Four years, three major changes, two universities and one degree in Public Relations later, I landed my dream job at Konnect PR. Graduating at the top of my class, I was ready to take on the world and show everyone my skills. Little did I know, real world PR is very different from college PR. While I’m so grateful to all of the mentors that helped guide me along the way, there really is nothing that can prepare you for a job in communications than actually experiencing it for yourself. And experience I did.
College PR is:
- Fundamental – College is super important for learning those fundamentals that you need to be successful in future endeavors. It begins to prepare you for real-world situations.
- Safe – You’re learning the basic skills you need to communicate effectively in a safe environment where you know you can always turn to your professor or advisor for guidance and you can take your time, to an extent.
- Structured – College PR has specific parameters to follow set by professors. Real world PR is full of fly-by-the-seat of your pants moments.
Real World PR is:
- All-Encompassing – In college you might write a press release or two, learn various writing styles and maybe have the chance to make a media list if you’re really lucky, but when I came to Konnect I had never actually pitched, created media lists or had face-to-face client interaction. It has been quite a ride so far.
- Fast-Paced – There’s a sense of urgency in real-world PR that is unlike anything else. Meeting deadlines, knowing when the best time to pitch is and making sure that a client has everything they need before they need it is expected.
- Fun – Okay, so this one goes for both, but there’s nothing quite like landing your first big hit and being able to say, “Yeah, I did that!”, or having colleagues who have been in your shoes before to help you along the way. My Konnect family is some of the most supportive people I’ve ever met.
College directs you down the right path to get started on a career in Public Relations, but it’s actually experiencing life for yourself that enables you to be amazing at your job. Go for as many internships and join as many organizations as possible so you will have an excellent portfolio to show potential employers and that incomparable real world experience.