As a college student majoring in public relations, preparing yourself for full time employment in the public relations field can be intimidating, confusing and sometimes downright difficult! As a recent college graduate I know how scary it really is by wondering if you’re doing the right things to adequately prepare yourself for your first foray into the exciting field of public relations.
First, a little about me. My name is Michaela Sabin and I was raised in Des Moines, Iowa and went to college at Iowa State University. Go Cyclones! I graduated from the Greenlee School of Journalism in May 2011 with a Bachelor’s degree in Journalism and Mass Communication with an emphasis in Public Relations. Throughout my many adventures at Iowa State there was always one thing lurking in the back of my mind and that was graduation and finding my ideal public relations position. Since that was my goal, I had to find the things that worked for me in this regard, realize what things didn’t work for me, and along the way stumble across things I wish I would have done and of course run into those things I now wish I didn’t waste my time on. My transition from higher education to a public relations career is a happy one. I am now an Account Assistant here at Freestyle PR. I couldn’t be more ecstatic about starting my career with such a great public relations company! The purpose of this blog entry is to offer some advice to college students that are struggling with the age old question, “So how do I best prepare for my grown up job in public relations?”
The first thing I like to share with public relations students is to make sure you build your writing skills as much as possible. Writing is one of the most important skills a public relations practitioner has in their arsenal. From writing press releases to pitches and even email communication, all of them require a solid writing foundation. A few ways to help you build this critical skill is to work for your student paper, take an extra writing class or two that fits into your schedule or offer to write for any organizations you are involved in for free. I also recommend you read as many public relations documents that you can get your hands on. Do a Google search for anything ‘public relations’ and there is a wealth of good examples to peruse. As straightforward as it sounds, often times simply reading the different types of public relations documents you will be asked to create will really enhance your baseline understanding of the writing mechanics that go into each type of document you may encounter in your daily work life.
These tips can help you frame quality writing skills that will assist you in your road to becoming a valued professional in the public relations field.
I sincerely hope you find this helpful and please feel free to contact me with any questions you might have. I am very excited about my current position and love the opportunity to talk to others about it and about Freestyle PR! Be on the lookout for my next blog.