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

By: Logan Trautman, @logantrautman


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!

Managing 2 Internships at Once

By: Lindsey Zimmerman @lindseyzim716

lindseyofficeIt’s 7 a.m. on a weekday, and I’m getting dressed and ready to head off to my internship at Battelle Memorial Institute. While my straightener is heating up, I grab my phone and get on Twitter. No, not to check my own feed and notifications – I’m taking a few minutes to tweet on behalf of College Tourist as part of my second internship.

That’ll be my morning routine for the better part of the summer, during which I’ll be working not one but two paid internships. I show up onsite every day at Battelle for my corporate communications internship and work remotely as a social media virtual intern for College Tourist.

The fact that one of my internships is virtual makes things a lot easier as far as time management goes. I work at Battelle from about 8 a.m. until 4:30 p.m. and devote some time in the evenings to getting all of the next day’s social media posts for College Tourist written and scheduled (thanks, Hootsuite!). Now that I’m a few weeks into it, I definitely feel like it’s something I can manage. The secret to surviving two internships at once is simply using your time well.

theresaHaving a virtual internship as one of the two positions is one thing, but what about having two onsite internships at the same time? As crazy as it sounds, it can be done. Former Scripps PRSSA Executive VP and 2014 graduate Theresa Ianni did it last summer, gaining both agency and non-profit experience at AKHIA and the Greater Ohio Chapter of the Lupus Foundation of America respectively. She said that although doing two internships wasn’t her original plan, she accepted positions at both companies after finding out that each of them would need her on opposite days of the week.

Even though doing two onsite internships at the same time might seem like even more of a challenge than having one onsite and one virtual internship, the secret to pulling it off is still the same: time management. With a little bit of preparation and organization, it can be done.

“The hardest part was remembering what time I had to report to each office and how long the commute was – I couldn’t get my days mixed up! But, I packed my lunch the night before and woke up with plenty of time to get to each office,” Theresa said. “While at the office, I made a day’s to-do list to keep me on track. At both internships, I had some assignments that were higher priority, so I always made sure to complete those first, and always communicated with my supervisors regarding deadlines.”

Although it’s undoubtedly challenging to complete two internships at once, Theresa said she’s glad she did it and recommends that other PR students consider it if the opportunities align.

“There’s so many directions you can go with a public relations major, and so many great companies that need PR,” she said. “Never sell yourself short, and always keep an open mind.”


How to De-Stress After a Tough Day

As an overachieving Scripps student my days can be pretty demanding, with some days even lasting from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. When you are trying to balance multiple clubs, extracurricular activities and a full class load, the stress can add up. We all have those days where we feel like we are being pulled in so many directions that we are on the verge of snapping. That’s when it becomes important to find the right ways to unwind from the chaos and gain some stability. Here are some of my favorite methods for relaxing after a stressful day.

Exercise. Exercising is one of the best ways to relieve stress. It has been proven that an increased heart rate can reverse negative damage to the brain caused by stress. Exercise also allows the body’s systems to communicate more closely. This can increase cognitive function and improve your mood, decreasing stress levels. This is one of the best means to relax because not only will you feel better mentally, but physically as well! destress

Listen to Music. If you don’t feel like your body could handle exercising after such a long day, listening to music is a perfect relaxation method. Put together a playlist of your favorite songs and tune out the world for a while.  Putting your headphones in can help you escape reality and will give you some much-needed “me” time to decompress.

Cleaning/Organizing. One of the best techniques to de-clutter your mind is to de-clutter your surroundings. Organize your room, notes for classes or even your refrigerator. Get an agenda, write down all of your important dates and meetings to help you stay organized, and on top of your life. Just the simple act of cleaning out your desk can change your outlook on the day and put you in a brighter mood. Once you become organized, the stress will start to disappear.

Goal Setting. If you are under a lot of pressure, one of the best ways to manage is to make a set list of goals for yourself. This can help you get a handle on what you need to accomplish and will give you something to strive for. But don’t forget to reward yourself! If you have rewards or incentives for accomplishing your goals, it will make it that much easier to accomplish everything on your list.

Time with Friends. They say that laughter is the best medicine. So the next time you are feeling stressed it might be best to grab some great friends and have some fun! Get dressed up and go out, or put on your sweats and watch a movie. Either way, take some time away from all the tension and let loose with your besties!

– Lauren McKinzie is a sophomore studying strategic communications with a minor in business. Follow her at @laurenmckinzie1.

Study Abroad Tips for a First-Timer

Study abroad tips for a first-time traveler, by a first-time traveler

Oper LeipzigThis summer, I had the opportunity of a lifetime studying abroad with the Scripps College of Communication in the historic city of Leipzig, Germany. It was one of the most rewarding experiences of my life, but it wasn’t without its challenges. Here are a few things I learned as a first-time international traveler that will hopefully be useful to future Bobcats looking to explore the world.

Understand conversion rates for temperatures, distance, currency and anything else. “It’s supposed to be a nice day. I think it’s going to be 25 degrees,” one of the German students remarked as he talked about the weather. I was confused – to me, 25° is cold! It took me a second to realize he was speaking in terms of degrees Celsius, and 25°C is 77°F – very nice weather indeed. It might take a while to get used to hearing measurements given in meters and liters and degrees Celsius, so try to gain a basic understanding of the system as soon as possible.

No matter how open-minded you are, expect culture shock. Other countries do certain things very differently than we do in the U.S. From paying a small fee (about 50 euro cents) to use most public restrooms to the lack of air conditioning in many buildings, I experienced my share of minor inconveniences while abroad. And be prepared for reverse culture shock upon coming home as well – my first night back in the U.S., I couldn’t figure out why it was so cold inside every building. Apparently I got used to living without AC!

Document your experience as much as possible. I contributed to three blogs while overseas: the Ohio University Office of Education Abroad’s blog; Borderless Bobcats, the group blog for our team in Leipzig; and my own personal blog. I also took hundreds of pictures and held onto little keepsakes such as my ticket from the soccer game we attended and a matchbook from one of my favorite restaurants. Documenting my trip through many outlets makes it easy to go back and browse through the memories when I’m feeling nostalgic.

Homesickness will set in at one point or another. For me, it happened Memorial Day weekend. My friends back home were posting pictures on social media of patriotic picnics and barbecues. Lots of people had the day off from work and school, but in Germany, it was just another Monday. This made me realize how much I love spending time with my family and friends in the summer, and I have a new found appreciation for that now.

Consider the significance of your experience – you’ll appreciate it even more. One of my favorite days of the entire trip was when we traveled an hour north of Leipzig by train to Berlin. Today, you can walk across Germany’s capital city from east to west without either presenting documentation at a military checkpoint or running into a wall. Twenty five years ago, that wasn’t possible. Part of what made Berlin so amazing for me was the sobering thought that not long ago, this modern, thriving city was the epitome of Cold War hell.

Being a tourist is fun. One weekend, I flew to Italy for a trip with three other girls. We snapped pictures of each other at all kinds of monuments, including the obligatory photos of ourselves “grabbing” a pillar on the Leaning Tower of Pisa. The word “tourist” comes with a stigma, but don’t shy away from the typically “touristy” things – after all, who’s going to believe that I went to Rome if I don’t have a picture of the Coliseum to prove it?

-Lindsey Zimmerman is a sophomore with a double major in public relations and broadcast journalism. Catch up with Lindsey at @lindseyzim716.

5 Challenges of Switching a Major into the Journalism School

ScrippsSwitching your major in college is one thing, but switching into the prestigious E.W. Scripps School of Journalism is another story.  Personally, I didn’t know what I wanted to major in coming into college, so I scanned through the majors offered at Ohio University as I was applying.  By the time I got my acceptance letter, I had forgotten what I even chose to major in.  As I’m going into my sophomore year, I’m about to apply to the J-School for spring semester.

I imagine many other students are in the same boat, and probably facing the same challenges as I am. Make sure to keep the following in mind before applying for the school.

1) Recommendation Letters One of the main challenges I’m facing with this process is finding people who can write recommendation letters about my journalistic abilities. Since I did just realize this year that I love writing, I only took two journalism classes.  One of which was a huge lecture hall, so there’s no way my professor would even know my name, let alone write me a letter recommending me. This upcoming semester, I’m taking two more journalism classes, so I’ll be looking to build a relationship with my professors in hope that they will be able to write me a recommendation letter.

2) Examples of journalism work Having just realized that I want to be a journalism major this past year, it’s been challenging to get professional samples of work to be able to submit with my application.  However, I did talk to a professor in Scripps, who suggested I join ImPRessions and PRSSA.  From there, I have learned so much already, and he also suggested that I join as many clubs that I can.

3) The Pressure I thought getting into college my freshman year was stressful, but now that I’m already enrolled at Ohio University, there’s so much pressure to get into the major I want because if I don’t, I might not graduate on time.  If denied acceptance into the E.W. Scripps School of Journalism, it is required to wait a whole year to reapply.

4) Resume building Not having much experience in anything related to journalism makes it hard to have a perfect resume that makes you look like you know what you’re doing with your life.  Using InDesign to create your resume at least gives it a professional look.   Also, asking professors and other J-School students to critique your resume will help make it get that much closer to perfection.

5) Getting help It’s challenging having to ask for help because you don’t know what you’re doing.  Transferring your major to journalism is a difficult process, but asking for help is the only way you’ll make it.  Email professors, go talk to an adviser, anything helps to get you going in the right direction.

Applying for the J-School is a challenging process, but it will be worth it in the end.  I’m looking forward to saying that I’m officially part of the J-School.  I have met many wonderful people as I’m applying this upcoming semester.

-Meredith Broadwater is a sophomore studying media arts and studies but will be applying to the journalism school in the fall. Follow her at @Meredithbroad.



A Day in the Life: PR Student

This is the final post of a three-part series detailing the daily life of a public relations professional, intern and student.


Name: Kerry Tuttle

School: Ohio University

Location: Athens, OH

Hourly Snapshot

7 AM – Wake up, eat a protein bar for breakfast and head over to Ping to work out.

8:15 AM – Finished with my workout. Go home, take a shower and get dressed for class in business casual because of meetings and presentations. Have a last minute cram session before my first class because I have a quiz in it.

9:40 AM – First class of the day. Took the quiz and had a class discussion with a bunch of future journalists about how Twitter affects breaking news.

10:45 AM – On to the next class! I have a presentation that I’ve been practicing all night.

11:40 AM – Leave class and head to Baker to grab a bite to eat with friends. While at lunch, I’m scrolling through Twitter on my phone and checking out links to various PR blogs. Then, my Co-Account Executive for ImPRessions texts me and says that our client would like to have a quick meeting with us later in the day. I add that to my planner.

12:55 PM – My next class begins. It’s all lecture so I get busy taking notes.

1:50 PM – Class is over and I run to Café Bibliotech in Alden to grab a coffee since I’m starting to hit an afternoon lull.

2:00 PM – My PACE job begins. Today, I’m interviewing various faculty members in the Scripps College of Communication and putting together a spotlight piece for the website.

4:15 PM – Leave work and head over to Scripps Hall for a meeting with my ImPRessions client, Dr. Stewart, about an upcoming event my account is working on.

5:00 PM – Grab dinner up town with a friend. Charge my phone because it’s starting to die after excessive use all day.

6:00 PM – PRSSA meeting begins. Today, we have a speaker from a brand experience firm based in Columbus. During the meeting, I’m keeping up with my Twitter feed and adding the speaker on LinkedIn.

7:00 PM – I’m working on a huge research project with a group for one of my classes so I meet them in a group study room at Alden. We need to finalize our paper outline and begin putting our research into the form of a 20 page paper.

9:00 PM – After 2 hours of solid work, my group has had enough for the night. I find a spot on the second floor of Alden and finish some homework for some classes, which include reading two chapters in a book, creating a sample press release and submitting my marketing homework online.

10:00 PM – Meet with some other PR students to study for an exam we have in one our major classes the next day. We study half of the time and use the other half as social hour, of course.

11:30 PM – Leave Alden finally and head home. Sit on the couch with my roommates and veg out by watching some trashy reality television and eating my weight in chips and salsa.

1:00 AM – Get ready for bed, set my alarm for 7 AM and go over my notecards for my exam tomorrow before it’s lights out

-Kerry Tuttle is a junior majoring in public relations with specializations in marketing and international business. Keep up with Kerry at @kerrtut.

5 Tips for Creating an Event

By: Morgan Blank

Being in Public Relations it is inevitable that we will be planning and putting on events.  The biggest trouble most people have with creating an event is how to make it unforgettable and stand out.  Here are five tips to help plan your event and keep all of your bases covered. 

1. The tip most PR superstars would give it to plan early.  Making a timeline and starting early can help fix problems you may run into later in the event planning process.   

2. Another tip that will help create a lasting impression is to pick a theme and keep it throughout the whole event, starting with the invitations all the way down to table centerpieces. 

3. No matter what kind of event, you need publicity, publicity, publicity.  The more publicity the better, you want to get you event out there, and you want the public talking about it as much as possible. 

4. Have a B plan for everything.  Someone will be late, something may not arrive at all, there is no event where everything goes exactly the way it was planned.  You never want to have to throw something together last minute because something did not pan out the way you wanted.  Try to predict what is more significant to your event and make a back up plan. 

5. Send a recap or overview out right after the event is over.  When the event is over, your job is not.  Within a day or so after the event send out a post event email.  A news letter with the best pictures from the event and a recap of the activities, talking about what a success it was, this will keep the guests chatting over what an awesome time they had. 

When creating an event you need to prepare for the worst and advertise the best.  Keep your guests wondering how you threw such a flawless party, and keep them talking about it.