The Public Relations Student Society of America is a national organization dedicated to college students interested in the public relations and communications fields. The organization serves as an outlet for professional and academic growth, networking, and career opportunities. The parent organization, Public Relations Society of America, gives recent graduates the chance to transition into a professional network of communication professionals. The chapter here at West Chester University currently has a total of 85 members, which is a dramatic increase from last year’s membership total of 25. The chapter members are mainly comprised of, but not limited to, communication studies, business, and marketing majors.
On March 31, the PRSSA chapter took a trip to Philadelphia to visit two Public Relations firms, Braithwaite Communications and Tierney Communications. Trip attendees received tours of the agencies, a presentation of agency operations and the opportunity to gain firsthand observation within the field. The chapter trips are consistently successful and serve as an amazing way for students to network with professionals and decide upon their interests within the professional world. The organization typically takes a chapter trip once a semester and the organization’s past trips have included Baltimore, Md. and New York City.
In addition to the trips, PRSSA holds semi-annual Speed Networking events where students have the opportunity to speak one-on-one with professionals who exchange advice on resumes, internship information, and their knowledge of the field. The most recent Speed Networking event took place on March 24. Professionals from Piqued PR, Confetti & Co., Target, QVC, Synapse Solutions and Philadelphia Soul attended, which helped to make the event a success. This event has been known to provide internships and in some cases, jobs, to our members. Also, PRSSA holds workshops dedicated to resume improvement and interview skills with the addition of panel discussions events to allow students to attend a Q&A forum with professionals within the field.
In the past two years, PRSSA has grown significantly in membership, success of events, and overall campus involvement. In May, three executive board members will be graduating. Ely Cruz, Social Media Chair, Callie Smith, Vice President and Angelique Caraballo, President, have built this organization from the ground up and have shaped it into the success it is today. West Chester student, Angelique Caraballo, says of the organization, “PRSSA has allowed me to grow my professional network by giving me the opportunity to contact and mingle with professionals in my desired field.” Dr. Lordan serves as the advisor of PRSSA and he is an amazing resource for all things communications. This on-campus organization is a truly great way for students to prepare themselves for success in the professional world.
Next semester, the organization plans on continuing expansion and growth. PRSSA is also looking to help other organizations on-campus with PR and Marketing. Please contact WestChesterPRSSA@gmail.com if you need help spreading the word about an event or overall organization awareness. Also, please follow PRSSA on Twitter at @PRSSAWCU and “Like” us on Facebook!
Lauren Grow is a fourth-year student majoring in communications studies with a minor in political science. She can be reached at LG781107@wcupa.edu.