We are pleased to announce the details of the 2014 Student Development Conference

The Student Development Workshop is an annual, day-long conference that is planned and implemented by members of the EMU PRSSA. We aim to help students in and around southeastern Michigan prepare for careers in public relations, journalism, marketing and other communications fields.

Attendants will gain knowledge from professionals in their field of study when hearing from our guest speakers, and through networking. The day will conclude with a resume-building workshop where you’ll receive feedback and tips on how to improve. This year’s Keynote speaker is Luke Capizzo, senior account executive at Identity PR.

Please join us on Friday, December 5, in the EMU Student Center from 8:00 a.m. until 4:00 p.m.

For more information and to register for the conference, please visit our eventbrite page.

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So you declared a PR major?

So you’ve just declared your major as public relations. Now what?

Well, you should come to a PRSSA meeting! I know, I know, I just gave you the cliché answer, but it’s true.

I came to Eastern and started my college career as a declared PR major. At Fajita Fest, during my first year orientation I came up to the PRSSA table and excitedly told everyone at the table about myself and how excited I was to join and how I had been reading the blog throughout my senior year of high school. It’s true, I did. What can I say? I was excited!

So all that happened and then guess what happened next? I didn’t come to a meeting until February of my first year.  What ended up being my biggest regret of my first year? Not coming to PRSSA until the year was practically done.

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So what am I saying here? I’m saying that you have nothing to lose. If you are interested in public relations, or studying public relations or a related communication or marketing field, come on down to PRSSA! We promise there is something to learn.

Being in PRSSA has given me an opportunity to learn beyond the classroom, apply the skills that I learn in class, and meet and network with people who share the same passion for the field as I do. I mean really, what’s better than a bunch of people who love public relations? Nothing.

Maybe you think the meetings sound intimidating. I promise they aren’t. Our Tuesday night meetings are educational, yes, but they are also always fun. You get to learn something, meet people, and advance your PR career. It’s a worthwhile use of time.

If you are interested in becoming a member, please do not hesitate to contact our e-board members or attend one of our Tuesday night meetings. Even if you aren’t a member, please consider joining us! You are always welcome.

Andrea Mellendorf
Chief Financial Officer
EMU PRSSA

Public relations courses prefix is now PURL instead of JRNL

Winter 2015 registration is coming up. If you are looking for your public relations course, you may not find them if your not looking them up under the new prefix PURL. Moving forward public relation courses will now have PURL before the course number and not JRNL. Journalism courses in the PR program will still be under the JRNL prefix.

If you have any questions regarding the change please contact Lolita or Gina.
PURL prefix change flyer

How to create word tag clouds using Wordle

"EMU PRSSA Tag Cloud" C/O of Gaberielle Burgess-Smith

“EMU PRSSA Tag Cloud” C/O of Gabrielle Burgess-Smith

I am sure you have seen these around. For the longest I did not know what to refer to them as, but after the constant rephrasing of my Google searches from “PR word backgrounds” to “word tag pictures” I finally found the correct terminology to describe this trending picturesque item on many social sites, word tag clouds.

Word tag clouds are tags that appear most frequent within a search context or even website/blog source. It combines these words into an image or rectangle like cluster that resembles a Scrabble game board. A word that has a lot of buzz or a lot of tags has a larger font size in the tag clouds. A word with not as much buzz has a smaller font size.

I have seen many social sites post a word tag cloud as their Twitter header or Facebook cover. Me being the type of  person I am, I wanted one specific to me.  Of course there was not an existing word cloud that had words that described me as an individual, so I made one.

There is a site called Wordle where you can make your own cloud words. I created one with my own list of words I inserted, but you can enter a website url and create a tag cloud based on the tags of the website. After I created my word cloud I went to Photoshop to give the letters a pink cheetah print skin. They have a color palette you can choose from to give your text color, but pink cheetah print is not an option so I used Photoshop.

C/O of Gabrielle Burgess-Smith

C/O of Gabrielle Burgess-Smith

I then wanted to see a word cloud for our PRSSA website. It looks pretty cool.As I developed a generic word cloud based on PRSSA site I discovered pros and cons to Wordle. If you are on a Mac computer it is very easy to save your Wordle because you are able to save it as a PDF via the print feature. On Windows there is not a save as via print. This makes it close to impossible to save your Wordle unless you use a third-party software program. Why does everything have to be so difficult!? However, I did a print screen and emailed it to myself. I downloaded the image as a pic and cropped it on an online pic editor to take out the extra remnants that showed the outline of my browser. For future reference, if you decide to make one you should do it on a Mac.

Here is a four minute video that explains how to change the text skin of your Wordle words.

Gabrielle Burgess-Smith
Vice President
EMU PRSSA

Join EMU PRSSA for the Rock Financial tour on Friday, Oct. 24, 2014.

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Carpool leaves at 11:45 a.m. from Starbucks in the SC. Students who want to attend should contact our VP, Gabrielle, by Monday, Oct. 20, 2014.  It’s important that you RSVP, so that your name will be added to the security list for entrance into the building. Rock Financial Tours are known for being great.

Visiting Compuware:
-Enter Parking deck from the Farmer Street Entrance (buses will drop off at Farmer Street doors)
-Enter Office Tower on Ground Level off of Farmer Street
-Proceed to Compuware security desk to register/receive a visitor’s badge
-Check in with our Client Ambassadors on the tenth floor, to receive parking validation and  further direction

Detroit Zoological Society winter PR internship

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Want to mingle with the macaronis and pal with the polar bears while learning valuable PR and communications skills? Then the Detroit Zoological Society (DZS) has the internship for you!

The DZS is seeking college student interns for the winter semester who are in their junior or senior year and studying Public Relations, Communications, Journalism or related fields. Interns will be responsible for researching and drafting press releases, talking points, newsletter profiles, Facebook status updates and other PR-related copy; proofing and editing copy; scheduling and coordinating media interviews; escorting media through the Detroit Zoo during video/photo shoots; assisting with commercial and motion picture film shoots and special events; updating website and mobile app content; and performing other PR-related assignments.

Interns will work closely with the Communications Director, Communications Manager and other interns while learning valuable skills needed in the Public Relations workforce. Excellent writing and public speaking skills are a plus.

The duration of the internship is early January through early May; 16 hours (two days) per week. This is a non-paid internship, and it is mandatory that students receive course credit.

The Detroit Zoological Society is an equal opportunity employer committed to diversity in our workforce. We maintain a drug-free workplace and perform pre-employment substance abuse screening.

Potential candidates can apply online and send their resume to Communications Director Patricia Janeway at pjaneway@dzs.org with a cc. to PR1@dzs.org. Please put “Winter PR Internship” in the subject line.  The deadline is November 15, 2014.

The importance of telling a story through writing

The kick-off speaker this semester, Nick Synko from Synko & Associates LLC, gave many words of wisdom that were relevant to not only public relations students, but to anyone that is seeking excellence in their career field. He also gave motivational stories and shared helpful hints that would be useful to any scholar looking to transition smoothly into the work force. However, one tidbit of information seemed to resonate as I sat and listened to his lecture.

The kick-off speaker this semester, Nick Synko from Synko & Associates LLC, gave many words of wisdom that were relevant to not only public relations students, but to anyone that is seeking excellence in their career field. He also gave motivational stories and shared helpful hints that would be useful to any scholar looking to transition smoothly into the work force. However, one tidbit of information seemed to resonate as I sat and listened to his lecture.

“You’ve got to be able to find good stories,” Synko said.

This is incredibly true for all public relations practitioners. The skill of being able to find a way to tell the story of a company, organization, brand or individual is absolutely imperative. This can give the public an in-depth look at what is relevant about your client. However, there isn’t just a need for proper grammar, format and style.

Writing is a skill that is essential for any PR practitioner, and developing a sense of what will cause a lasting impact in the minds of readers takes practice.

But, how do you know if your angle will be relevant for your target audience?

There was a phrase one of my professors liked to commonly repeat to her students as they told her ideas regarding classroom writings. “So what? Who cares?” she would insistently ask. This is always a good place to start when concocting a press release, email pitch or feature story. Why would anyone care about this story? Why is this important to the audience that is supposed to be reached?

Source: publicrelationsblogger.com

Source: publicrelationsblogger.com

A good story will always be able to easily answer these questions, and the writer should have an inclination as to what will be well-received by their target audience. Research and an awareness of the clients’ market will greatly assist with these aspects of providing a solid piece of writing.

Public relations students should start honing their craft of using their writing to reach people. There are many opportunities for Eagles to practice this skillset, and any portfolio should be equipped with bylines and published works. Blogging for PRSSA, writing for the Eastern Echo or any other platform that allows for a story to be shared should be heavily considered by any student looking to excel in the world of public relations.

Good writing is not something people are born with. Having the ability to skillfully put words on paper takes practice, and there is always room for improvement.

Having an empathetic outlook is underrated in the world of PR. Being able to know what would catch the attention of the public is not always an easy task, but it’s a necessary skill for this career. Also, if a PR student is still writing at the novice level upon graduation, they are simply not ready for a job in this career field.

Synko emphasized the need to find good tales that need to be told. Would you be ready to complete the task of finding a feature story about the company if your boss asked you to? Take the time to prepare yourself in college, because there’s no better time to learn and make mistakes than right now.

This is incredibly true for all public relations practitioners. The skill of being able to find a way to tell the story of a company, organization, brand or individual is absolutely imperative. This can give the public an in-depth look at what is relevant about your client. However, there isn’t just a need for proper grammar, format and style.

Writing is a skill that is essential for any PR practitioner, and developing a sense of what will cause a lasting impact in the minds of readers takes practice.

A good story will always be able to easily answer these questions, and the writer should have an inclination as to what will be well-received by their target audience. Research and an awareness of the clients’ market will greatly assist with these aspects of providing a solid piece of writing.

Public relations students should start honing their craft of using their writing to reach people. There are many opportunities for Eagles to practice this skill set, and any portfolio should be equipped with bylines and published works. Blogging for PRSSA, writing for the Eastern Echo or any other platform that allows for a story to be shared should be heavily considered by any student looking to excel in the world of public relations.

Good writing is not something people are born with. Having the ability to skillfully put words on paper takes practice, and there is always room for improvement.

Having an empathetic outlook is underrated in the world of PR. Being able to know what would catch the attention of the public is not always an easy task, but it’s a necessary skill for this career. Also, if a PR student is still writing at the novice level upon graduation, they are simply not ready for a job in this career field.

Synko emphasized the need to find good tales that need to be told. Would you be ready to complete the task of finding a feature story about the company if your boss asked you to? Take the time to prepare yourself in college, because there’s no better time to learn and make mistakes than right now.

Ken Bowen
President
EMU PRSSA