“This is not goodbye, it’s see you later.”

PRSSA Fall 13' Graduates

PRSSA Fall 13′ Graduates

On Saturday December 21st, PRSSA will be saying “see you later” to two of it’s graduating Executive Board members. Jule Gamache and Zach Dugan will be leaving us to enter the real world, but before then, they wanted to offer our members a few last parting words of advice.

Jule Gamache- Our departing Disney darling

I joined PRSSA during the second half of my freshman year and it is one of the best decisions I made during my college career. I immediately became actively involved and was on the executive board by my junior year. When you’re an underclassman, you don’t get many opportunities to learn about the public relations industry; those classes don’t start until later. Being in PRSSA allowed me to see that I truly wanted to be in PR and it showed me how to excel. You’ll hear it over and over again, so much that you’ll roll your eyes, but PRSSA helped me to understand the value of networking. Having access to so many PR pros and guest speakers really helped me grasp a wide range of knowledge, and I wouldn’t trade it for anything.

With all of the lessons I learned in PRSSA, I worked my butt off and landed a post-grad internship at my dream company: Disney. Starting at the beginning of January, I will be doing marketing and public relations for the recruitment teams of all of the companies Disney owns, from the theme parks and the cruise line, to ABC and more. During the entire process my PRSSA friends became a great support system and I could not have gotten through it without them. I am looking forward to a future working at Disney and can’t wait to see where my career takes me.

My biggest piece of advice for PRSSA members: never get discouraged. When you’re looking for jobs and internships, the process can be long and brutal. You will get rejected and that’s OK. Do something to improve your chances. Find a mentor (whether it’s another student or a pro), introduce yourself to pros on LinkedIn and guest speakers at PRSSA meetings, create your own website and include it on your resume. There are so many things you can be doing to help you succeed, so never ever give up.
Zach Dugan: The PR Pro

Joining PRSSA is essential to any student’s pre-professional development. I have benefitted greatly from joining this organization, remaining actively involved since the beginning of my freshman year.

Through the years I have seen some amazing work produced by students and I have been a part of events and peer-to-peer experiences that I will remember for the rest of my life. From national conferences to regional conferences, I have been able to connect with so many PR professionals and students … some of who I still remain in contact today.

I advise every student to get very involved in this organization. During my time at PSU I held two different leadership positions, as fundraising chair and director of creative production. Both offered me a wide range of experience, which continues to make me a better-rounded communications professional.

My parting advice for PRSSA members would be to continue to push your limits. If your goals require you to learn a new program, go out of your comfort zone or pull an all-nighter … then do it. This industry requires an element of adaptability, and those who can adapt will thrive. I know every student I have worked with had a ton of potential, and those who gave it their all have gone on to have amazing careers. This is something I hope for all of you too!

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