes to the nearest Target.

What advice would you give an incoming freshman?

Don’t only get involved in what you think you should be involved in. Get involved with as many things that interested you because that’s the only way you’ll know what you really want to do. Also, there is no such thing as being over involved. There is no such thing is reaching too far or too high. “Don’t tell me the sky is the limit when there are footprints on the moon!” – Brandt Paul.

The newest place on the block: West Side Wingery

By: Ashley Ince, @ashley1nce

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From the owners of Fluff Bakery on Court Street, one of ImPRessions’ lovely clients, a new, local Athens restaurant is already becoming a big hit. Opening only a few weeks ago, West Side Wingery is a place to check out. Not only does West Side Wingery have great wings, but they have killer tacos, burritos, and sandwiches.

Here are three reasons why you should go:

1. Different than most wing restaurants

West Side Wingery is located on 9 N. Shafer Street. Its affordable and stylish, with its graffiti walls and decorated signs. You can expect a diverse selection of wings and there are many unique options for you to choose from.

2. The menu has variety

It may be called West Side Wingery, but that’s not all that they specialize in. Not feeling wings? That’s fine, there are also tacos and burritos for those who want to change it up. The specials they offer add a different kind of eating experience, like their basil and beat taco with caramelized onions, or their BBQ rib burrito.

3. Down to earth atmosphere

Great service, and friendly employees definitely make any dining experience better. The workers here are very casual and will help you decide what to get because there are so many great options.  Its smaller size makes it very comfortable and intimate. You can enjoy your meal without having to talk over the people eating around you.

If you like wings and want to try something different, West Side Wingery may be the new place for you. Check out their Facebook page to see some more of their specials!

Do as I say, not as I do – senior advice on my freshman mistakes

By: Logan Trautman, @logantrautman

Sincerely-Seniors

It could be the fact that the final semester of my final year at OHIO is quickly coming to a close, but recently I’ve been reflecting back on the last four years. As I try to plan my post-grad life, when I’m not hyperventilating, I catch myself thinking what I would have done differently in the years leading up to these final months to better prepare myself for what lies ahead.

Internships are not for upperclassmen only

I have held three internships since being in college; all three took place within my junior and senior years. It is easy to think that you have endless time at OU, but please, go explore the world of internships early. You probably won’t get the internship of your dreams as a sophomore, but gain the experience now that will help you secure that dream internship as a senior. Plus, why wouldn’t you rather do a fun, worthwhile internship, rather than a summer job passing out free samples at Costco? I’m not sure either, ask my underclassman self.

Seniors are not scary

As a freshman, I was terrified of seniors. Who wouldn’t be? They looked like they were ten years older than me, they beamed professionalism, and they could drink… legally. As a senior, I love freshmen. In fact, the freshmen on my ImPRessions team are a few of my favorite people in Athens. As a freshman, you are encouraged to network, but approaching someone who is soon to graduate while you still have the “greatest four years” ahead of you is intimidating and easily avoided. As a senior, I welcome any underclassman that allows me to ramble about college. A bobcat is a bobcat, regardless of class rank.

Do not underestimate the power of a good schedule

Every semester, we all face the same slightly irritating routine of scheduling classes. As much as you want to take classes with newly made friends, in buildings that are only a five-minute walk, choose wisely. The hard truth is that some professors are better suited for you than others, and some courses will teach you more than you expected. Do your research, talk to upperclassmen, and take classes that will benefit your learning experience. I know taking a course in scuba diving is tempting, but think about your future!

There are clubs that exists outside the Scripps world

The world of Scripps is fascinating. It presents you with such a diverse group of people and opportunities. You know what other world is fascinating? The business world, or fine arts, or even the engineering world! It’s easy to get caught in the Scripps bubble, but explore! Join organizations comprised of people in all different majors. After all, in PR, it’s your job to know EVERYONE!

Introducing the Administration: Senior Director Kerry Tuttle

Have you ever wondered, “Who are these people that send me emails from the OUImPRession’s Gmail?” Well, here’s a chance for you to get to know those names, and not just what their position is in the firm! Kerry Tuttle is the first of the administration to offer herself as tribute. See what she is all about, you may realize you both never left seventh grade (in your music taste).

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1. Where are you from? 
I’m from Macedonia, a suburb 25 minutes south of Cleveland. I went to Nordonia High School and graduated in 2011​.
 
2. Why did you choose Ohio University?
I made the mistake of visiting Ohio University first and no other college even came close after that. I actually committed to a school to play volleyball, but my heart was always set on Ohio University so I retracted my commitment at the last minute and came to Athens. Best decision I’ve ever made.
 
3. How did you end up at ImPRessions?
I joined ImPRessions the winter quarter of my freshman year after realizing getting involved with major-related activities would probably be a good idea. I honestly can’t remember how I learned about it, but I do know that I had so much fun starting out on the Scripps account. It’s been my favorite student organization all four years.
 
4. What are your guilty pleasures?
If you put a bag of chips and a jar of salsa in front of me, both of them would be gone in less than ten minutes. I also have a deep love for early 2000’s rap and hip hop, so I am queen of all the middle school throwbacks. I’ve basically been listening to the same music since seventh grade.
 
5. Where do you hope to be in five years?
In five years, I hope to be in Chicago doing meaningful work at a company I love (and that pays for my MBA). I hope that I’m able to travel frequently, laugh often and pay all my bills on time.
Be on the lookout to learn more about the other administration members! 

For all the Incoming Scripps Kids

By: Kelly Hayes @kmshayes

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It’s almost here: the day when you finally walk through College Green and are officially a Bobcat. We are one giant happy family, with a few mishaps here and there. However, for all of you freshman new to the Scripps school, you made the right choice. Welcome to the happiest place on earth.

As a senior entering my last semester at Ohio University, I can only enter it with bittersweet feelings. This summer I spent my time interning at Ogilvy & Mather in Chicago, ready to enter the adult world… boy will I miss Scripps.

What to expect your first few weeks

You are going to go to many, many meetings. I encourage you to go to as many as you want. Sign up for every email list possible, because to find your niche in Scripps you have to try. I signed up for four email lists when I was a freshman – Thread Magazine, PRSSA, ImPRessions and RTDNA. I stuck with two: PRSSA and ImPRessions.

Don’t feel pressured

You do not have to stick to one track. If you want to write for the post and work with WOUB, go for it! The amazing thing about Scripps is that you have the advantage to do what you want to. You’re not stuck in one place because that’s the norm, we all have different paths within the Scripps school – and it’s made us better journalists, writers, editors, PR professionals, advertising gurus and broadcast anchors because of it.

Speak up and try

You won’t know if you like something until you try. Volunteer if it sounds interesting to you. I volunteered for so much in the beginning and it started to overwhelm me a little, but many people will be in the same position as you. And for all the seniors – we’ve been there and won’t bite. Scripps kids stick together.

Talk to your professors, they are much cooler than you think

I would give a shout-out to all of my favorite journalism professors right now, but I’d just be listing all of them. I’ve never had a bad professor, and they give amazing advice. When I had my phone interview for Ogilvy & Mather, I went to Professor Farkas asking for advice –it definitely was great advice because here I am, eight weeks into my dream internship.

Say Hi

Again, we seniors don’t bite. I always love meeting new people in Scripps and helping them out with anything they need. If you’re a freshman, say hi. I was a shy person my freshman year at those PRSSA and Thread meetings, but eventually I just said hi and it all worked out.

Be prepared for the best three to four years of your life

2014-07-10 18.09.06I say three to four because I’m graduating a semester early, but I wouldn’t be where I am today without Scripps. I’ve accomplished so much in my college career with the help of ImPRessions, PRSSA, my professors and friends. I will be very, very sad to leave this place in December, but I know I can always come back and visit the place that helped me get to where I am today: The E.W. Scripps School of Journalism.