Jane Dvorak Leaves Her Mark on Fisher

PRSSA and The PRIMA Group were fortunate enough to have an unforgettable guest visit on November 9th. Jane Dvorak was the chair of the 2017 PRSA International Conference and we were unbelievably lucky to hear from her. Her visit was short, but during that hour we learned and we laughed more than we could have imagined.

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Jane brought an unbelievable amount of energy to Basil 208. A Colorado resident, she told us all about her incredible career in public relations. She considers herself a “consultalancer,” a word she created, combining the work of a consultant and a freelancer (two things she says are basically just the same). Jane owns her own company, JKD & Company Inc., and does a huge portion of her “consultalancing” for a plumbing business. She taught us that chances are, whatever you end up doing is not going to be overly glamorous, you just have to make sure you love what you’re doing.

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Jane’s love for the work that she does was beyond clear. She inspired us saying, “If you continue to invest in yourself, there’s nothing you can’t do.” She shared with us what it takes to be a good intern and what you have to do to thrive in the PR industry.

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Jane’s sense of humor and incredible laugh were unforgettable. We were lucky enough to be the last stop on her #Chaironthego journey. Jane visited as many places in the country as she could during her year as chair of the international conference. Jane shared with us how amazing it was to visit so many places. However, no matter how many amazing places she visits, her favorite place will always be home.

 

Author – Colleen Senglaub, Chapter Treasurer

 

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#PRSSANC 2017 – A Revolution Recap

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The PRSSA National Conference this year was one for the ages. Not only was our small chapter able to take nine students, our largest group yet, but we had the opportunity to travel to Boston, Massachusetts, a beautiful destination in the fall. We were able to attend the conference for three days – from Friday the 6th through Sunday the 8th, and I’d say we definitely got the very most out of our visit!

From the minute we arrived, we split up and were able to attend nearly every session held during our three day National Conference extravaganza. In general, I’d say one of our collective favorite moments from the conference was Roll Call on Saturday morning. Each school attending the conference was put into one grand ballroom, and each chapter had to come up with a creative way to let the rest of the crowd know, “we have arrived!” Thanks to one of our members, Jake Allen, I’d say we had a crowd favorite.

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As the President of our chapter, I was able to attend the President’s session which was a presentation by Ben Butler of Top Hat IMC. With such an engaging and entertaining public speaker, this session was one of my favorites. Ben gave us tips on how to be great leaders in our chapters and our careers, and I definitely came away feeling like I could take on the world! Here were some of his tips:

1. Care about your people. Forgiveness is necessary!
2. Have a roadmap, or goal for your year.
3. Always have an event calendar.
4. You can’t say yes to everything.
5. Do what you say you will do.
6. Resourcefulness is an expectation.
7. Have a solution in your back pocket.
8. Have mentors!

Another favorite session from a few in our group includes Creative Jobs in PR with Michael DiSalvo of Ogilvy, who was a hilarious and dynamic speaker, who talked about how all you have to do is find your passion. Whatever that passion is – there’s a PR job for it! He related his message to his own life, and how he started out not knowing when his next job would come, or what he even wanted to do. He was able to relate to us, which was refreshing and appreciated by his audience – a whole bunch of eager PR students.

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Photo from @HofstraPRSSA

Although there were countless incredible speakers, sessions, and lessons learned throughout the course of the conference, I’d say one message that every one of us came away with is that maintaining connections and having mentors is incredibly important. One of our members, Meghan Cleary, put it perfectly.

One of the most memorable lessons learned from the conference is that connections are invaluable. Always nurture and grow your network to build a strong team of professional partners that can support you later in your career.” 

With that, I’d like to thank those who sponsored us and made it possible for us to attend then National Conference this year. Thank you to the PRSA Rochester Board of Directors for their generous sponsorship, and constant support. The Media and Communications Department at St. John Fisher also made a tremendous contribution which made it possible for us to take such a large, dedicated group of students this year. Finally, one of our Chapter Presidents from last year, Olivia Rotondo, who was kind enough to give us a very generous donation as well. Without these contributions, we would not have been able to attend this incredible conference, learn countless lessons, or grow as a chapter.

This PRSSA National Conference was certainly one to remember, and I know our chapter will be counting down the days until #PRSSANC 2018, in Austin, Texas!

 

 

Author: Allie Rudy – Chapter President

 

 

4th Annual Gilda’s Cup

The 4th Annual Gilda’s Cup event was held at St. John Fisher on April 1st, and many members of our PRSSA chapter helped to put it on. Gilda’s Cup is a charity event for Gilda’s Club of Rochester that The PRIMA Group, Fisher’s student run firm has put on for the 4th year in a row now.

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Every year we host several collegiate comedy improv teams, having them compete, being judged by professionals from the Rochester area. Our teams this year included SUNY Geneseo, Syracuse University, Buffalo State, LeMoyne, and SUNY Oswego. Our panel of judges included Virginia Butler from the D&C, Elvio Fernandes from the band Daughtry, Brother Wease from Radio 95.1, and Scott Pukos, from Rochester City Newspaper. All of the teams did a great job, but in the end, SUNY Oswego came out on top, and won the Gilda’s Cup!

This year in particular was a special event. Because Gilda’s Club of Rochester charity is in memory of Gilda Radner, and her husband Gene Wilder recently passed away, this year’s cup was dedicated to him. Therefore, the theme for the event was Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory, and overall it was a huge success! Along with themed decorations, snapchat filters, and food (like the very popular chocolate fountain), we raffled off baskets for people to win. All proceeds from ticket sales at the event, and from the basket raffles went to Gilda’s Club of Rochester.

There was a great turn out for the event this year, which is always nice to see considering The PRIMA Group, including members of our PRSSA chapter, have been working on putting together this event since September. We were honored to help out with this wonderful event, and cannot wait to do the same next year!

Special thanks to The PRIMA Group for putting on this event for the 4th year in a row, to Gianna Sarkis who was in charge of the event plus the rest of the Gilda’s Cup team, and Johanna Lester – the director of events from Gilda’s Club Rochester.

 

Author: Allie Rudy | Treasurer of PRSSA Tom Proietti Chapter

4th Annual Gilda’s Cup

The 4th Annual Gilda’s Cup event was held at St. John Fisher on April 1st, and many members of our PRSSA chapter helped to put it on. Gilda’s Cup is a charity event for Gilda’s Club of Rochester that The PRIMA Group, Fisher’s student run firm has put on for the 4th year in a row now.

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Every year we host several collegiate comedy improv teams, having them compete, being judged by professionals from the Rochester area. Our teams this year included SUNY Geneseo, Syracuse University, Buffalo State, LeMoyne, and SUNY Oswego. Our panel of judges included Virginia Butler from the D&C, Elvio Fernandes from the band Daughtry, Brother Wease from Radio 95.1, and Scott Pukos, from Rochester City Newspaper. All of the teams did a great job, but in the end, SUNY Oswego came out on top, and won the Gilda’s Cup!

This year in particular was a special event. Because Gilda’s Club of Rochester charity is in memory of Gilda Radner, and her husband Gene Wilder recently passed away, this year’s cup was dedicated to him. Therefore, the theme for the event was Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory, and overall it was a huge success! Along with themed decorations, snapchat filters, and food (like the very popular chocolate fountain), we raffled off baskets for people to win. All proceeds from ticket sales at the event, and from the basket raffles went to Gilda’s Club of Rochester.

There was a great turn out for the event this year, which is always nice to see considering The PRIMA Group, including members of our PRSSA chapter, have been working on putting together this event since September. We were honored to help out with this wonderful event, and cannot wait to do the same next year!

Special thanks to The PRIMA Group for putting on this event for the 4th year in a row, to Gianna Sarkis who was in charge of the event plus the rest of the Gilda’s Cup team, and Johanna Lester – the director of events from Gilda’s Club Rochester.

 

Author: Allie Rudy | Treasurer of PRSSA Tom Proietti Chapter

fisher 5 signs

As students and guests walked throughout the St. John Fisher College campus this week, it was impossible not to notice the many faces around. Not faces of other students, but faces on posters that represent the five signs of mental struggling.

The Public Relations Student Society of America (PRSSA) Chapter on campus is participating in The PRSSA Bateman Case Study Competition and has launched a campaign,  fisher 5 signs , which will run until Friday, February 24  to raise awareness of mental health on campus.  As part of the campaign, 540 posters have been hung up around campus that represent the five signs of emotional suffering. The 540 posters represent the number of Fisher undergraduate students who could be struggling with mental health according to statistics from the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI).

The fisher 5 signs campaign was designed to create a conversation about a topic that is often times neglected. These posters display and label the face of the 5 signs of mental distress, and refer viewers to the web page they created. The five signs that may mean that someone who be struggling with mental distress are personality change, agitation, withdrawal, poor self-care, and hopelessness. These attributes may be a sign of a larger struggle with mental health, and it is important that we acknowledge these signs in ourselves and others to seek care or help as early as possible. On the web page, fisher5signs.weebly.com, people can learn more about mental health in order to better understand the negative stigma, help resources, and how mental health is just as important as physical health.

Katey Padden, Content Manager of the Bateman Competition team comments, “It’s great to hear people asking about the posters all around campus… our goal was to create a conversation.”

On Wednesday, the Bateman team partnered with the Student Prevention & Outreach Team to host Wellness Wednesday. These teams collaborated to educate students passing by in the campus center, and engage over 30 students to sign the Campaign to Change Direction pledge, which can also be found on the fisher5signs.weebly.com website.

Team members include Jade Rood, Meghan Cleary, Katey Padden, and PRSSA co-presidents Olivia Rotondo and Alexandra Hristodoulou. The team has been consulting an advisory panel of experts in the subject of public relations, including alumni Kevin Kane and Nadine Krimow-General, along with active PRSA Rochester members Melissa Greco Lopes and Jim Mignano.

Visit the website, fisher5signs.weebly.com, and engage on social media using the hashtag #fisher5signs to become a part of the conversation!

Public Speaking Workshop: American Red Cross Youth Leadership Program

When Lilliana Sherwood from the American Red Cross approached the PRSSA executive board at St. John Fisher, asking if we would like to help out with their Youth Leadership Program, we couldn’t turn down the opportunity! For this Youth Leadership program, we were asked to run a workshop regarding public speaking. As our executive board is comprised of four Media management majors, we were eager to begin working on this project that is right up our alley.

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For the workshop, high school students from Monroe County schools came to St. John Fisher. Allison Rudy, Olivia Rotondo, Jade Rood, and Gianna Sarkis, along with the help of our PRSSA chapter advisor, Professor Arien Rozelle, led and facilitated the workshop. We decided that a mock press conference, about a fictional tornado that has struck, would be the perfect way for the students to practice public speaking while discussing communication in a disaster situation, tying in the learning objectives of the Red Cross.

We began by discussing public speaking: the importance of it, as well as the difficulties a speaker may face. Our audience of 24 high school students was lively and involved, sharing their insights with the room. We then watched an example press conference, and broke off into two classrooms, then again into two groups. Making sure each student got an equal chance to speak. For our activity, each student was either a member of the City of Rochester Mayor’s office speaking to the press, or a member of the press, asking questions and probing for information.

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The students were engaged and enthusiastic, making the activity fun for us and for them. While the students participated in the press conference, the facilitators recorded it so that we could watch it afterwards. This gave the students a chance to learn from, and get feedback regarding their public speaking. The workshop went quickly, and smoothly; it was a great success!

Thanks to Lilliana Sherwood for asking us to lead the workshop, as well as the rest of the Red Cross Volunteers who helped with the activity.

 

Author: Allison Rudy

 

Social Media Week

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A couple of St. John Fisher’s Media and Communications students created and ran Fisher’s first Social Media Week. The week long event featured speakers Monday November 14th through Friday November 18th, ranging from personal branding to social media analytics, and everything in between. Everyone on campus was welcome to attend, and each night had an impressive turn out.

The students that founded Social Media Week, Ashley Grates and Rachel Zalewski, are part of Fisher’s student run agency The PRIMA Group. With the help of other members of the group, namely Alexandra Hristodoulou, these students reached out to many Media professionals in the Rochester area, having them featured in events throughout the week.

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Leah Stacy and Pete Wayner speaking to their captive audience.

The week started with a Brand Yourself workshop on Monday, featuring Rochester professionals Leah Stacey: Communications Professor at Nazareth College and Co-founder of Upstate Social, and Pete Wayner: Content Manager at Dixon Schwabl. They spoke about how to get noticed, being known for something, and staying consistent to create a top notch personal brand, and starting now!

Tuesday featured Jess DiLuglio: Social Media Manager for Dixon Schwabl, and Jim Mignano: Senior Account Executive at Text 1oo. They were featured in a Jobs in Social Media panel, where they talked about what they do for their jobs on a daily basis, and some of the most important aspects of a job in social media. They finished with advice to the audience about things that will make us stand out when applying for jobs in the social media field.

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Craig Troskosky from Edelman Intel.

Craig Troskosky from Edelman Intel spoke at Wednesday’s Social Media Week event, discussing analytics, how important they are, and how to best use them when working in social media. He even used St. John Fisher’s very own Professor Arien Roselle’s social media accounts to demonstrate just how powerful a tool analytics can be, and showed how we all have an influence online.

Thursday night Rachel, Ashley, and Alexandra hosted a St. John Fisher Alumni Panel, which featured Mandy Bly: Account Coordinator at Launch Team Inc., Jill Alaimo: Account Assistant at Tipping Point Communications, Andrew Knoblauch: Social and Digital Media Supervisor at Dixon Schwabl, and Katrina Busch: President at Roberts Communications. The alums answered various questions about starting out and getting noticed in the workforce, what they do at their jobs now, and what they look for in interns. The panel provided lots of insight, and valuable advice to the audience of current Fisher students looking to make it into the same fields.

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From left to right: Mandy Bly, Andrew Knoblauch, Katrina Busch, and Jill Alaimo.

The week was capped off with a Do’s and Don’ts of Social Media panel comprised of Ashley, Rachel, and various students from Nazareth College. They talked about not sharing too much online, and the best ways to use social media to your advantage for communicating with professionals. The event ended with a discussion between panel and audience members about best uses of social media.

All throughout the week, the events were being live tweeted with the hashtag #SocialSJFC, and snap-chatted using a filter created by Ashley Grates. All in all, St. John Fisher’s very first Social Media Week was a grand success, and we hope to see it grow in the years to come.

Written by: Allison Rudy
Photo Credits: 
Social Media Week Logo: Ashley Grates
Brand Yourself Event: Arien Rozelle
Analytics Event: Alexandra Hristodoulou
Alumni Panel: Jake Allen