I came…and Conquered

In the beginning of the semester, I wrote about what PR means to me. I gave my own definition as well as using definitions that have been given by scholars and organizations.

Today I plan to do a reflection on that first post. On that day, I decided what PR means to me and hears what I said, “In my own words PR is defined as ‘career made up of trends. A person with a career in PR is constantly keeping up with whats going on in daily news, on top of every event or story, has to be knowledgeable in many different topics for the purpose of working with a multitude of clients, having to always research and study up on different topics. To me, public relations is more than just a career, it’s a lifestyle.'”

I would say that my personal definition of public relations remains the same as the one that I gave above. My experience throughout the semester has only encouraged my initial definition. During the past year I have been exposed to many aspects of PR in many different ways. Having speakers in class has been very helpful to get insight of what PR is like in the real world for a recent post graduate student. It is awesome to see the success of people who were just in your position a few years ago and find out how they did it. This is one of my favorite things in class and another reason why I love being in PRSSA so much!

Looking back on the semester of CAP 220, I realize how much I have learned in such a short amount of time. My campaign assignment was the biggest assignment I have done so far in my education. In my opinion, it was very beneficial to be given a sort of “boot camp” training throughout the semester to get us ready for the last assignment. Although the project was time consuming, required a ton of critical thinking, and was pretty difficult….now that I am done with it, I honestly really enjoyed doing all of the parts to it. This makes me feel great about my future and the career path that I have chosen for myself.

Public Relations is a fast pace, chaotic, and adventurous industry. With that being said, I cannot wait to begin my career in PR! I was lucky to have a great professor who really makes clear how much she cares about the success of her students. I am a terrible test taker and that is one of the reasons I excel in classes that are application based. I am able to learn so much better and faster. That is what CAP 220 was, and I am so thankful for that.

I believe that I absolutely have a better grasp on what PR is. It is so fulfilling to hear professionals talking and being able to relate to them and completely understand what they are talking about. On the first day of class I was worried about the tasks I was going to be given. I have conquered and I could not be more proud of myself.





Last but Not Least


Looking back on this semester, I can say I have learned more than I ever thought possible. And…when I say I’ve learned, I mean like I have really learned, applied, and taught a shitload of things. Mostly thanks to great professors, but also I can credit myself for hustling and staying motivated.

One of the GREATEST things I can say I learned this year is the RACE process. When I was first learning about it, I probably wouldn’t have known this. After being in the Grand Valley PRSSA club and having speakers talk to us, and going to conferences, you wouldn’t believe how many times I have referred to the RACE process in my head or heard others using it.

To describe RACE in my own words, it is a process used during the stages of a Public Relations Campaign. A simple explanation of the process is given in the article, RACE formula defines good PR:

The best public relations is research-based. Step one, if you hope to influence public opinion, is establishing a starting point: You research the existing opinions and attitudes of your target audience. In step two, you analyse that information, using it to prepare a communications plan. You then execute your plan (step three) and, in a fourth step, review your efforts and monitor your impact. In the PR business, that process is captured in a formula called RACE: Research, Analyse, Communicate and Evaluate. Remember that acronym and it will bring discipline to all of your public communications (Hoggan, p. 1. 2007).

 The process can be looked at as a sort of rough outline to go off of to make sure all of the important points are fulfilled.

R – Research

A – Action (plan)

C – Communication

E – Evaluation

Today, I would like to focus on the E, evaluation. According to John Marston, a PR blogger, the evaluation step can be defined as,”the final phase, it is all about asking, was the audience reached and what was the effect. It reviews how the public perceives the organisaiton by looking over the first three stages. After all the checks have been made the process can be started again targeting another issue” (Marston, para. 4. 2013). Most people may not realize, but once a campaign is out there and done…it is not actually done. This is one of the most important parts of the process because it is a learning opportunity for the future.





Hoggan, J. (2007, May 19). RACE formula defines good PR. The Vancouver Sun Retrieved from http://search.proquest.com.ezproxy.gvsu.edu/docview/242103489?accountid=39473

Sophieanderson2013, P. B. (2013, April 14). The four-step PR concept created by John Marston – RACE. Retrieved April 12, 2017, from https://introtopronetothree.wordpress.com/2013/04/14/the-four-step-pr-concept-created-by-john-marston-race/

Is Social Media Running the World?

The Role of Social Media in Public Relations

Though the days of press releases, press conferences, and print aren’t completely retired, they may be close. Over the years, technology has made a huge break though and with that came many new media channels that have, for the most part, forced industries to get on top of modern media and keep up with all of the things. Social media is one of the biggest modern media channels, if not the biggest, and PR pros should definitely be using this to their advantage. I plan to talk about a few different aspects of social media being used in Public Relations.

I’d first like to talk about the crisis communication in PR and the impact that social media has on these situations. Public Relations is pretty much a necessity for all brands, especially in today’s society where customers are constantly putting complaints out there for the world to see on social media. In order to keep your brand from getting bad rep that will eventually stick, PR pros should always be available and on top of these complaints for the brand in order to improve costumer service and prevent future complaints by using social media as a form of analytics and constructive criticism.

In my opinion, there are many pros and cons to social media in the PR world. Mostly pros, but there are some things that will just never be unseen and the potential danger these things could put a company in, could be pretty threatening. If a mistake is made through a social media site it is out there forever and no matter how fast it is deleted, millions of people have already seen it, screenshot it, and shared it. It is then only a matter of minutes before this mistake goes viral. This is where it is crucial to have a PR team on hand to do immediate damage control. There is also a benefit of social media within this, any sort of mistake that is made or crisis that has broken out social media allows for an immediate response from the company instead of having to reach out to reporters to give a public apology and wait for it to be televised. This immediate response is crucial because the company is able to let consumers know that the problem is already being investigated, researched, and fixed.

Now I’d like to talk about the implement of social media in PR and how it is benefitting both sides. It is clear that social media is reshaping the practice of PR (Allagui and Breslow. 2016, p. 1). According to DiStaso and McCorkindale, “The importance of social media to the field of public relations cannot be underscored, and is essential for the operations of many organizations” (DiStaso and McCorkindale 2012, p. 76). Social media has proven to be quick, convenient, and accessible from anywhere. Social media has also proven to be more than just “social” media. It is a source for breaking news, entertainment, as well as information.

An article titled, Social Media used by PR Practitioners stated that, “a previous study by Fitch (2009a; 2009b) found that PR practitioners in Malaysia and Singapore were hesitant to use new media because it meant a loss of human connection.” After conducting a study based off the results of this previous one, it was found that 84.6% of PR pros were actively using social media to communicate directly to their consumers and 72.7% agreed that social media communication resulted in an increase in brand awareness and popularity, as well as an increase in sales (Gabriel and Koh, 2016, p. 475).

Lastly, it is important to understand that social media is a very valuable tactic in PR and constantly offers huge opportunities. According to Tom Malcom, from an article titled: The impact of social media on public relations, “The key is to have a strategy: think carefully about the resources you have and how you can keep control of any conversations you begin. If you treat social media as a key part of your PR and wider business strategy you can achieve real business results” (Writer, 2012. Para. 1). It is essential that PR pros know how to create personality and story behind a brand and by doing this, it is likely that success will be found in increasing brand awareness and audience engagement though social media.






Suzic, B., Karlícek, M., & Stríteský, V. (2016). Adoption of social media for public relations by museums. Central European Business Review, 5(2), 5-16. Retrieved on March 28, 2017, from http://search.proquest.com.ezproxy.gvsu.edu/docview/1834365254?accountid=39473

Allagui, I., & Breslow, H. (2016). Social media for public relations: Lessons from four effective cases. Public Relations Review, 42(1), 20-30. doi:10.1016/j.pubrev.2015.12.001

Gabriel, S. P., & Koh, C. (2016). SOCIAL MEDIA USE BY PUBLIC RELATIONS PRACTITIONERS IN MALAYSIA: AN EXPLORATORY STUDY. The Journal of Developing Areas, 50(5), 469-477. Retrieved on March 27, 2017, from http://search.proquest.com.ezproxy.gvsu.edu/docview/1792534971?accountid=39473

Writer , S. (2012, March 21). The impact of social media on public relations. Retrieved March 28, 2017, from http://www.thedrum.com/news/2012/03/21/impact-social-media-public-relations

7 Ways to Find Success in PR

Happy #PRWednesday! I’ve decided to conduct research in finding tips, tricks, and all of the secrets to be successful in PR. I realize I am sort of young to be sharing this advice, but it’s never too early to get prepared for the real world. In my short two years of college, I have been given so many tricks to help me prepare for finding success after college, so today I am going to share with you what I have learned so far and what YOU can do to start finding success NOW. I have also reached out to some future PR pros and asked them to share the best advice they can give with what they have learned so far in the PR world. Get ready to rock the real world, PRbae’s.

  1. Show off Your Personality

After reading an article titled, “Making it Personal, The Key To Success in PR” I was able to find some insightful information from PR pro, Sarah Pinch, the Bristol-based President of the Chartered Institute of Public Relations. She states that:

“Social media does work. You need personality; some of the great brands get that. Those brands that get it right, the ones that recognize this is personal. I remember my first day of work experience on Radio Devon, the presenter saying to me, ‘I’m not talking to lots of people, I’m talking to one’. It’s a bit like that. Twitter is really valuable. It’s like having customer service radio station on your desk. You can get real insights into what people are interested in or concerned about. At its heart it’s still about connecting with people and representing your organization.”

2. Don’t be Afraid to Ask or to do

“Always be asking your employer if there is anything else you can do and never be afraid to just do something on your own without asking and then show off your ideas, this gives you the chance to display your value and the skills you have learned” – Bri Olson, content creator at Well Design Studio

  1. Know your Audience, Give Them what they are Used to

In another article titled, “The Sweet Smell of PR Success” Susan McCoy, owner of the Garden Media Group, a seven-person PR shop, talks about an experience she had while putting together an elite event in New York City. “Everything has to feed into what your target market expects and how they perceive you, your image has to match in everything you do.” She goes on to say,

“If the elite are to be enticed, it takes more than a swank location; it takes persistence. Even the day before the party, we sent out notes that said, ‘Looking forward to seeing you tomorrow,’ even to people who hadn’t said they were coming, these are very busy people, and you always have competing interests. You want to make sure that at the end of the day you are at least in the top three of things they want to get done.”

  1. Focus on Details

Dave Fleet, a blogger and Senior Vice President of Digital in Edelman‘s Toronto office, states that focusing on details is one of his top tips for a successful PR career. “Nothing hurts the credibility of a pitch, a proposal or a program like sloppy mistakes. Meanwhile, people who become known for outrageous attention to detail become go-to people in a team. Be that person. Read and re-read your work. Be your own devil’s advocate in order to think things through and make sure you’ve covered all of the angles. Double-check your calculations. Question your assumptions.”

  1. Be Useful and Productive, Show off Your Skills

“So far, I have had two internships and while neither of them were technically PR job titles, I still practiced PR. That is the first thing I’ve learned about job hunting, a job might be posted as an advertising or marketing position – but you should not be turned away from those. Always read the job descriptions because half of the time the tasks are totally PR. That’s the problem with this major… PR, advertising, and marketing are so close knit, they make-up the integrated marketing communications love triangle. Because of this it is often hard to find the defining line between them. At Well Design Studio, where I currently work, we specialize in communications and design but my PR skills have been utilized multiple times for things like: strategic campaigning, market research, and working media angles for clients.” – Bri Olson

  1. Get Involved

Join a professional/student club (This is crucial because you will not only learn more about the industry, but you will have a new group of allies in your network who you can turn to for help with questions on your work, help finding an internship/job, and help you just when you need advice…like right now). Also, always go to those networking events that you might dread. (These are important because you never know who is going to be there, could be your new best friend, could be your new boss). – Julia Backus, PR intern for Grand Rapids Griffins AHL.

  1. Hustle

-Do ALL of the internships. Do them in different industries. Figure out what you like, then polish your skills. (This will get you the “big girl” job). p.s. I have done internships in sports, education, and digital. Each one taught me new and different things that will help me once I am a professional.

– You NEED to keep up with your network. This includes your network on LinkedIn, your network in clubs, your network of co-workers, and your network of past co-workers/employers; this shows that you genuinely care not only about your advancement, but how others are doing. Also new opportunities arise all the time, what does it hurt to say hello every once in a while?  – Julia Backus


Lastly, a few small tips from me:

Do everything you can to get involved; go to events, send thank you notes to EVERY PR pro you meet, ask to job shadow, be yourself, be talkative, be friendly, and last, but definitely not least, find out what makes YOU unique and carry that trait with you, EVERYWHERE you go. Good luck out there kids, you’re gonna do great.

Until next time.untitled-1


By any other name: The sweet smell of PR success. (2005). PR News, 61(28), 1.Retrieved March 22,2017 from http://search.proquest.com.ezproxy.gvsu.edu/docview/204224894?accountid=39473

Fleet, D. (2013, April 17). 15 top tips for a successful PR career. Retrieved March 21,2017, from http://davefleet.com/blog/2013/04/15/15-top-tips-successful-pr-career/

MAKING IT PERSONAL – THE KEY TO SUCCESS IN PR. (2015, Aug 19). The Post Retrieved March 21,2017 from http://search.proquest.com.ezproxy.gvsu.edu/docview/1704921004?accountid=39473

The Hack Attack that gave PR experts a Heart Attack


In November of 2014, Sony Picture Studios were victims of a cyber attack by a hacker group who called themselves “Guardians of Peace” over Seth Rogan and Evan Goldberg’s film, The Interview, a film presenting the comical satire of the CIA assassinating North Korean President, Kim Jong-un. This cyber attack included the hacking of computer systems at Sony, leakage of pre-released movies, employee’s personal information, and emails from Amy Pascal and Scott Rudin.

In December of 2014, the GOP demanded that Sony cancel the release of The Interview and posed threats of terrorist attacks at any cinemas that showed the film. Following this, U.S. cinema chains made the decision to pull the screening of the film and because of that, Sony decided to cancel the formal premiere of the movie.

These cyber attacks cost Sony a whopping 15 million dollars and before you begin to sympathize with the company, let’s realize that this is less than half of what they earned on the movie, The Interview. At the end of all of this, reporters announced that Amy Pascal would step down as co-chairman of Sony Pictures entertainment. Which was definitely the right move considering how this situation has been analyzed by a PR standpoint. I will be using THINK public relations text in order to create a break down and analysis of the crisis management tactics used by Sony Pictures during this crisis.

(Disclaimer: In my own opinion, Sony did NOT know how to properly handle this crisis)

            Proper Conflict Management tactics are made up of the “Life Cycle” which can be defined as phases that include: the proactive phase, the strategic phase, the reactive phase, and the recovery phase. I plan to delve into each of these stages to represent what NOT to do and what should have been done, using real-world examples from the 2014 Sony hack.

The Proactive Phase

During the proactive phase is when all of the preparation is being done. Companies should have PR and crisis communication experts on hand at all times to prepare for any unexpected crises like the one talked about above. In this situation, Sony was the absolute opposite of prepared, which is a surprise considering they have been involved in many crises in the past. According to Ira Kalb, “Sony Pictures executives have acted like deer paralyzed by the headlights of an oncoming vehicle.” He then goes on to say, “They have ducked out of meetings, avoided media spotlight, and looked scared in every situation where media has caught them” (Kalb, 2014. Para. 2). To get to the point, Sony pretty much disregarded this stage all together which is clearly a foreshadow for how the rest of this is going to go.

 The Strategic Phase

This is the second step in the crisis management plan. Sony did in fact complete the “risk communication” stage of this phase by canceling the premiere of the film in all theaters, but they did it in an improper way. By canceling the release of The Interview in the middle of this media storm, the flames of fear were just being fed. Take it from Rob Lowe who stated, “Sony canceling The Interview is like when Europe gave in to Hitler” according to an article on business insider. Addressing the conflict positioning stage of this phase, Sony backtracked because instead of taking steps to keep their business from being damaged and stand up to admit to what they did, they continuously begged the media to stop publishing leaked files and documents. This only encouraged the media to look for more information that hadn’t been revealed. Another example of this was during the Golden Globe Awards when Amy Pascal made it a point to request that hosts, Amy Pohler and Tina Fey lay off of the hack and warned them about making jokes. Fey and Pohler made jokes anyways and because of this, the CAA asked its own clients to not attend the hosts after party (A break down and analysis of 2014 Sony Hack, 2014.). Later in this phase a specific crisis management plan should be developed. In the case of Sony, they developed some sort of plan to apologize but did it completely wrong according to the opinion of Ira Kalb. Which brings us to the next phase-


The Reactive Phase

This is the third phase in the cycle, one that begins with crisis communication, which includes meeting the needs of the publics, AKA apologies. Kalb states that apologies are a necessary first step in proper crisis management protocols, but that the priority of apologies should be: 1) The viewing public, 2) employees, and then 3) the president and Hollywood talent. He backs up his reasoning for this by continuing with, “The President and A-list stars will likely get over the disparaging remarks since they are public figures subjected to similar, or even worse comments everyday” (Kalb, 2014. Para. 3). Whereas here, Sony apologized to President Obama for insensitive emails, Angelina Jolie for rude emails, and didn’t prioritize an apology to the public for causing chaos and fear to citizens due to threats of a terrorist attack. I would call this the, say-nothing approach.

The Recovery Phase

Last but not least, we have made it to the final stage in the conflict management cycle. This is where the organization employs strategies to repair their reputation. Sony did not really have to worry about this stage or their reputation because even after all of this, people still paid to see the film, the cost of damage from this crisis was less than half of their earnings on this single movie, and they are a big enough corporation that a crisis like this wont do much to hurt their image. Take it from Pascal herself who says, “Believe me, this will not be our last mistake” (Zetchik, 2014. Para. 18). Well it sure was not their first mistake and I do not doubt Pascal’s words, it probably is not their last, crises like this happen all the time to huge corporations.





A Breakdown and Analysis of the December, 2014 Sony Hack. (n.d.). Retrieved February 15, 2017, from https://www.riskbasedsecurity.com/2014/12/a-breakdown-and-analysis-of-the-december-2014-sony-hack/

Kalb, I. (2014, December 18). Sony Pictures: How Not to Handle a Crisis. Retrieved February 15, 2017, from http://www.huffingtonpost.com/ira-kalb/sony-pictures-how-not-to-_b_6351620.html

Robb, D. (2014, December 24). Sony Hack: A Timeline. Retrieved February 15, 2017, from http://deadline.com/2014/12/sony-hack-timeline-any-pascal-the-interview-north-korea-1201325501/

Zeitchik, S. (2014, Dec 18). ANALYSIS; SONY HACKING CONTROVERSY; bold approach has led to greatness and gaffes. Los Angeles Times Retrieved from http://search.proquest.com.ezproxy.gvsu.edu/docview/1637378445?accountid=39473

We Think We Know

Research in Public Relations-why do we need it and why is it important?

A common problem many of us have….we think we know. In the real world if your information is not backed up by data, facts, and research, your credibility goes right down the drain. Research is an important part in any industry and “thinking” that you know something, is just not enough.

In public relations, research is crucial. There are many benefits of doing research within PR and it’s a basic need if you want to achieve success for your clients. But before I get into all of  the specifics, lets talk about research in general and all of the different types used in PR.

Research is a process in which we preform a methodical study in order to achieve the answer to a previously thought out research question and hypothesis. According to The Dictionary of Public Relations, research in PR can be defined as,

The systematic effort before (formative research) or during and/or after (summative or evaluative research) a communication activity aimed at discovering and collecting the facts or opinions pertaining to an identified issue, need, or question; may be formal or informal (Draper-Watts et al. , 2013. p. 26).

While beginning research, we must come up with a goal for our research-what we want to get out of it. Things under this umbrella could include: identifying your audience, developing objectives, and analyzing data. We should then decide what type of research would work best to achieve your goal and/or answer your research question. The main types of research are primary, secondary, qualitative, and quantitative. So what are they and what are the differences between the two?

  • Quantitative research is the objective, systematic, and controlled gathering of data. It is objective in that the researcher carefully defines the “things” under studies in order to specifically provide what exactly is being studied.
  • Qualitative research is less controlled and subjective and relies more on the subjective evaluations of the researcher. Although both serve good purposes, generally, quantitative research seems to have more benefits because of its consistency, whereas qualitative lacks the control and objectivity (Stacks, 2016) 
  • Primary researchis original research conducted by you (or someone you hire) to collect data specifically for your current objective.
  • Secondary researchinvolves searching for existing data that was originally collected by someone else. (Primary vs. Secondary, 2011).

In the public relations industry it is important to use research for many reasons. Doing research limits the amount of a company or firms biased opinions for their client, it also enables us to get to know our target audience on a better level as well as allowing us to get feedback. According to the book titled, Advertising and Public Relations Research,

Research is a critical competitive tool in modern business: using research can help the researcher learn what the public wants while uncovering pathways that may have not been previously considered. Competent research helps prevent mistakes and unnecessary expenditures, and improves efficiency (Jugenheimer et al. 2014).

As I previously mentioned, research is crucial in public relations. Research is the strategic foundation of modern public relations management (Bowen et al. n.d.). Public relations uses research to identify issues, manage crisis, improve credibility, and allow/assist practitioners to maintain long-term relationships with clients.

So yes, there is in fact a need for research within PR and it is important to realize and acknowledge the value of research when beginning a career in public relations, it’s never enough to just think we know.



Bowen , S., Rawlins, B., & T. (n.d.). Mastering Public Relations, v. 1.0. Retrieved February 01, 2017, from http://catalog.flatworldknowledge.com/bookhub/reader/5573?e=bowen_1.0-ch08_s01
Stacks , D. (2016, November). Primer of Public Relations Research, Third Edition. Retrieved January 31, 2017, from https://books.google.com/books?hl=en&lr=&id=cWfSDAAAQBAJ&oi=fnd&pg=PP1&dq=types%2Bof%2Bresearch%2Bin%2Bpublic%2Brelations&ots=1PRS6NKipb&sig=sJkpSJbyORRmtuhJAF8NPaagX_o#v=onepage&q=types%20of%20research%20in%20public%20relations&f=false
 Stacks , D., & Bowen, S. (2013). Dictionary of Public Relations. Retrieved January 31, 2017, from http://www.instituteforpr.org/wp-content/uploads/Dictionary-of-Public-Relations-Measurement-and-Research-3rd-Edition.pdf
 Jugenheimer, D., Kelley, L., Hudson, J., & Bradley, S. (2014). Advertising and Public Relations Research. Retrieved January 31, 2017, from https://books.google.com/books?id=-7mtO0V-rzgC&printsec=frontcover#v=onepage&q=secondary%20research&f=false

So, What does PR really mean?

I’d like to first start with a quick shoutout to anyone reading this from GVSU, Happy #PRwednesday y’all. If you are reading this but not from GVSU, WELCOME!

So, for those who don’t know, ‘PR’ itself stands for ‘public relations’ and I’m sure many people have heard of public relations as a career, but not many people really understand the true meaning and job description of someone in the PR industry.

Recently in the first assignment for my class, I was instructed to give my own definition of PR. In my own words PR is defined as “a career made up of trends. A person with a career in PR is constantly keeping up with whats going on in daily news, on top of every event or story, has to be knowledgeable in many different topics for the purpose of working with a multitude of clients, having to always research and study up on different topics. To me, public relations is more than just a career, it’s a lifestyle.”  The reason I felt like this was a good definition is because in my opinion a career in PR really is a lifestyle. You are vowing to be dedicated to the internet, promising to always be available, and making guarantees to clients that you will get their business on the right track.

Before coming to college and beginning to take classes for my major, I really did not know what public relations entailed. I knew that in certain cases, for instance a celebrity or blogger, PR meant the people sending out products to these bloggers for review in order to get more people hearing about a brand. But that is only such a small part of what PR really is. In my opinion, public relations is a very unique career unlike any other. There are so many aspects and roles to take on in this industry it is hard to ever get bored, one of the special things about PR is the way you build relationships in order to enhance, advance, and benefit the reputations of your many clients’ brands.

After doing some research, I found a few other definitions of public relations from professionals in the field that I want to share with you.  First, PRSA, the public relations society of America, put together a crowdsourcing campaign with intentions to modernize the definition of PR, through public vote, they came up with this: Public relations is a strategic communication process that builds mutually beneficial relationships between organizations and their publics” (PRSA, 2012). I really like and appreciate this definition because it is so modern and easy to understand which benefits me for when people ask me what PR actually is.

I found a great article titled, “Public Relations as Relationship Management“Although the article is from 2000, I wanted to include it because I enjoyed reading their description/definition of Public Relations, it is so relatable for someone studying or working in the PR industry. Ledingham and Bruning state:

Public Relations is a field more often characterized by what it does than what it is. Ask a practitioner to define the field and they’ll likely respond with a list of activities that are included under the rubric of public relations: publicity, press agentry, advertising, event management, media relations, and so on (Ledingham & Bruning, 2000).

This description is so true when it comes to Public Relations. Like I said in the beginning, PR is more than just a career, it’s a lifestyle. There are so many different roles to take on within a career in PR and that’s why I loved this articles description!

One last definition that I want to include is one from an article titled, Public Relations: Made Simple. In the article Jefkins states, “Very plainly, PR is about communicating in order to achieve understanding through knowledge” (Jefkins, 2016).  He goes on to list some of the things PR is capable of and why it is different and much more complex than HR. I liked this description as well because of the simplicity of it. Not to mention, you can use this easy definition next time someone asks you about your career path and you tell them it’s PR, this definition might not help them to understand at all, but it’s a hell of a lot easier and less annoying than listing off all of the things under a PR job description. 🙂

Until next time,




Jefkins, F. W. (2016). Public relations made simple. London: Heinemann.

Ledingham, J. A., & Bruning, S. D. (2000). Public relations as relationship management: A relational approach to the study and practice of public relations. Mahwah, N.J: L. Erlbaum.\

PR, the Career I Can’t Explain. (2016, August 11). Retrieved January 18, 2017, from http://webershandwickseattle.com/2012/06/pr-the-career-i-cant-explain/

Yann, A. (n.d.). About Public Relations. Retrieved January 18, 2017, from https://www.prsa.org/aboutprsa/publicrelationsdefined/#.WH_VJccfTD1

CAP 105 Scavenger Hunt

Well, time has flown by, as it usually does, CAP 105 has come to an end. And, of course, with the end of a semester comes a final. Luckily, CAP 105 was a fun one and hardly qualifies as an “exam”. With this being said, I am sad to leave this class but thankful for everything Adrienne has done to make this class what it was, Thank You!!

  1. Team Name & Logo


We thought this name was the perfect fit considering a great amount of the project tasks are things to do with the great Grand Valley!

2. Let the fun begin-Group photos!


GVSU Marching Band

This one I like a lot, because it is much different than the other ones, while GV does have many iconic places/statues, I feel like this one is something very unique to us. This piece is definitely iconic because its huge, easy to see, and everyone knows about it. To me, personally, this is a great piece of art because it is made completely from scraps.



Transformational Link 

I think this is one of my favorite iconic structures on campus because of how legendary it is.There are so many different “rules” about this structure about not graduating if you walk through or failing exams if  you walk through it. Although I feel like these things aren’t true, I’ve made it a point to never walk through it….just in case!


Grand Valley Clock Tower 

This one is a classic. Most Universities, if not all have clock towers. Still an icon at GV though, especially when taking pictures with the sunset reflecting off of the library in the background


Bird Sculpture 

To be honest, I have no idea the real name of this sculpture I tried to find it on the sculpture but I think it might have been hidden. Anyways, I like this one because I remember spending all my long walks home to freshman land observing it to see all of the different shapes I could make out of it.

3. Internet Memes


The power of Vader


Putting my cheerleading skills to work 


on my way to catch the golden snitch

4. Video Tour

5. My favorite sculpture


Freshman land Rock

Now, I’m not sure if others would consider this a sculpture, but to me it is. I love this rock and i love that it is the perfect shape and right in the middle of an open area! The reason I consider this a sculpture is because even though it isn’t a traditional “sculpture” it always has the opportunity to be something new each day. It is art and it is always changing and students all around campus are able to make their mark on it to show people their own art. I think its cool that there is something given to us for the purpose of being decorated by students. Plus, no matter how many times I see it, its still fun to look at because it is always something different!

6. Internet Research

Images found on GVSU foundation page, for more information click here

The infographics above represent the amount of money given to the Grand Valley State University Foundation by private donors. Through analyzing these results, I found that although admission, acceptance, and enrollment rates have increased over the years, the amount of private donations has not been anywhere near consistent. In 2016 GVSU had a record number for enrollment but the donor foundation was decreased by about 3 million. The infographic representing the overall fund growth shows more consistency than the last graph in increase rate throughout the years.

7. Favorite Meme


find it here 

This one was a fun one. I love internet memes! There are so many that make me laugh but right now, I think my favorite has to be the “Hooded Kermit” This one is hilarious to me because it is beyond accurate with my roommates and I. It reminds me of like the little devil on your shoulder.

Brand Yourself Before and After

So, in the beginning of the year,when brand yourself was first introduced to me, my report card was a B. I didn’t understand how to filter the search results in order to help my overall grade before and I only filtered 5 positive which is why I think I was given a B. Today when I went back to do it,  I got a better understanding for the website and began looking through more search results and found MANY that were positive to my brand, the only problem is, I refreshed it to see my overall grade before filtering and finding all of these positive attributes to add….so it kept me at a B because since I don’t pay for premium I couldn’t refresh my report card:(  I certainly 100% believe that I would have been given an A after sorting through more search results.

I definitely see some ways I can improve my online presence to help out my Brand Yourself Report Card. Some of these ways include:

  • Being more involved in clubs, community events, and activities will help my online presence because nowadays things like these are usually written about in a newsletter or a recap about the ‘events’ and being able to filter these things to come up on a google search of my name will make me look better 😉
  • By using my social media accounts in a more professional way, when people come across them they will be impressed instead of taken back or disappointed which can improve my personal brand.
  • By keeping up with the Brand Yourself website, I will be able to always check up on what my google searches are looking like to make sure other people only see what I want them to see.
  • I can also improve my personal brand by consistently using my social media and keeping content valuable, relevant, and recent.
  • Last but not least, using my social media and LinkedIn, I can connect with professionals in my field and by doing this, hopefully it will improve my online credibility.

So overall, I think for now, my personal brand is pretty good but there is always room for improvement. Hopefully next time I am able to refresh my report card, I will be rewarded with an A instead of a B. 🙂

screen-shot-2016-12-06-at-9-09-21-pmScreen Shot 2016-09-01 at 4.17.33 PM

My Social Media Story

Take a look at the world around us. Social media truly is taking over and whether you want it to or not, there is absolutely no controlling it. Ask any single teenager or young adult where they get their news from and I can guarantee you they will not say the local tv station, because really, who even pays for cable at this point. 9/10 times people are streaming tv/Netflix/live videos because no one has the time to tune into the local news or even anything on cable. I am never in the right place at the right time to catch the new tv show I was hoping to start and this is exactly why I own a hulu account, new episodes of many different shows are available less than 24 hours after the original airing! This seriously still blows my mind, but wow I’m thankful for it. At this point in my life, if someone were to take the Internet away from me, I would no longer exist.

I can still remember how it all started, when I first began using social media I was in 5th grade and the outlet of choice was aol’s instant messenger, also known as “AIM.” Everyday after school my friends and I would all hop on to the computer (desktop computer) and have conversations throughout the entire night, as if we hadn’t just spent the whole day at school together. As the years went by many more social media sites took me captive. At the moment I have and use over 7 social media sites. Who knows how many of my accounts for other sites are still out there.

You know, its funny. I constantly bash my sister for allowing social media to run her life and consume all that she cares about, but really, I do the same thing in a different way. My sister is 14 years old and all those kids care about is the amount of likes they get on instagram, I swear. My sister actually hacked into my instagram and is accessible to my account for the sole purpose of giving her friends an extra follower and making sure to always like her own pictures through my account. Its almost disturbing the amount kids care what other people think of them, I like to think that it is just a phase and hope they’ll grow out of it, but its hard to examin what exactly goes through the heads of the generation below me. I’m really not sure how they will react the first time someone rejects them. Kids nowadays have a hard time accepting the word no.

Anyways, back to my story. Social media has impacted me like nothing else ever will in the world. I have always had access to anything I could ever want or need right at my fingertips. The world before google was probably a dark place, but thankfully I’ll never have to know what that is like. From education to entertainment social media has my back through it all.

Although I feel confident in the way I manage my social media accounts, there is one thing I feel I have a disadvantage to. If I would have known the tips to become Internet famous or go viral back then, I could be getting paid to visit tropical islands, try on clothes and take selfies, or make videos about my life, but instead I hopped on the bandwagon way too late so here I am broke as hell, freezing my ass off, sitting at the counter of my college apartment in west Michigan. I keep trying to think of ways to make people notice me because social media is one of today’s biggest job industries, but with the small amount of followers I have behind me it seems there is no hope left. Right now there are so many teens and young adults who are sponsored by companies that the level of difficulty to reach this sponsorship is ridiculous and almost unrealistic. In order to even be noticed or considered by any company you would need to have thousands of new followers flowing in on the daily. While I wish this were a great story of how social media changed my life and helped me become rich and famous, it’s not. With that being said, I still keep holding my hope and maybe one day, I’ll have a new story to tell.