Joining PRSSA provides a wide range of benefits, from professional to social. A position on the executive board allows you the opportunity to plan the meetings, agency tours, fundraisers, etc., that your peers and fellow PRSSA members will receive these benefits from.
My position as CEO of GrandPR, GVPRSSA’s nationally-affiliated PR firm, requires a role on executive board to ensure communication between the firm and our chapter. Though our general assembly meetings take place separately from chapter meetings, we are a branch of PRSSA. The client work we produce is a reflection of our chapter. My duty is to ensure we are always growing and providing a valuable experience to future PR pros.
Loved a particular guest speaker? Wished for more discussion of an area of PR? Continuation is great. Growth is better. Apply for a leadership position for the 2013-2014 year. Take this year and make it awesome.
If you have any questions you can email Shayne at Shayne.Boonie@gmail.com or follow her on Twitter at @shayneboonie
I have been a part of GV PRSSA since my sophomore year at Grand Valley State University. Getting involved early helped me grow as a student and as a public relations professional. I was able to get to know other members who were in my classes, I was able to network with professors and professionals in the area, and I was able to obtain the position as an Account Executive at GrandPR – GVSU’s young professional public relations firm.
My position entails updating the website, maintaining our blog, updating our social media and being the media contact for our organization.
It was also my job to create and execute a plan for Campus Life Night. I had to make decisions on what types of promotional items we would give away, how students would sign up if interested, and ways to get students attending this night filled with tons of student organizations interested in GV PRSSA!
I think this position is great for anyone interested in social media. They should be able to manage their time well and be able to work with WordPress. The website is easily maintained with some practice and getting to know the site. Experience managing other social media pages is beneficial. Members utilize the sites to find out where and when meetings are, to catch up on missed events, and to see what’s coming up throughout the semester. It’s my job to keep these sites up-to-date with the most important and relevant material for members.
I would highly encourage anyone who is interested in getting more involved with GV PRSSA to do so! Not only do I have talking points for interviews, I have established great relationships with my peers, professors, and professionals because of my experiences. I am so proud to be a part of such a well-established and distinguished organization!
To contact Andrea with any questions, email her at email@example.com or follow her on Twitter @AndreaJFilter!
My sophomore year I joined PRSSA and from that first meeting I realized the passion I had for public relations. My involvement began when I was on eboard my junior year as VP of Professional Development and through my involvement with GrandPR and from there flourished into a passion for not only PR but for leading our PRSSA Chapter. Spending my senior year as the leader of a pre-professional organization like PRSSA has been one of the most challenging but rewarding experiences in my college career thus far. Being President means so much more than just a “title” to me. PRSSA has been the reason that my young career has seen incredible growth and shaping me into the professional that I strive to be. When I first applied for this position, I wanted to be able to show other people just how beneficial being a part of this organization really is. I want members to succeed and enjoy the careers that they are going to embark on, and PRSSA will enable them to do just that. If you are considering applying for President, there are a few skill sets that are vital to have
The first would be managerial skills. The President has to be able to successfully manage eboard members while also being aware of not micromanaging. Simple things such as scheduling meeting times, communicating via email and setting deadlines for specific tasks are ways what the President manages. Also being able to think on your feet and know how to handle sensitive situations without damaging the relationship between your VPs is important. You all work as a team and it’s important to maintain cohesion and a productive team environment.
A willingness to travel is also very important. Our Chapter frequently travels to both regional and national events and the President has to be willing to be at most if not all events. These events include Leadership Rally in June, National Conference in October, Region 6 Regional Conference and agency tours/trips that we frequent. These travel opportunities are once in a lifetime!
The President is the liaison between National PRSSA and the Chapter. Any events, scholarship opportunities, awards, competitions, Twitter chats and more are perks that members need to know about, it is important that members know and are encouraged to participate in National initiatives. It’s also important the President applies for all eligible awards to ensure the Chapter is recognized for achieving goals.
The President also has do understand basic budgeting. The President works alongside the VP of Member Services to create the yearly budget to ensure that the Chapter has enough funds to be successful in the year.
Being President, I have had the opportunity to network not only with professionals but other PRSSA members across the United States. I got to attend great leadership workshops and expanded my knowledge of current PR trends. My excitement for the public relations industry has doubled since my time as President. This is a great opportunity for any public relations student looking to be a leader and develop their future career.
To contact Breann with any questions, email her at firstname.lastname@example.org or follow her on Twitter @Breann_Andersen.
In 2010, I knew that I was majoring in public relations, so I joined PRSSA. What I didn’t realize at that time was that my passion for public relations and our organization would develop and expand so greatly. I decided to run for the executive board to learn more about the field, to step up as a leader and to dedicate my time to an organization I was passionate about. Serving as the Vice President of Member Services for the 2012-2013 school year was one of the best decisions I have made in my professional life.
My position combines the responsibilities of a secretary and a treasurer. Some of my primary duties include: handling all financial responsibilities, taking weekly attendance, creating the newsletter, keeping track of the point system, hauling materials to and from meetings, sending emails, and so much more. This position is a lot of behind the scenes work. It’s difficult, harder than it seems, but it is a fun position that is necessary for the success and growth of the chapter. I was continually learning over the course of my position. New things would pop up that would fall under my title, so quick thinking and a positive attitude are key.
Are you interested in Serving as the Vice President of Member Services? You should be organized, honest, and you should have time to dedicate to the chapter. Ideally, you should have reliable transportation for banks runs and to haul materials to and from each meeting. You must be passionate about PRSSA and genuinely concerned about the overall wellbeing of the chapter and its future growth.
Please contact me if you would like to learn more or talk about this position. I hope to pass my title on to an individual who cares about the chapter as much as I do. Good Luck!
When I took on the role of Vice President of Professional Development for GV PRSSA, I knew it would be a valuable learning experience, but I had no idea how beneficial it really would be.
Since last Spring I have had so many wonderful opportunities to network. Not only have I planned and lead various agency tours throughout Grand Rapids, Detroit and Chicago, but I have also attended monthly WMPRSA board meetings, luncheons and other events. I have been able to assist with registration at the WMPRSA events as well as write blog posts for their website.
Meeting and mingling with professionals has been one of my favorite aspects of the position. I have learned a lot of valuable information from the professionals I have met through WMPRSA, as well as the ones at the agency tours.
I have planned and lead agency tours throughout Grand Rapids at the ArtPrize Hub, Experience Grand Rapids, and Clark Communications. I planned trips to Detroit and Chicago as well, where we visited Blue Cross Blue Shield, The Red Wings, Quicken Loans, Ketchum, Zeno Group, Finn Partners and a variety of other agencies. Planning such tours has allowed me to improve my time management skills and has allowed me to gain valuable connections. I have enjoyed being able to provide valuable learning experiences for other PRSSA members to attend.
Not only I have I developed my networking skills, but I have also improved my leadership and communication skills. My role as Vice President of Professional Development has been a very rewarding experience and I feel lucky to have had the opportunity to be so involved in PRSSA.
To contact Ashley with any questions, email her at email@example.com or follow her on Twitter @FashAsh22!
Joining PRSSA my sophomore year really deepened my love for this industry. Not only did I further my knowledge and experience in the PR industry by attending agency tours, National Conference, and informative meetings, but I have met some of my best friends through PRSSA, as well. As I narrowed in on my career path, I became highly interested in event planning. This interest led me to apply for Vice President of Programming.
The Vice President of Programming is the spearhead for chapter meetings and chapter socials. This role involves creativity, organization, multi-tasking, and excellent communication skills. First, the VP of Programming will come up with creative, interactive chapter meetings. One of the most important parts of this position is to make meetings worthwhile and an overall great experience for members. It is nice to have fresh ideas to bring to the table that old and new members will appreciate and learn from. Next, you will be in charge of contacting professionals and planning the details of the meeting. The details of the meeting include talking points, a schedule for the day-of meeting, food and beverage options, and reserving the room and projector.
In addition to the chapter bi-weekly meetings, the VP of Programming is also in charge of chapter socials. With the help of the executive board, you will be in charge of creating fun events outside of the meetings for members to hang out and relax with each other.
Bear in mind, not everything goes according to plan, therefore it is important to always have an alternative idea of what to do if a speaker cancels or something goes wrong.
Overall, if you are interested in meeting and event planning, I strongly encourage you to apply for the VP of Programming. This position allows you to utilize creativity, organization, and communication skills in an autonomous way.
To contact Shelby with any questions, email her firstname.lastname@example.org or follow her on Twitter @smschwarzkoff.
Hello PRSSA member,
Thank you for your interest in an executive board position with GV PRSSA for the 2013–2014 academic year. The current executive board is honored to be able to pass the PRSSA traditions down to you, an eager new leader of GV PRSSA.
In this packet you will find qualifications to apply, directions on how to apply and the selection process, position descriptions, and the actual application. Please feel free to contact me, or any of the rest of the executive board members, with any questions regarding anything in this packet.
I look forward to receiving your application. Good luck.
- Must be a student at GVSU
- Must be a dues paying member of PRSSA
- Must be ready to commit 5+ hours per week
Must be able to attend a mandatory interview with the current executive board for each position applied for on. From there the current executive board will narrow down the candidates to two for each position. The final two candidates will give a short 3 minute speech at the general assembly meeting on Wednesday, March 13, 2013 and the entire Chapter will then vote for the most qualified candidates.
How to Apply:
Members must submit an application for each position they wish to apply for and their resume to Breann Andersen in electronic form by Wednesday March 6, 2013, 11:59pm. Members may apply for as many positions as they wish.
Position descriptions and the application are below
The 2013-2014 executive board will be officially announced at the March 27, 2013 general assembly meeting.
Executive Board Position Descriptions
The President is responsible for managing the executive board, overseeing the Chapter, and communicating with National PRSSA. The President should have regularly scheduled meetings with the executive board. The President must have a passion and initiative to help the Chapter and Chapter members continue to grow.
Duties may include the following:
- Overseeing the entire executive board
- Host all executive board meetings
- Serve as the liaison between GV PRSSA and National PRSSA
- Host bi-weekly general assembly meetings
- Update and maintain Chapter mentor program
- Maintain Alumni Relations
CEO of GrandPR
The Chief Executive Officer is responsible for managing all the firm’s operations and serves on the Chapter’s executive board to maintain communication between the firm and the Chapter. The CEO should have regularly scheduled meetings with staff and weekly meetings with officers. The CEO must have a passion and initiative to help the Chapter and Chapter members continue to grow.
*The CEO of GrandPR has additional qualifications; please contact the current CEO for details.
Duties may include the following:
- Selects staff with the help of the VP of Operations
- Maintain on-going contact with the firm, faculty and professional advisers
- Review/approve writing pieces and proposals from Account Executive’s
- Conduct leadership and general assembly meetings
- Oversee and approve client recruitment.
- Meet with clients to discuss objectives
- Signing contracts with clients
- Evaluate and motivate firm members and hold them accountable
- Establish communication between the firm and the rest of the PRSSA Chapter
- Maintain contact with clients and account executives to ensure satisfactory progress
- Offer commitment and professionalism to the firm and its activities
- Makes sure the firm meets national standards
Vice President of Public Relations
The Vice President of Public Relations is responsible for establishing and maintaining positive relationships and overall positive image among the campus and community. The Vice President of Public Relations must have a passion and initiative to help the Chapter and Chapter members continue to grow.
Duties may include the following:
- Create and execute a plan for Campus Life Night
- Update the GV PRSSA website on a regular basis
- Create all press materials for the Chapter
- Social media
- Weekly Blog posts: ask members to write guest blogs, write blog posts about Agency Tours, Fundraisers, other events, etc.
- Maintain an online presence through Twitter
- Maintain an online presence through Facebook
- Maintain an online presence through YouTube
- Update the PRSSA bulletin board in Lake Superior Hall
Vice President of Member Services
The Vice President of Member Services is the keeper of all the paperwork. The Vice President of Member Services is responsible for keeping the members informed on all events as well as keeping track of Chapter funds. The Vice President of Member Services must have a passion and initiative to help the Chapter and Chapter members continue to grow.
Duties may include the following:
- Secretarial duties
- Send weekly e-mails to members
- Record the meeting minutes
- Write the monthly newsletter
- Take attendance at meetings
- Keeper of all the GV PRSSA paperwork
- Frequently check the mailbox in Lake Superior Hall
- Financial responsibilities
- Collect member dues & all other income
- Submit student Senate funding requests & attend the hearings
- Work with the President to compile an annual budget
- Will have name on the bank account with President
Vice President of Professional Development
The Vice President of Professional Development is responsible for maintaining a relationship with WMPRSA and other PR or related professionals in the area. It is the Vice President of Professional Development’s job to connect GV PRSSA members with educational and networking opportunities. The Vice President of Professional Development must have a passion and initiative to help the Chapter and Chapter members continue to grow.
Duties may include the following:
- Serve as the liaison between GVSU PRSSA and WMPRSA
- Attend the WMPRSA monthly board meetings
- Attain 2 PRSSA volunteers to work registration tables at WMPRSA luncheons
- Local professional development opportunities
- Plan agency tours
Vice President of Chapter Development
The Vice President of Chapter Development is responsible for membership recruitment, leading fundraising efforts, and providing philanthropy opportunities. The Vice President of Chapter Development must have a passion and initiative to help the Chapter and Chapter members continue to grow.
Duties may include the following:
- Plan & implement fundraisers
- Recruit sponsorship funding
- Member recruitment
- E-mail professors at the beginning of each semester
- Plan classroom visits
- Create fliers & pluggers to hand out on campus
- Create a plan for chalking & writing on whiteboards
- Advertising on GVSU campus
- Charity work opportunities
Vice President of Programming
The Vice President of Programming is responsible for planning and executing general assembly meetings and Chapter socials. The Vice President of Programming must have a passion and initiative to help the Chapter and Chapter members continue to grow.
Duties may include the following:
- Plan chapter socials
- Plan bi-weekly general assembly meetings
- Work with Vice President of Public Relations to promote the Chapter throughout the semester
Executive Board Application 2013 – 2014
Expected Grad date:
Position Applying for:
(If applying for more than 1 position, please submit a separate application for each)
Why do you want to be a part of the executive board?
*Please submit an electronic copy of this form along with an electronic copy of your resume to Breann Andersen by March 6, 2013, 11:59 pm.
L.C. Williams and Associates
To kick off the Chicago agency tours we went to L.C. Williams & Associates. The first thing we noticed upon arrival was the amazing view of Lake Michigan and Millennium Park. After all of us took and Instagramed our pictures we were welcomed by GV alumna Stacey Nardozzi, who currently interns for LCWA. We were then introduced to Tim Young, Director of Client Services, who was very excited to have us. He had prepared a presentation for us that talked about who LCWA is and advice for young professionals breaking into the PR world.
LCWA is a full-service PR firm and research agency. LCWA is one of the top 50 independent PR firms in the country and one of the top six firms in Chicago. They are also in the top 3 agencies that specialize in home products. Some of LCWA’s clients include: Tiffany & Co., eBay, Shedd Aquarium, and Water Tower Place. LCWA is a midsize firm with a staff of about 30.
I thought the presentation that they had put together was very helpful and really showed how great LCWA is. They also made sure that the presentation was very conversational, they wanted us to ask question and were eager to give their input. My favorite part was when they talked about some of their favorite case studies. I found the case study they did for Steve Kaplan and his involvement with the reality television show Secret Millionaire was really interesting. It seemed like a fun and rewarding case to be involved with. Attempting to get his own show, whenever you see Steve Kaplan in the media you can guarantee that LCWA was behind it.
By: Jessica Eckler
The second agency we visited was Finn Partners. Finn Partners is a Ruder Finn Group Company. Their managing partners have more than 175 years of combined experience working in the technology, consumer goods, travel/economic development, global affairs, arts, and corporate affairs sectors. Some of their clients include: Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan, Stub Hub, Sony, North Face, and Whole Foods.
Finn Partners was a wonderful agency to visit, not only did we learn about the company and the clients they serve, but we were also able to learn more about how to create a successful resume. The resume tips include: explain what you have done and why, quantify when possible, unless you have five or more years of experience keep the resume to one page.
Chicago is my favorite city and somewhere I have always envisioned myself living and working. After visiting all of these agencies I am even more confident that I want to end up there one day.
By: Ashley Curd
The Windy City was a phrase that I underestimated until I got off the train in Chicago. This was my first time in the city since I was in the sixth grade and I had no idea what I had been missing. Every agency GV PRSSA traveled to was unique in the size of the agency and services that they offered.
The Zeno Group, a division of Edelman Company was one of my favorite agencies to tour. This agency was named PRWeek’s best midsized agency of the year in 2011, 2012 and is a finalist for 2013. Zeno has five offices in the U.S. and 14 offices worldwide. What I liked most about the office was the youthful environment. Zeno strives to be the voice of the people at the heart of pop culture. They have clients raging from Craftsman to Pizza Hut and are leading the way with the company’s communications plans. The employee’s of Zeno really made GVPRSSA feel right at home in Chicago.
This trip was a really good opportunity to see how different public relations can be working for a larger firm. It also was a learning experience on how to live in a big city. After going on this trip it has inspired me to look for jobs in larger cities even if it might be a culture shock at first, it will be something that you will love in the long run.
By: Anna Hammonds
The 2,400 colleagues across 100+ office in 70 countries make Ketchum one of the largest and most geographically diverse PR agencies in the world. With a brand promise to ‘break through’ and boundless creativity a strong credo, this renowned agency has a lot to offer its clients through one of five global practices and 25+ specialty areas to boot. Representing 13 of the world’s top 20 brands for more than a decade, Ketchum is a strong name among global PR.
One of the more interesting projects the Ketchum Chicago team worked on was a Sharpie campaign with One Direction. Participants were competing to win tickets for themselves plus ten friends to the One Direction concert in New York with VIP treatment, including a plane ride there. With help from most of the Chicago office, along with others from the Ketchum New York office, the campaign was a success landing Sharpie with a total of 130 million impressions.
We were offered some great advice about preparing for life after graduation, how to prep for interviews and what ‘a day in the life’ of a Ketchum employee is like (even though any PR professional knows no two days are ever the same). The trip to Chicago with tours of four major agencies was an incredibly beneficial experience. I highly recommend going if even slightly interested in working in Chicago after graduation.
By: Morgan Fedewa￼
The business world can seem like one of unwritten rules and unspoken expectations. How is someone just entering the workforce to know how to conduct him or her self? The November 7th PRSSA meeting centered on the topic of business etiquette. Guest speaker Nicole Rodammer, a GVSU alumni and former member of GV PRSSA, shared tips for students looking to enter the professional world. Rodammer, currently the director of business development at Kraft Business Systems, Inc. and Health Care Management, has experience in many fields of public relations. By working in sports, nonprofit, and corporate PR Rodammer has amassed a broad understanding of business etiquette. Here are some of the tips she shared:
- Set your own standard. If you want to be treated like a professional make sure that you walk, talk, dress, and act like one. Define yourself clearly so that others will not do it for you.
- Distinguish between work and play. You are your own brand, so be careful about going out with coworkers or others in the industry. Grand Rapids is a city with small networks- don’t let your actions on Saturday night ruin your brand on Monday morning!
- Have realistic expectations. Know that salary is dependent on the industry, specific position, and length of employment. On applications, give a salary range that you would be comfortable accepting. If the position does not offer the growth opportunity or salary that you desire, do not be afraid to shift your focus and try something new.
- Be vocal about your value. If you are seeking a raise, make sure to communicate the value you bring to the organization. At the same time show commitment to your place of employment by telling the plans you have for its future.
The workplace can be a confusing place for young professionals to navigate. Thank you to Nicole Rodammer for helping us understand business etiquette!
*Rodammer is also the president of the Grand Rapids Young Professionals. Visit gryp.org for more information about the group- it is free to join!
Written By: Audra Hartges
On November 2, Grand Valley PRSSA members travelled to Detroit to visit Blue Cross Blue Shield, Detroit Red Wings, Compuware, Quicken Loans, and Skidmore Studio. Each tour provided a completely different experience for chapter members. Andrew Hetzel, Vice President of Corporate Communications at BCBS, began the tours by showing members the view of the Detroit skyline from the Blue Cross rooftop. He walked the green roof and described his workplace as “the most sustainable building downtown.” After describing the dimensions of the communication department at Blue Cross, Andrew introduced Katie Bores, Director of Marketing and Advertising at BCBS. Katie advised members to begin their career at an agency. She explained, “My agency experience provided the perfect launch pad for my career.” Bores said, “Take something and run with it at 150 percent. Don’t reserve yourself–if you have a question, ask it!” Andrew ended the tour by explaining how he got to where he is today. “My only interview was for my first job. Relationships and networking is how to advance in this field.”
It was impossible to disregard the young team’s passion for sports PR at the Detroit Red Wings. The majority of the team had already completed graduate degrees and the newest professional completed his last year of undergrad in just 15 weeks. Kevin said, “All I’ve ever wanted was to work. I finished up my degree by cramming 32 credits at three different colleges into one semester.” Their drive helped them gain many life experiences early in their careers. Alexa Hinds, Community Relations Coordinator at the Wings, advised the group, “If you aren’t passionate about sports PR then you need to move on because it’s a very competitive field.” Later Alexa stated, “Always send a professional a followup email. Use the word ‘opportunity,’ it will make them feel like you genuinely valued meeting them. Continue to keep in contact and make sure they never forget you because you never know how they can help you.”
These short experiences represent just a portion of the wonderful tours during the Detroit visit. Thank you to all of our hosts and special thanks to Andrew Hetzel for setting up each tour.
Written By: Melissa Baker