A Reflection on PR Writing

At the beginning of this semester, looking at the long assignment list ahead of me on the Public Relations Writing Canvas page, I was filled with fear. I hadn’t had any idea how I was going to complete all of these assignments or how I was going to contact and find a client who would be willing to let me work for them for a semester. However, I quickly found that, while this class was certainly difficult and tasking, it was one of the most learning-filled college classes that I have taken.

This semester, I learned many things from PR Writing. The first of which is how to properly conduct research for your client. Students were asked to use an array of different research methods, including the Lexis-Nexis database which scans the internet and other databases for any mention of your client. This will be a very helpful tool in the future to gauge the market my client lies in and the competition they face. I can use this tool to perform SWOT analysis for future clients.

Another helpful skill that I learned in this class was how to prepare and write feature pitches and news releases for an actual client. In past classes, we learned the basics of these concepts, however in PR Writing we were forced to put these concepts to use in a real-life situation. This will help me in my career as I will not only know how to format and word a news release or feature pitch, but I will know how to find the correct reporters and media outlets to which I want to send my work.

My skills as a graphic designer have also grown this semester, and the design projects were the assignments which I enjoyed most in this class. I have had the opportunity to create an info-graphic, a logo/letterhead, a brochure, and a business card. Having to design all of these things with a coherent goal and theme in mind forced me to put more thought and time into my work. In the end, I feel more prepared to develop effective media tools such as these.

The only assignment that I did not favor in this class was that of writing a speech. The assignment itself was geared toward the assumption that my client will ever be giving an actual speech, especially with the use of a projector and PowerPoint. While I see the need to be able to effectively write a speech, I felt as though other classes have prepared us for this, and another tool might be more useful to introduce.

There are countless other things that I learned from this class, from time management, to grammar skills, to truly thinking like a PR representative. After getting a taste of the real PR world in this class, I am excited to move forward to continue learning.

Embracing Unity

As the worldwide trend toward globalization continues, new opportunities and struggles are emerging for many fields. My own time spent abroad would likely have been impossible without the ease of traveling and security that has resulted from globalization. However, interconnectivity has greatly affected the business world too, my other field of study. Although Price and other business schools have increased their education in international affairs, many business students in America still remain unaware of business culture and developments outside of the US. I believe this to be a problematic gap in their education. However, despite this trend, some faculty and students are making active efforts to educate themselves and their peers on rarely discussed topics in international business.

One of these efforts led to the creation of OU’s first annual Unity in the Global Economy conference, which took place last week at Price College of Business. Unity is an event dedicated to the celebration of cultural differences in business around the world. Various cultural organizations from the university came together to meet with American students and each give a presentation on their own small corner of the world. I had the pleasure of listening to representatives from the Chinese in Business College Association, the Angolan Student Association, the Indian Student Association, and others speak about their own countries and how business communities abroad differ from the one in the States. I learned a great deal about business in Angola, East Africa, and Turkey, areas I haven’t studied very much in the past. I also got to talk one-on-one with several of the representatives, exploring more detailed nuances of their home countries’ economies.

I am thrilled to have been involved in making the first Unity event a success, even though my role was very limited outside of attending. I hope that next year this event will be an even greater success. Learning about other countries and their peoples and cultures is an invaluable opportunity. I am fortunate to attend a university that supports its students in organizing events like this in order to foster that learning and a greater appreciation of global unity.