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Fall 2015 Review

Who we are
We are the James S. Measell Chapter of PRSSA
(Public Relations Student Society of America),
created in 1983 on the campus of Wayne State

Our mission
Our mission is to provide guidance, motivation
and opportunity to upcoming public relations
professionals in the city of Detroit.

What we do
We create programming and opportunities so
students can keep pace with the ever-changing
industry of PR. Our workshops compliment
our classroom studies, our tours give us insight
into potential careers, our shared events with
PRprofessionals help us build networks and our
executive board positions teach us leadership skills.
@wsuprssa and

Letter from the president ................................. 3 PRSSA gives the gift of reading ........................ 11
Amanda Knaebel Christiana Lumaj
Fall accomplishments ........................................ 4 Five ways to enhance your tour ........................ 12
Meet the board ................................................... 4 - 5 Rebecca Cooper
PRSSA National Conference ............................ 6 -10 PRSA gets “Smart” about media relations ....... 13
Speaking up and standing out ...................... 6 Shay Franchini
Kyle Taylor WSU and PRSSA heads to the races ................ 14
The Breakfast Club ......................................... 7 Freya Thodesen-Kasparian
Amanda Knaebel Busting bias at Diversity Summit ..................... 15
Finding the perfect fit in PR ....................... 8 Rebecca Cooper
Gretchen Maurer Internships: Living what you learn .................. 15
Presenting at Nationals ................................ 9 Katie Pusz
PR program recognized nationally ............ 10 Allen Lewis Agency shares tips ........................ 16
Amanda Knaebel Darius Jackson
The $65 cookie ................................................... 11 Letter from the editors ....................................... 19
Madison Lewis and Aya Elsherif The Salute Team

Letter from the President
Dear Reader,

If we have not met yet, my name is Amanda and I am lucky enough to serve as
your Wayne State PRSSA Chapter President this year. At this time last year I was
just starting to learn the PRSSA world as a new member. As I reflect on this past
fall, I am astounded by the progress I have made toward a career in PR. With so
many brand new members this year, I hope that my reflections helps each of you
realize how far you can take yourself and what this Chapter can do for you along
that journey.

For new members who are reading this, or those who are considering becoming
a member, my advice to you – jump right in. PR is better learned first hand. If
you give your time to this PRSSA chapter, it will help you build your skills, your
network and a career. It has done so for me. I joined the executive board in an
attempt to give back to an organization that has done so much for me, and instead,
I keep winning.

I also have to thank the wonderful executive board that I have the honor to work
alongside. These 11 members amaze me each day with the passion, commitment
and creativity they bring to their roles on this board. I would choose them as my
co-workers any day. This past fall we have brought a variety of programming,
tours, social events, mixers and more. I look forward to this next semester as
we bring more programming, co-host a regional conference and hold our annual

I am also very excited to bring you the fall edition of our biannual newsletter,
Salute. It is not only a great way for our members to showcase their writing, but
is also a way for us to highlight how our Chapter promotes ongoing professional
development. I am so proud of our members and I cannot wait to read the
amazing stories they bring to us next semester.

Thank you all for making our PRSSA Chapter so successful.


Amanda Knaebel

This fall... Meet

Amanda Knaebel

$3k+ SCHOLARSHIPS Catia Sabak
$9k+ SPONSORSHIPS Immediate Past President

12 REGISTRATIONS Stacey Kendall
VP Professional Development
our 2015-16 board

Katie Pusz Travis Gamblin Angela Meriedeth
VP Chapter Development VP Member Services Social Media Director

Freya Thodesen-Kasparian Gretchen Maurer Christiana Lumaj
PR Director PR Coordinator PR Coordinator

Katie Tomaszewski Kyle Taylor Randy Kester
Salute Team Salute Team Salute Team
PRSSA National Conference
Atlanta, November 6 - 10

Enjoying Atlanta’s food scene and
networking with other PRSSA Chapters.

Sharing laughs before our
Chapter’s first
presentation at a national

Started the first night in Atlanta walking the PRSSA red carpet. Our members interpret social media analytics from
the Zignal Command Center.

Speaking up and standing out
By Kyle Taylor
Hilary Hanson McKean process that young professionals Making the attempt to
presented information to a group of must prepare for. McKean discussed always raise your hand and to be
students and young professionals the fact that ultimately, everyone is the one who is willing to try the
attending the PRSSA National his or her own brand manager. It things that no one else wanted to
Conference in Atlanta. The is up to us as young professionals, do will always make you stand out.
presentation focused around helpful to decide what makes us unique McKean stressed to always be a
hints on how to speak up and stand and to take it one step further by “hand raiser” and to not be a “finger
out as young professionals within showcasing that material in a way pointer.” She also shared that being
the world of public relations. that makes you stand out even yourself is extremely important
McKean is a global partner and more. Packaging your own unique when interviewing for jobs.
managing director for Ketchum. brand through the use of social People like to hire people
She also provides counsel to media is a great way to showcase who are interesting, unique and
some of Ketchum’s well-known this. McKean also mentioned that relatable. Using some of the tips that
clients like Wendy’s, 7-Eleven and having internships under your belt McKean shared in her informative
Rubbermaid. could make you appear interesting presentation, you can be ensured
Throughout her presentation, to a variety of companies, especially that you stand out against those
many helpful tips were presented to if your internship is unique in the competing for that interview you
the audience regarding standing out sense that not everyone else is doing might have your eyes on.
-- specifically in the interviewing what you are doing.

How Nationals made me appreciate
“The Breakfast Club”
By Amanda Knaebel
As a commuter student, it of these members. given me even more stamina toward
is easy to get lost in the transitions Empathy is a key element my primary goal as this year’s
of classes, work, internships and in public relations and in order president of PRSSA – to create a
professional development that it to gain empathy we must gain community for our members, our
can be easy to forget an essential understanding – starting with those chapter and our school.
part of PR – human camaraderie. we work with. I look forward to continuing
While attending a PRSSA At Nationals, I learned about my work with our board as we create
National Conference is hands- global communications and found programming that helps members
down one of the most beneficial out about the experiences several of learn valuable skills in a way that
experiences in my professional our members had abroad. I received engages and offers the ability to
development, the most valuable tips about crisis communications form peer mentors, friendships and
takeaway from the conference was while discovering how some of family.

bonding with the individuals whom our own members had to overcome
I work with each day to bring crises of their own. We heard
programming to our members of from General Motors on corporate

yours, The
PRSSA. communications and we cheered
Much like the characters on two of our members before
serving detention in “The Breakfast their interviews with GM later that

Club,” our executive board is filled day. I was able to learn practical
with a wide range of personalities tips and advice while finding the
and diverse backgrounds. Over human elements that apply to each

the course of our long weekend, scenario.
I had the chance to gain a deeper Finding my very own
appreciation of what makes up each breakfast club in Nationals has

Finding the perfect fit in PR
By Gretchen Maurer
Theo Tyson of Trinity live, breathe and believe Dior and There will also be times
Productions talked with us about what they stand for. Always follow that what the company or client
what public relations looks like your gut and how you feel about wants is much bigger than what you
in the fashion industry -- from the company, from what they stand have room for in the budget. It is
interviewing to event planning. for to the work that they do. If you important to be creative, come up
Similar to many fields there are do not believe in the product you with the best solutions to maximize
different paths to take when it comes will not have as many successes that budget that you are approved
to the age old question, where am as you would if you did believe in for. According to Tyson, the best
I going to work? For those who the company and its products. As thing that you can do is to be
have a drive for fashion there are Tyson says, “It can still be ugly if authentic, strategic and memorable.
two main options of a PR role in it’s Gucci.”
fashion, agency and corporate. When touching on
Sometimes when we picture event planning and working in
working in the fashion industry, we an agency setting she provided
see someone like Miranda Priestly. some great advice on how to
Unfortunately, life is not always as communicate with clients --
polished. always under promise but over
Tyson references finding the deliver. Do not set the bar too
perfect fit in a job just like the fit of high right off the bat or make
those favorite perfect pair of jeans. promises that you are unable
When they fit, they look flawless to keep. Your clients will be
and everyone is asking where they happier when the event or
can get a pair -- a job works the program you are planning goes
same way. Working in-house for better than they could have
a fashion company like Dior, you expected.

Michigan Chapters meet in Atlanta to show their
Mitten PRide!

Presenting at Nationals
Amanda Knaebel, Freya Thodesen-Kasparian, Stacey Kendall and Catia Sabak
presented on the unique challenges of engaging members on a non-traditional campus,
such as commuter schools. Their advice? Ask members what they want to see, use
tools like Doodle to see when everyone is available, and most importantly - free food!


PR program recognized nationally
By Amanda Knaebel

PRSSA members at Wayne
State University will have just
one more thing to brag about
at interviews: Wayne State’s
undergraduate PR program is the
first in Metro Detroit, and only
one of two schools in Michigan, to
receive national accreditation from
Public Relations Society of America
(PRSA) as of July 11, 2015.
The certification was
formally announced November
2015 at the National PRSSA
Conference in Atlanta. Dr. Shelly
Najor, director of the PR program
and faculty advisor of Wayne State’s
Head of PR program and faculty advisor of PRSSA, Shelly Najor, accepts CEPR with
PRSSA, and 10 executive board PRSSA board members Catia Sabak and Amanda Knaebel.
members attended the conference
and accepted the award. and testimonials from students and on the process in April 2014, and
alumni. received notice of the official CEPR
Wayne State University is The campus was visited July 2015.
one of only two schools by Robert Pritchard (Oklahoma), “WSU is an amazing choice
APR, Fellow PRSA, and Don for students pursuing careers
in Michigan to have a Egle (Virginia/Texas), APR, ABC, in public relations,” said Freya
nationally-accredited who agreed that Wayne State’s PR Thodesen-Kasparian, WSU Senior
program met the national standards, PR major and PR director of PRSSA.
PR program. awarding it with the Certification “The outstanding faculty, proactive
“Graduating with an of Education for Public Relations hands-on approach to learning and
accredited PR degree from WSU (CEPR). access to the thriving professional
means I am competitive applicant “This national accreditation community in Detroit make it the
in the field of PR and that will formally recognizes what we have perfect place to get started.”
open doors that otherwise might tried to do all along – provide This accreditation sets
have been previously locked,” said excellence in academic preparedness the standards for Wayne State’s
Shay Franchini, senior PR major. and professional development for academic programs and its
“It gives me confidence to enter the our PR students,” said Dr. Najor. continued effort to aim higher.
field knowing my work is meeting “We share this recognition with the Special thanks goes to: Dr.
industry standards for ethics and professional community and our Shelly Najor, Dr. Jane Fitzgibbon,
quality.” alumni who continue to support the Dr. Donyale Padgett, Dr. Rahul
The accreditation process students and the program with time, Mitra, all the members of the
took place over the 2014-15 school opportunities and funding. We are journalism faculty, Dr. Kat Maguire,
year, when the Educational Affairs thrilled!” Dean Matt Seeger, all of the alumni
Committee from PRSA examined Dr. Najor spent many months who were interviewed during this
the curriculum of the program, gathering information needed for process and all of the students who
credentials of the professors, the evaluation and presenting it to supported and spoke for the PR
resources available at Wayne State the PRSA board. She began working program at Wayne State.

The $65 cookie: Two members’ thoughts on PRSSA
By Madison Lewis and Aya Elsherif
Fifteen minutes after the awkwardness, the enthusiasm of not to say the mixer was a hand-
welcome mixer had started, we were Professor Shelly Najor and the holding experience, but rather the
still sitting nervously in the lobby welcoming faces of the PRSSA first opportunity for us to take our
of the student center attempting to executive board (and let’s not forget own initiative toward networking in
strategize our “fashionably-late” the cookies) left us with a true sense a comfortable environment.
entrance. Instead we arrived in the of belonging. The mixer made it evident
middle of the presentation – cue the The mixer began with an that PRSSA is not just another
unfashionable. Despite our initial introduction of the executive board student club, but rather a professional
members. They gave us a organization that is positively
refreshing reminder they engaged and active both on campus
were in our seats just one and within the community. Any
year ago and an informative initial fears, doubts, or uncertainties
presentation regarding the were washed away within minutes,
nuts and bolts of PRSSA, what and we quickly realized there is
it had to offer for members really no reason not to join. After
and how we could apply that all, who can say no to more cookies?
membership to our future
careers. We also learned of
the numerous benefits that
PRSSA can offer us. That’s
Students learn about PRSSA at Welcome Mixer

PRSSA gives the from Pre-K to grade 12.
While our holiday drive only
gift of reading lasted a couple of weeks, the amount
of books gathered proved just how
By Christiana Lumaj awesome our community is. The book
drive resulted in a collection of nearly
As young PR professionals,
150 books.
we know our number one obligation
“Beyond Basics and its
is to make sure our represented
stakeholders are always appreciative of
organization has corporate social
the support our Read to Rise program
responsibility. This means constantly
receives, especially when coming from
seeking opportunities for our company
an organization with young students
to give back to its community.
such as PRSSA,” said Elizabeth Nanas,
This year, Wayne State’s
director of revenue and education
PRSSA took part in being socially
partnerships of Beyond Basics. “While
responsible by collaborating with
some see a book as just another story,
Beyond Basics to give the gift of
our students see it as an essential tool
reading to local students in Pontiac
in their continuing journey to rise up.”
and Detroit.
The books collected will be
Beyond Basics is a student-
distributed to students as part of the
centered non-profit working to bring
Beyond Basics’ Read to Rise Program
literacy by providing supplemental
and will be shared as a reward for all
programs to students in the Detroit and
students who publish a book in their
Pontiac school districts. The program
publishing center.
focuses on all school aged children,
Five ways to enhance your agency tour
By Rebecca Cooper

Going on an Agency Tour? You
might want to read this. As a newly declared
PR major, I never even heard of an “agency
tour” until about three weeks ago. Prior to
joining Wayne State’s PRSSA chapter, I
never explored PR outside of a classroom
setting. Unsure of what an agency tour was,
but knowing I needed to learn more about
the profession, I impulsively signed up for
one. However, I can confidently say that I
was NOT prepared. At some point in your
PR professional development journey,
you’ll tour a public relations agency, so I
wrote these tips to help. Some are probably
painfully obvious, but I am hoping my
mistakes and shortcomings will help prepare
Rebecca Cooper and other PRSSA members visit MCCI for an inside look. you for a great agency tour experience.

1. Research the agency before the tour. Take the time to investigate the agency you are visiting. Review its
website, get a feel for the work culture, scan its Glassdoor profile and visit the agency’s social media handles.
Trust me, you’ll feel far less intimidated if you walk in with some general understanding of the company
you’re touring. Not to mention, you’ll understand and appreciate the scope of responsibilities of the public
relations professionals you’ll meet. You wouldn’t walk into a job interview without knowing anything about the
company. Treat an agency tour as a potential job opportunity.

2. Dress the part. Going on an agency tour is an excellent excuse to take a shower. You’re not going to want to
roll out of bed and throw on a hoody for this. Allocate yourself with enough time to polish your look. We live in
a visually-driven world where first impressions count. General rule of thumb: If you’re unsure of what to wear
to your agency tour, go business casual (black pants and blazer). Avoid wearing jeans, keep the Ugg boots at
home and definitely don’t wear perfume or cologne heavy enough to induce a migraine.

3. Bring a pen and paper. Take notes! Take notes! Take notes! Write down any questions you have, names of
the professionals you’ve met with and anything that was said with any remote value. WRITE. IT. DOWN. Extra
points if you invest in a leather bound journal. The students who participated on the agency tour with me who
had notebooks looked much more professional than those who showed up with nothing at all. And trust me,
being the only person in the room without a writing utensil or piece of paper is mildly embarrassing.

4. Ask questions. Do NOT be shy. Agency tours are designed for us to learn about the industry. Although it is
true there are no stupid questions, I would recommend asking questions that may benefit the entire group. It’s
helpful to your peers if you save personal questions for one-on-one time after the tour is complete. Keep in
mind, PR professionals are extremely busy, so maximize the limited time you have on the tour with questions
that get to the grit.

5. Say “Thank You.” At the end of the tour, be sure to shake hands with each individual who took the time
out of his or her busy schedule to help you evolve as a young professional. This also is an excellent time
to exchange business cards. So tip number 5.1 – Create an organized place where you can store all of the
connections you make on your tours!
PRSA gets “Smart” about media relations
By Shay Franchini
One thing that separates fluencers. Let
veteran public relations profession- them know that
als from new professionals is hav- you’ve read
ing established media contacts. It their work,
is not something you receive when especially if
you graduate college or even on you enjoyed it.
the first day at your internship. It Twitter is an
takes time and skill to gain a jour- amazing tool for
nalist’s trust and respect. Michael these nonchalant
Smart, founder of Michael Smart kudos. Tweeting
PR, recently gave a two-hour train- out something
ing seminar to the Central Michi- as simple as, outdated practice, I can only regret-
gan Chapter of PRSA titled “New ‘Hey, I really enjoyed your story,’ fully say it is still commonplace.
Secrets of Media Relations Su- can have significant impact on a Do your research. Find out who
perstars.” Smart discussed media journalist’s decision to open up is buying what the client is sell-
relations tactics he found to yield an email from you down the road. ing. Once you’ve established the
the highest advantage on getting a Smart gave an excellent suggestion demographic, research where this
story published and building media when he proposed giving credit demographic gets their informa-
relationships. to media that breaks a story first. tion. Sure, every client wants to be
Important Interaction Often times, journalists are under published in the New York Times
In his presentation, Smart pressure to get news out the fastest or the Washington Post, but that
had confirmed what I had always and it is always nice to be recog- might not be the best source when
hoped was true - start interacting nized for something difficult to do targeting a specific public.
with these influencers/bloggers/ in an industry. Since there is now a need
journalists now before anything Pitch Perfect to attract Millennial purchasing
is pitched. He told the audience While one hopes that ge- power, digital-first outlets such as
to spend ten minutes a day taking neric email pitches sent to dozens Buzzfeed, Huffington Post and
time to interact with media in- of journalists and reporters is an
Continued on page 18

Professionals recognizing the talents of our members

PR students helped OTTO Detroit and Penske cruise to Amanda Knaebel celebrates with DTE Energy
victory lane at the Detroit Grand Prix. co-workers after receiving PRSA Detroit’s 2015
Donald P. Durocher Memorial Scholarship.
Wayne State and PRSSA head to the races
By Freya Thodesen-Kasparian

of Franco Public Relations to but to consistently create engaging
actively engage audiences on content using interviews with
Facebook, Twitter, Instagram fans and drivers, and uploading
and YouTube. photographs and video clips of the
While there were many race festivities.
exciting aspects of being the Over the course of race
voice behind social media weekend, the efforts of the students
platforms with such dedicated running the social media accounts
fans, there were certainly a few were noted for their creative and
highlights that stood out. humorous approach to getting
One of my personal favorite people engaged and excited about
experiences was the Media the race.
One of the cornerstones Hot Lap, in which reporters The experience stressed
of the public relations program and journalists from the local media the importance of being flexible,
at WSU is the outside experience market were invited to take a test being prepared for the unexpected
and internships that students are drive around the Belle Isle track with and being able to work under tight
connected with each semester. professional racecar drivers. It was deadlines. Sudden changes were a
Building and maintaining a not only an incredible adrenaline regular part of the programming,
formidable resume is of utmost rush to go soaring from start to but the whole team pulled off an
importance in the PR field, where finish line at top speeds, but it was incredibly successful result in the
professional development – both also insightful and interesting to end.
inside and outside of the classroom experience a media event firsthand. The WSU students on the
– is a top priority. Race weekend itself Detroit Grand Prix social media
Though I have been consisted of rainy weather, open team helped contribute a 34 percent
connected with many rewarding laptops and constant monitoring increase in total social media
experiences throughout my time as of social media platforms. impressions from 2014 to 2015, as
a student in this program, one of the Public relations and broadcast well as an 86 percent increase in total
most interesting and dynamic was journalism students were put into reach of the social media channels
that of the Chevrolet Detroit Grand several teams to not only manage from 2014 to 2015 – reaching a total
Prix at Belle Isle. interactions through social media, of 12.4 million people in 2015.
During the month of May
2015, myself and 19 other students
in the public relations and broadcast
journalism programs at WSU were
invited to manage and develop
content for the Detroit Grand Prix
social media channels. We were
expected not only to be the driving
force (pun intended) behind content
for the weekend of the race itself,
but also for the month leading up to
the big event.
Our work involved direct
supervision from Mark Russell
of Otto Detroit, Merrill Cain of
Penske Racing and Alex Fulbright

Busting biases at annual Diversity Summit
By Rebecca Cooper
According to Rachel most was Rachel’s belief we need outsiders ask about other races.
Godsil, “scientists estimate we to veer away from conversations Darren doesn’t quite fit the
only have access to 2 percent of that emphasize negative societal conventional description of a “black
our brains’ emotional and cognitive disparities. Rachel suggests we person” but also doesn’t necessarily
process.” In laymen’s terms, you shift the tone to a more positive and look “white.”
and I have implicit biases. We have empowering narrative. Highlighting His experience throughout
preconceived views of people and the successes, the triumphs and the his life has told him he needs to
things, and we aren’t even aware of anomalies will be the gateway to a find a group to associate with,
it. paradigm shift. but this pressure is extremely
The purpose of the Diversity Acknowledging only alienating. Questions like, “where
Summit was to hopefully uncover negative implications of inherent are you from, from?” is an everyday
some of these deeply entrenched bias will inadvertently reinforce conversational norm for Darren.
biases. So how do we dismantle bias. Methodology that focuses This is inherent bias working in the
our own implicit bias? After all, solely on negatives is dangerous disguise of innocent curiosity.
our brains’ process 11 million bits because it discourages efficacy As I’ve gotten older,
of information at a time, but we are and it is paradoxical to the cause. I’ve tried to take the ineffective
only cognizant of 40 bits. Our minds’ Bombardment of negativity incites approach of color blindness. I’ve
subconsciously compartmentalize feelings of hopelessness. People always viewed race as nothing more
information without our consent. will not change if they do not than an ugly societal construct.
Rachel showcased an eye- believe they have the capacity to do But pretending race doesn’t exist,
opening neurological explanation so. will not rid the world of the evils
of implicit bias. She shared with The presence of inherent racial divisions cause. To pretend
us how the brain organizes sensory bias in my life is most easily race doesn’t exist minimizes the
input (external stimuli) into schemas identifiable in the context of race. My importance of Darren’s story.
within the brain. Essentially, we boyfriend, Darren, is not Caucasian Do I know exactly what
have preconceived templates for like me. Physically, he doesn’t fit I need to do to most effectively
nearly everything and everyone. In the template of a “white person.” obliterate inherent bias? No. But I
order to combat inherent bias, we To me, he’s the man I plan to marry. do know asking questions might
must first acknowledge the existence To others who meet him for the first ignite an alternative perspective.
of this impassive cognitive process time, his physical appearance raises To be conscious of a bias is the first
and stop it in its tracks by changing questions. As the comedian, Amer step to destroying it. I will start by
the dialogue. Zhar, at the summit joked, ‘where is no longer asking, “where are you
What resonated with me the he from, from?’ is a question a lot of from, from?”

Students “bust biases” at PRSA Detroit’s Sponsored by PRSA
Detroit, Department of
annual Ofield Dukes Diversity Summit Communication and GM.

Living what you learn
By Katie Pusz
“College is simply a money communication. My
scam!” “Slide through college previous internships
with the bare minimum. It’s really hadn’t endured any
only your hands-on experience that crises during my studies
counts.” “What does any of this and, to be frank, I wasn’t
have to do with the real world?!” sure I ever wanted to
We’ve all heard these college know that experience
clichés at least once. Maybe you’ve after studying the crisis
even said them yourself – I know chapter. Just reading
that I have at several points in my about the stress and
college career. And yes, sometimes examining case studies Immediacy? Cooperating with the
you’re right – maybe that general made my stomach cringe, and I media and publics? Check and
elective is costing you money at tried to kill the thought of ever check! Every note I had taken in
no value to your career. Maybe finding myself in a similar scenario. class, hardly 24 hours before just
you had to take a class that mostly That fear, however, lunged out played out in front of me within 20
reiterated what you already knew. of its grave the next morning and minutes. I didn’t even have time to
But maybe, by chance, you had an came to life at my very own desk. feel the anxious rush of plunging
experience like me: you signed up The Detroit Historical Museum into a crisis.
for a class that you thought would was under a media crisis -- how Only on Friday, after the
be routine and slightly boring, only timely. museum was over the peak of the
to find out it was the middle of a Per usual, I had brought crisis and the dust was settling, was
crossroad -- the exact place you my class materials with me I able to think clearly enough to
needed to be in order to succeed at hoping to study during my reflect on the week. Had the crisis
that particular time. downtime. Instead, I found a not occurred, the weight of the
Summer 2015 was a much more helpful review in my crisis chapter may not have sunken
season of unforgettable people live environment. My boss, Bob, in until it was much too late, such
and lessons. I accepted a public briefed me on our communication as already having a job where I
relations internship with the Detroit plan, the crisis team, and informed was getting paid to extinguish the
Historical Museum and was finally me that he’d be speaking with the fire myself. Likewise, I would have
taking my Fundamentals of PR media. Hmm… Where had I heard been totally clueless as to why the
class – yes, my fundamentals about these management tools sequence of events was happening
course after a year and half on before? Oh yeah – yesterday. Bob at the museum in that particular
PRSSA’s executive board and two went on to tell me about our legal fashion. Being able to identify
internships. As you can imagine, counsel and how the situation was the steps and contribute educated
I expected to breeze through it going to be framed. opinions enabled me to be active
without any pivotal stops. To my Walking back to my desk, in the crisis, which is something I
grateful surprise, however, I had I overheard a co-worker on the couldn’t have contributed had I not
just walked into the perfect storm. phone with one of the museum’s been in PR Fundamentals.
I was two months into sponsors, reassuring her of the And so my lesson was learned:
my internship and had just truth of the scenario and that it give every class, internship
spent a typical Monday in my was being handled. Just then, Bob and experience a chance before
fundamentals class. Our discussion handed me a copy of the press organizing it under a shameful
centered on the protocol and release as he ran downstairs to cliché -- it might just be on your
invaluable significance of crisis interview with the news media. path for a reason.

The Allen Lewis Agency shares tips for creatives
By Darius Jackson
On November 16, an different mediums. get involved in the organizations
array of visuals artists, authors, relative to your artistry. Being
fashion designers, photographers Be Social. What platforms can strategic as to the people you
and more attended the “Business help elevate your artistry? It can associate with and places you
of Arts: PR Tips for Creatives” be Twitter, Facebook or a simple frequent often may provide
discussion hosted by the Alumni face-to-face interaction, but no unknown opportunities.
Office of Wayne State University’s matter what means you use to
College of Fine, Performing and communicate, be interactive and Be Different. What sets you apart
Communications Arts. This event represent your brand at all times. from the rest? Once the difference
was held at Ponyride Business Be Strategic. How can you use in your artistry is acknowledged
Center located in Detroit’s in comparison to others in your
Corktown neighborhood. This field, use it to your advantage
unique discussion was led by because what makes your brand
public relations expert and unique and “different” is the
Wayne State alumna Jocelyn K. perfect branding tool! People
Allen. Allen is the co-founder tend to resonate more with
and CEO of The Allen Lewis brands that are outliers from
Agency. The Allen Lewis the norm and do not follow the
Agency specializes in branding status quo. There are plenty of
development, marketing, name brands with a flock of
communication planning and copycats behind them.
reputation management. Here are Allen expressed having a
the highlights of the discussion: special place in her heart for
creatives of all facets, as she
Be Versatile. What other relative spoke about the beginning of
aspect of your creativity can you her career in creative positions
harness for gain? Tap into all of such as a producer, video editor
your strengths. Most creatives and stage manager. Allen is
have a plethora of skills, such as your time that will assist you an abundant source of knowledge
teaching in the community about long term? Many people obtain with a distinct perspective on how
your artistry that may provide jobs through referrals and use creatives can promote themselves
extra income. Also, be open to what Allen coins as “strategic through practical PR steps that can
collaborate with creatives of volunteerism”. Volunteer and be easily utilized.

It’s all about connections...

Former PRSSA board member, Courtney Members of PRSSA network with PRSSA builds valuable relationships
Zemke invites us to GM professionals and other students with media at PRSA’s “Meet the Media”
PRSSA has been busy this fall...

Video Shooting
Workshop with
Kim Piper-Aiken
Tanner Friedman.
Breakfast Chat with Young Pros

PRSSA Detroit
Ofeild Dukes
Diversity Summit

President attends SS Digital Media Agency
Leadership Rally in (Above)
Scottsdale, Arizona.
(Left and Below)

Grand Valley invites
Mich. PRSSA Chapters
for “Unity in the Mitten”
Conference (Above and

GM Social Media Command Center

PRSA Gets “Smart” Continued
Mashable, all ranked in the top ments. Finding a way to highlight just trying to break into media re-
five for unique visitors accord- these individuals over the company lations or if you are an established
ing to Smart, are the new sought as a whole will elevate the chances professional, anyone can pitch to
after outlets for brand or product of getting a story picked up. Smart a journalist and start building a
exposure. These are not the only suggested making a list of all char- relationship. Take time to research
outlets PR professionals should acters involved in the story and fo- what traditional (and nontradition-
be tapping into. Targeting public cus on the characters most relatable al) outlets the target publics utilize.
influencers such as celebrities and to your audience. He also suggest- Make sure to start establishing
utilizing their audiences can also ed making pop culture fads work relationships now before pitching
be key in raising public and media for a client’s story. If the client is a story and remember that corpora-
interest. Taking time to understand a local zoo who just built a state tions are much less relatable than
the consumer on a personal level of the art lion den and suddenly a a real person is. With these helpful
will make formulating compelling story about lions sweeps the coun- tactics, Michael Smart was able to
content a breeze when pitching to try, take the opportunity to propel leave the audience with a confident
the media. the client into the fad and call upon and clear approach on interacting
Compelling Content the relationships you have begun with the media and establishing
Consumers are interested in establishing with the proper media. positive relationships.
real people over corporate achieve- It does not matter if you are
Letter from the editors
As a Chapter, we are so fortunate to have so many opportunities presented to us.
Thank you to everyone who sponsored our executive board’s trip to the National
Conference in Atlanta this year! Without your generous support, we would not have
the opportunities that we do, not only this year with the national conference, but
year round with all of your generous sponsorships of scholarships, events, internship
opportunities and agency tours.

We would also like to thank our anonymous donor for funding this edition of Salute.
It gives us pride to help showcase not only our member’s experiences, but their
talent as well. Congratulations to our first time writers, too! We were so impressed
by the quality of stories that came in from our new members. We are looking forward
to seeing what you will submit next semester.

Lastly, we hope you’ll join us this March for our regional conference that we are
co-hosting with Michigan State University. Check out the back cover for more

The Salute Team

Thank you to all of the
professionals who serve as
our role models, mentors and
teachers. Our Chapter would
not be as successful without your
ongoing support.

March 18-19, 2016

Find more information at
Facebook: The Tale Of Our City:
PR’s Role in Detroit’s Revitalization