Q. I know you advocate joining PRSSA and other on-campus PR groups, but our school doesn’t offer any such options. What do you suggest in order to gain this extra-curricular credential? -CP
A. You’re correct, I encourage every student seriously wanting to pursue a career in public relations should join PRSSA or a similar organization. If you really want to impress future employers, start a chapter of PRSSA or IABC. You can check out requirements and view some of the programs of campus chapters at PRSSA and IABC. Talk with your favorite PR professor to enlist a faculty adviser, and you can enlist a local PR pro to serve as a professional adviser.
If your campus is near a major city where there is a PRSA chapter, that chapter often will help get your chapter up and running by providing speakers and inviting your chapter leadership to meetings of the professional chapter. Being a founding member of a campus PR group shows initiative and organizational skills that will say volumes about you to prospective employers.
If on-campus PR groups aren’t as active, get involved and help build stronger organizations. Being able to cite a double-digit increase in members and programs can be impressive accomplishments to feature on your resume.