FORUM FALL 2018 Vol. 51, Issue 1 www.prssa.prsa.org/forum Thoughts from the President’s Desk: How to Make Your Fall Semester Count By Andrew Young National President The question most students ask me is, “What can I do to really stand out when I look for a job?” With so many people fighting for the same openings, it’s important that you stand out as much as possible from the other candidates. You’ve already made the best first step by being a member of PRSSA so congratulations on checking that one off your list. The next thing I would recommend is to get some relevant certifications that will benefit you in the workplace. First get your Certificate in Principles of Public Relations through PRSA. Then consider certifications through Hootsuite, Google Analytics and Google AdWords, which will teach you ways to measure the work that you’ll be doing and showcasing your value. Building your network is one of the most beneficial things you can do as a student. I know countless people who have gotten jobs because of someone they knew. As public relations practitioners we’re tasked with building relationships, so why shouldn’t we do it for ourselves? As a PRSSA member, the first place you should look is within your own Chapter. Then, make sure you utilize your PRSA sponsor Chapter and attend as many events as you can. Most PRSA Chapters host luncheons or mixers and invite students, these are great places to connect with professionals in your area. I met the person who hired me at my current company during a PRSA young pros mixer that I just happened to attend. My favorite networking event is the PRSSA National Conference. This is a great time to meet other members from across the country. Conference is where I met my best friends and learned more about the industry that I love. Finally, visit every company you think you might want to work at or think you could learn something from. You’d be surprised how much you can learn from spending a day at a company and watching someone work. It’s also a great way to build your network and meet someone new. I think you’ll find that most people want to help you in any way that they can. So don’t be afraid to send an email to someone you found on LinkedIn or never met before. Take a leap of faith and you might be surprised how much it pays off. OPEN FORUM 2 Discovering the Art of PR By Elissa Butler University of Texas at Austin As the semester kicks off, the PRSSA National Conference is the top event on every member’s mind. This five-day gathering of members from every corner of the country—and even from other parts of the globe—is a fantastic way to grow as a student as well as a future public relations practitioner. Set in the scenic and buzzing city of Austin, Texas, this year’s National Conference offers a wide variety of activities as well as fun-filled networking opportunities that only a national event can provide. In a city filled with a rich backstory and array of cultures, this Texas city always delivers on its reputation for individualism while also providing a beautiful portrait of citizens in sync. In many ways, the Conference does the same thing. Each year, we get the opportunity to come together to share in our growth, ideas and experiences in a truly impactful way. This year’s Conference will emphasize all of the innovative ways our industry is changing while simultaneously honoring its roots. The Conference kicks off with a busy day of Career Tours and Resume Critiques for those that have pre- registered for these exclusive opportunities. Cue the “Far Out in Austin” opening night social. Come together with your Chapter to see old friends, make new ones and boogie down Austin-style with lava lamps, snacks and tie-dye galore. You may even have the opportunity to win some prizes. Read about how brands utilized the World Cup to their advantage and what public relation impacts the sporting event has. 4 The Conference will also feature a multitude of professional development breakout sessions where attendees will get the chance to hear from experienced professionals on the rising trends and practices in the public relation industry. In addition to this collection of opportunities throughout Conference, there will also be a Career Exhibition where students will have the chance to speak with recruiters from agencies and universities about their future. Be sure to bring a copies of your resume and business cards because you may have the chance to snag the position of your dreams. Unfortunately, the sun eventually sets in the big ole Texas sky. The Conference will come to a close with, “The Capital Gala” Awards Ceremony and Dinner to celebrate the achievements of student leaders in the Society. The Conference Committee looks forward to welcoming you to our beautiful city from Oct. 5–9. Visit the PRSSA Conference website for more information, and be sure to follow us on Twitter and Facebook @PRSSANC to stay up-to-date with the latest news! With National Conference right around the corner, check out the top ten things to do in this year’s host city Austin, Texas. Register now! Registration Deadline: September 7th 6 To help kick off your school year, learn how, why and when you should network with your professors and teaching assistants.