Tuesday, January 04, 2005

Why am I the bomb for PR?

Here's my application essay about why I think I'd be an asset to Public Relations. This is as much an exercise for me as it is to prove myself to others. I hope it is professionally written since if there's going to be one skill I hope I gain it is that: professional writing ability. Please comment and rip this apart if it doesn't match up with good reasons for me to be a PR practitioner or if my grammar is the pits. Anyways, it's interesting to hear myself give my reasons and for once I'm not asking or hearing what anyone else has to think but you.

Application Essay

(b)

Like Nancy Geddie, the program coordinator for Public Relations at Niagra College, my educational history and my passion is for English Literature. I did a four-year Bachelor of Arts Degree with Honors, writing essays and doing presentations on cultural and literary subjects.

After completing my degree, I considered doing Journalism but instead pursued Public Relations at Conestoga College because it appealed to me as a dynamic career option and it uses many of the skills I gained studying English, though applied differently. Instead of teaching, which was the popular choice among my peers, I thought that the mix of theoretical and practical skills that I would gain from combining a university and a college degree would allow me to be aware of ‘universal’ thinking while being mindful of the particular business trends and practices around me.

One of the most fascinating projects I did was in my dissertation on the holocaust, presenting Art Spiegelman’s Maus, and discussing the graphic novel as an emerging medium for the study of history. The skills gained from doing presentations like these are applicable to PR because by advocating comic books and changing their reputation as a gaudy, low-class form of literature by using examples from class where we saw that the comic book or “graphic novel” could really be a useful tool for historical documentary, dissemination of myth and literary genius I was doing what any organization should do when it promotes its product or service. In this case, it was a particular product but it was also comic books in general. By showing instead of telling, I wasn’t forcing catch-phrases down anyone’s throat or making up cute little jingles but I was, in a sense, giving them an opportunity to see and try out the genre itself. Since Public Relations involves increasing awareness, gaining acceptance and influencing action, doing presentations of this kind definitely gave me an understanding of how communicating information can encourage others to do their own investigation and influence their perceptions.

Throughout school, I did contract work for the Community Mental Health Clinic in Guelph. There I had clients with disabilities who I taught life skills and helped them build confidence, autonomy and other abilities. One of the most valuable and applicable skills I learned for PR is that communication involves an active knowledge of its intended audience. By communicating strategically with a purpose in mind and by carefully selecting the vocabulary, mode of speech and delivery for the audience, I could effectively communicate with my clients. They would be much more open, helpful and enthusiastic about the activities of the day as a result and much more likely to excel in whatever task they faced. Because PR involves consultation, mediation and other communication skills, my experience, along with my leadership abilities demonstrated through my history of working with children in both the public and camp setting make me more prepared for a career in PR.

I feel that my resourcefulness, creativity and analytical thinking will benefit me a great deal in PR because while I enjoy debate, I think that Public Relations should be a two-way dialogue between an organization and its publics. In order to execute campaigns, clarify key messages and issue News Releases, it takes a thorough application of the RACE formula: research, analysis, communication and evaluation. Since I’ve now had some experience at the entry level of education in PR, I’m determined to devote myself to more intense and beneficial opportunities in post-graduate studies within the field and I found that Niagara College offered just such a program.

Barrett Cressman
595 words

4 Comments:

Blogger Chai Latte said...

Barrett,

You're writing is great, professional....yadayadayada. BUT!!! Niagara - is spelled wrong. Not Niagra, but Niagara. Sorry to be nit picky, but it's the details! It's all in the details. Just wanted to check in on your blog and see how you're doing. Glad you're well.
NiagAra. stupid, huh?

4:28 PM  
Blogger tripwalking said...

"The skills gained from doing presentations like these are applicable to PR because by advocating comic books and changing their reputation as a gaudy, low-class form of literature by using examples from class where we saw that the comic book or “graphic novel” could really be a useful tool for historical documentary, dissemination of myth and literary genius I was doing what any organization should do when it promotes its product or service."

That's a huuuuge sentence!

11:35 PM  
Blogger Savtadotty said...

"I feel that my resourcefulness, creativity and analytical thinking will benefit me a great deal in PR because while I enjoy debate, I think that Public Relations should be a two-way dialogue between an organization and its publics."

It might be better if you rewrote this sentence to emphasize that your talents and skills would benefit your PR clients (rather than you). That would indicate to the reader of the essay that you're already thinking about PR as a service, not a form of self-expression.

1:22 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

anyways = anyway

2:14 PM  

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