The question I always get when askedabout my career aspiration is, “What does someone in public relations do?” Whiledefining the job of a public relations professional is still difficult afterfour years of studying communication, it has become the fastest growing andmost vital profession in communication.
The Public Relations Society of Americadefines public relations as “a strategic communication process that buildsmutually beneficial relationships between organizations and their publics.” Tome, public relations professionals tell a brand’s story. It is theresponsibility for the PR professional to build a distinctive brand image in astrategic way that will connect with audiences, especially for clients in thefashion industry. In the fast-pacedworld of fashion, the role of the public relations professional is critical inpromoting a brand creatively to attract the press, celebrities and influencersto the brand. Originally interested in pursuinga career in fashion journalism, my academic milestone occurred while taking myfirst public relations course.
Wanting to fulfill my last core credits I registeredfor public relations writing, a course that focused on writing in the practiceof public relations while analyzing target audiences and tailoring messages tothem. While I always had an interest in this type of media relations, it wasn’tuntil taking this course I discovered my passion for public relations. The restof my undergraduate career was dedicated to learning and honing in skills towork as public relations professional. My undergraduate experiences paired withmy love for fashion have fueled my desire to pursue a career in publicrelations as a fashion publicist.
My interest in fashion began whiletaking classes at John Casablanca, a modeling and career center that offerededucational classes for people looking to improve self- image and learn aboutthe entertainment business. In addition to attending classes, we were requiredto work on weekly assignments to bring in for review during our next classsession. For one of our assignments, we were asked to go home and create aportfolio out of clippings from a magazine of women that epitomized differentstyles of fashion.
The array of magazines aesthetically lined on the shelf inthe magazine aisle. Women glossed on every cover of Vogue, Cosmopolitan, and Ellewearing the latest trends in fashion. After skimming meticulously throughcountless issues of Vogue, I realized fashion is more than just a piece ofgarment.
It is influenced by society and has the ability to capture the voiceof a movement or a generation. My love for clothes and self-expression throughfashion has inspired me to create my own personal blog– The Fashion Conscious. Withthe social media phenomena and rise of the fashion influencer in the fashionindustry, fashion blogging has given me the experience in keeping up withtrends while learning how to promote brands through my writing, proficienciesone should master when working as a fashion publicist.
My focus as an undergraduate hasalways been to attend graduate school and work as publicist for a major fashionlabel. Aware of the rigors of graduate study, I completed my degreerequirements while maintaining active membership in several on campusorganizations such as Delta Phi Epsilon, including serving as Vice President ofRecruitment, and founding member of Nova Southeastern University’s PublicRelations Student Society of America chapter. As Vice President of Recruitment,I oversaw public relations campaigns on and off campus for all chapter events. Inan effort to promote chapter recruitment, I directed and edited a 3-minuterecruitment video, which has since reached over three thousand views onYoutube. Under my leadership, I also oversaw the creation all flyers andpromotion materials for chapter events. In addition, I held an internship ascommunications coordinator for the Department of Writing and Communication atNova Southeastern University. As intern for the department, I planned andproduced public relations and social media content to help promote, the WritingCenter at NSU, its Writing Fellows program and the overarching Department ofWriting and Communication.
With the help of internship supervisor Dr. WhitneyLehmann, I maintained a social media content calendar, created content that wasfeatured across DWC’s five social media platforms, wrote news releases for theDWC website, assisted with marketing events held by the department andimplemented a social media campaign to promote the Composition, Rhetoric, andDigital Media master’s program at NSU. My work as intern has given me trainingin public relations writing as well as researching and generating creativecontent for specific audiences.
Although I don’t have much professionalexperience in public relations outside my undergraduate activities, I feel asthough these experiences have taught me how to balance and prioritizeresponsibilities while gaining valuable leadership skills, all I believe arenecessary to succeed in graduate study.In selecting the public relationsprogram at the University of Southern California, I was most interested in the specializationsthe program offers. With a strong interest in learning how to promote fashionand brand image, the ability to tailor the program and take courses in thisarea is what initially attracted me to the PR program at USC. The curriculum inthe fashion specialization will allow me to develop an expertise in thisspecialty area and will provide the strong background I desire in order toshape my future career as a fashion publicist. While I have much to learn, withmy love for fashion and desire to work as public relations professional, Ibelieve I will be a dedicated student if given the opportunity to study at USC.