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58 PUBLIC RELATIONS A Star in the Making Channels Nita Shah is a young Asian businesswomen – she is the founder and director of PR consultancy, Shahrp. She was first exposed to the PR world during her university years, when she secured sponsorship for the Windsor Fellowship – a Management Training Programme for ethnic minority students. As part of the two year scheme, Nita’s sponsor, the Halifax, arranged a work placement in its press office. PR related– extra curricular activities followed this and on completing her studies, she started work in the industry. From agency life in the City, to a role in–house, she set up Shahrp in 2004 and won the first client project four days later. An example of Nita’s success is her recent selection by PRWeek magazine as a rising star of the PR industry. The publication’s first ‘29 under 29’ list recognises outstanding achievement and details the top UK PR professionals under the age of 29. An additional accomplishment was being the only Asian to have earned a place on the list. Nita Shah, commented, “This is a fantastic accolade and I am absolutely thrilled. The PR profession has predominantly been a white, middle–class one, however that is changing and as one of the few Indian women working in PR, I am pleased to be a part of that.” A panel of industry experts judged entries from PR professionals who are punching above their weight in terms of results for their clients, embracing new communications channels and taking on extra industry responsibilities. Daniel Rogers, editor of PRWeek commented, “To be one of the 29 chosen from the vast number of young PROs that work in–house and within consultancies across both the public and private sectors is a real achievement and Nita should be very proud.” Nita entered the PR industry after an Economics & Management degree, followed by a postgraduate course in Journalism & PR. She also made the most of holidays to gain relevant work experience with PR agencies and in–house departments. The public relations industry is broad and one can work in a particular sector, e.g. financial, healthcare, technology, pharmaceutical, etc. Whilst it is not impossible to change sector, most people tend to stay within what they know, as time and resource has been invested in building up knowledge and contacts. Upon completing her academic studies, Nita joined a leading financial/corporate Embracing new engage ISSUE TWO 2006