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  • Writer's pictureCaroline Hynes

My Experience in PRSSA

When I first came to this major, I felt extremely behind. I knew I had made the right decision to become an advertising and public relations major, however I was at the end of my sophomore year, and I felt stressed knowing that I had two years left of my college career when I hadn’t taken a single communication related class. When I met with my new advisor to discuss my classes for the fall, she invited me to join the last couple PRSSA meetings of the year. While I didn’t know much about the organization, I could recognize that it would be helpful if I wanted to pursue a career in public relations. At the time, I didn’t truly realize just how beneficial it would be.

Public Relations Student Society of America (PRSSA) is the foremost organization for students interested in public relations and communications. Being an active member has many benefits, such as professional networking opportunities, the ability to be more active on the college campus, and real-world experience creating campaigns and planning events.

When I attended my first meeting, I didn’t know anyone. To be honest, I wasn’t even that familiar with PR and what it entails. Despite this I was offered a position on the board, and by the start of the next semester, I already felt like I knew what I was doing. In meetings I felt comfortable asking questions, volunteering ideas, and interacting with fellow members. It also helped greatly that everyone in the group was extremely kind and friendly.

Being involved in PRSSA has been a fantastic leadership opportunity. I participate regularly in school events to recruit new members and educate my college campus on what my student organization is all about. This year, I have had the pleasure of serving as the president of MSUM PRSSA, which has allowed me to take charge in working to expand our group and our presence on campus. This leadership position has instilled confidence in me when it comes to leading a team and making important decisions.

My participation in PRSSA has also given me numerous invaluable networking experiences. I have connected with many MSUM alumni, including former PRSA Chair Michelle Olson. This past September, I was one of a few students who attended the PRSA Midwest District Conference in Bloomington, MN. While there, I was able to sit in on panels led by professionals in the PR industry, and I connected with Dave Neuger of Neuger Communications, and communications experts from the Mall of America. These networking opportunities have encouraged me to feel more comfortable conversing with industry professionals.

I am extremely fortunate that I was able to find my place at MSUM through PRSSA. As a result, I have met some great people, and made wonderful friends as well as professional connections. PRSSA has expanded my public relations knowledge and overall has made me more confident about entering this field when I graduate.

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