On March 23, members of DSU’s Mass Communications program woke up very early, braved the cold, got into a van, and then, rather uneventfully, and wordlessly, were driven to Temple University for the Public Relations Student Society of America (PRSSA) Mid-Atlantic Regional Conference.
After arriving to the conference, the students signed in and ate a complimentary breakfast. The conference kicked off with Temple’s Senior Associate Dean explaining a bit about Philly culture, then introduced the mayor of the city, who commented on how important PRSSA is to Philadelphia. Afterwards, students were sent off to panels.
Students attended various sessions about a wide range of topics covering:
- Agency/Client Relations
- Fake News & Ethics
- Special Events
- Professional Development
- Corporate Social Responsibility
- Engaging Influencer Campaigns
- The Convergence of Advertising and Public Relations
Breaking up the sessions was a lunch in which a video dedicated to the adviser for Temple’s PRSSA was played and a keynote presentation was given titled PR in the Age of the #MeToo Movement.
Professional Development Panel
The Professional Development Panel consisted of Ryan Wall, recent graduate and Assistant Account Executive for Brian Communications, and Linda Burkley, President of Ardis Communications. Ryan Wall discussed how he vets potential employees while Linda Burkley offered advice into how to get a job.
The Diversity Panel consisted of:
- Michael Kaye, Communications Manager, Autism Speaks
- Tiffany Tavarez, Vice President of Community Relations, Wells Fargo
- Richelle Payne, Partner, Ascendant Group
The panel discussed their various backgrounds and how they handled being a minority and working in the PR field, as well as ways to better the environment for minorities. They offered insight into what situations arose for them and how to handle those situations as well as how diversity helps to improve the PR field.
Speakers were very open, allowing students to ask questions and network with them long after their respective sessions ended. After the conclusion of all sessions, a networking session was scheduled for an hour and a half, allowing students to network with businesses and organizations that came in to speak with public relations students.
PRSSA and DSU Student Organizations
PRSSA is one of many great student organizations in the Mass Communications Department. Here is a list of all the student organizations in the department. If you are interested in learning more about PRSSA, here is a link to PRSSA’s website.
Photos provided by William Careri, Multidisciplinary Storyteller at Temple University