PRSSA chapter attends national conference

Left to right: PRSSA Secretary Grace Milauskas, PRSSA Chapter President Hannah Shouse and PRSSA Vice President Clare McMurry.
Left to right: PRSSA Secretary Grace Milauskas, PRSSA Chapter President Hannah Shouse and PRSSA Vice President Clare McMurry.

Three members of Radford University’s Public Relations Student Society of America (PRSSA) attended the national Public Relations Society of America (PRSA) and PRSSA conference in Boston from Oct. 6-10.

At the conference, the students and the faculty advisor attended sessions that boosted their professional development and earned them valuable networking time with public relations professionals. The trip was partially sponsored by the Student Organization Assistance and Resources office.

Radford’s PRSSA chapter President Hannah Shouse, of Radford, attended the conference with PRSSA Vice President Clare McMurry, of Williamsburg; PRSSA Secretary Grace Milauskas, of Blacksburg; and faculty advisor and instructor Kathleen Degnon.

“I was given a lot of tools that I’m going to be able to use,” Shouse said. “I went to a chapter leader session, which really helped as I can pass those skills on to the next chapter president. We also went to a nonprofit workshop so we can learn how to better help nonprofits in our community service efforts.”

A crisis communication session was also offered, which gave attendees an inside look at crisis communications. A session on political communication was a highlight for the Radford contingent, during which current political discourse and trends in communication were discussed and examined.  

“There are so many different things one can do in public relations,” Shouse said. “The wide-variety of sessions offered at this conference speaks to the diverse career opportunities in this field.”

Ben Butler, client services director at Top Hat, spoke at the chapter leader session, which Shouse considered to be the most beneficial for Radford’s PRSSA chapter.

Shouse said that the session included best practices for PRSSA social media accounts and best ways to promote the activities and involvement of the chapter. Additional chapter development sessions were held throughout the week.

“It’s really helpful to learn from what others have done, especially being able to learn about what best practices for us are,” Shouse said. “It was a great experience.”

At the PRSA conference, Morgan Spurlock, widely known for the documentary “Super-Size Me,” spoke on what drove him to his personal successes in the entertainment industry.

“He told us to never give up, even if people don’t believe in you,” Shouse said. “He was really helpful. Being able to go to that was really helpful, because even when I graduate in May, I’ll still be able to attend events such as this. I can still be involved with PRSA.”

Radford University’s PRSSA chapter is a student-run organization that aims to further the educational and professional development opportunities for students in the field of communication. The chapter helps individuals enhance their education, broaden their network and launch their career.

Radford’s PRSSA chapter will be attending the regional PRSSA conference in North Carolina in the spring.

Oct 25, 2017
Max Esterhuizen