Friday, April 24, 2015

Managing Your Time And Stress As The Year Wraps Up

Spring semester finals have always been rough. The weather is warming up outside, and no one has any desire to dedicate time to studying. No time spent studying means stressing over feeling unprepared for finals, which, for me means wanting to relax and just watch some Netflix. That means I’m not studying and I’m feeling even more stressed. It becomes a viscous circle and we’ve all been there.

Luckily, a quick search on Google can you give you plethora of tips and tricks for managing time and stress. These are some of my personal favorites.

Schedule a time to study
This doesn’t mean just thinking to yourself that you can study for an hour at some point later, maybe. Write it down in your planner, put it on your calendar on your phone, set an alarm on your laptop. When you take the time to plan out a study schedule, you’re guaranteeing you’ll have enough time to devote to each exam. You’ll also have a way to hold yourself accountable.

Set up a strictly-work space
Trying to study in bed can wreak havoc your work goals. Since you’re already lounging in bed, it can make it easy to get distracted. On top of that, working in a space that’s meant to be a relaxing place for you can mess with your sleep schedule and stress levels. If you’re lucky enough to have the space where you live, try and choose a small area to get work done outside of your room. If not, head over to the library or the Tech center where you're forced to focus on work.

Take a break
Trying to run on all cylinders for the next week or so will burn you out. All the studying in the world won’t help if you’re so stressed you can’t think straight. So give yourself a break and do something you enjoy, whether it’s running or painting or heading to the coffee shop. Schedule it in after your study time if you have to. I’d recommend avoiding Netflix though. That Auto Playback will get you every time. 

This guest blog post was written by PRowl staff member Helena Wilcox.

Thursday, April 23, 2015

Five Benefits Of Informational Interviews

As PR student, we are eager to learn and do as much as we can to learn about the business and make real world connections. An easy way to get the ball rolling is to have an informational interview.  On April 1, 2015 I went to a networking event hosted by the Philadelphia Public Relation Association (PPRA) and Temple University’s chapter of the Public Relations Student Society of America (PRSSA). The event was appropriately named Careers 101: Your Career is Not a Joke.  

I am usually not lucky but that night I just happened to have won a raffle for an informational interview with Jade Barnes, head of Marketing and Events at Shops at Liberty Place. I have never thought of conducting an informational interview but it was the best thing I could have done. I have learned some helpful tips in the process that I would like to share with you. Below are five benefits to having an informational interview:

Brush Up On Your Research Skills: Find professionals in the field that are doing what you want to do. Follow their professional journey on LinkedIn. Look into clubs and organization that they are connected with. By doing the research, you can ask the questions you want the answers to. You also want to know whom you are interviewing.

Practice Your Presentation: The informational interview, emails and thank you letter are all a reflection of you. Contact individuals in your field with professional emails. When it is time for the interview, dress the part. Show personality and interest by sending a hand written thank you letter immediately after the interview.

Write Notes and Read Them: It is great to talk to a seasoned professional but you want to utilize their advice. A great way to do that is by writing downing their most striking responses. This way you have compiled a helpful list to look back on while you build your career.

Network Network Network: We hear in school that networking is important. By having an informational interview you have the opportunity to network with the best resource a PR professional. This is your chance to make a connection and ask them to suggest other professionals to reach out to for more advice.

Internship or Job Opportunities: It does not hurt to bring a copy of your resume with you into these interviews. By simply asking, “What are you looking for in a new hire” or “What internships does your company offer” can lead to a conversation you want to have. Keep in mind; if you are networking, they can suggest other companies that would be a good fit for you.

This guest blog post was written by PRowl staff member Obioma Oguekwe.

Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Phone Interviews 101

It’s crucial to impress an employer during an interview.  You’ll arrive in polished clothes, greet the interviewer with a firm handshake, and hand him or her your perfected resume.  However, if you’re scheduled for a phone interview, it eliminates the physical interaction.  How will you make a good impression now?  Although phone interviews may seem informal, you’ll be at the relaxation of your own home.  Here are some tips to ace your phone interview and impress your potential employer:

Keep notes in front of you.  You should always do your homework and learn about the background of the company you applied for.  Luckily, you will be able to keep that information out in front of you as a “cheat sheet” during the interview.  Other notes to have available may include: concerns you may have, answers to common questions or key points to mention.

Speak clearly.  Since the interviewer cannot see you, he or she will be concentrating on your communication skills.  It’s important to speak slowly, pronounce words correctly and avoid fillers such as “um” and “like” because speaking mistakes are more evident during a phone interview.  Also, speak with enthusiasm to show personality and passion!

Focus on the interview.  Although you’ll be at the comfort of your home, it will be easier to become distracted.  Make sure your phone interview is in a quiet environment where you receive good cell phone reception.

Listen closely.  Facial expressions can indicate what an employer is thinking of you.  However, it’s hard to sense his or her perception of you over the phone.  If you carefully listen to the employer’s verbal responses during the interview, you may have a better chance of knowing what he or she is thinking. For example, does he/she sound bored?  Surprised?  Curious?

Contact information.  Since you cannot swap business cards after the interview, make sure you receive the employer’s alternative contact information, such as an address or email, to send a follow-up.  Also, make sure he or she has all of your contact information too.

This guest blog post was written by PRowl staff member Kimberly Leung.

Sunday, April 19, 2015

Making The Transition From PR Student To PR Pro

It can be challenging to make the leap from college student to working professional. As a public relations student, you have the knowledge and skill set to take on a variety of positions in virtually any industry. By making slight moves in the right direction and considering your greatest goals, the transition can be a lot less daunting.  

Prep your Plan
Begin to set goals that will guide your career path. It’s important to relish in your new-grad bliss, but always be thinking about your next move. Your first job will rarely be your last. Consider the smaller steps you can take that will lead you in the direction of what your ultimately want to achieve in your professional life.

Keen on Connections
Keeping in touch with colleagues, professors, and supervisors is always a good idea. Connect on LinkedIn, follow each other on social media, or grab coffee every once in a while. Networking can be half the battle; it’s consistency that keeps a professional relationship healthy.

Organized, Nationwide
Your involvement in student organizations doesn’t have to end with graduation. You can continue your participation by joining nationally affiliated associations or local organizations. Make the move from PRSSA to PRSA (you can begin your PRSA membership up to five months before you graduate). Check out a local event hosted by PPRA, Philadelphia’s premier public relations association. These organizations provide you with valuable resources and tools to broaden your network and further your industry knowledge.

Alumni Associations
Stay involved with your alma mater! Alumni associations are a great way to keep up to date with your school, meet new people, and further your industry knowledge. Post-grad organizations offer excellent resources and opportunities, not to mention the wealth of knowledge that comes along with knowing fellow alumni from various industries, locations, and generations. Temple, specifically, has a variety of regional chapters and alumni societies.

For more information, visit

Never Stop Learning
Accept a position that allows you to grow as an individual. Increase your industry knowledge by attending conferences, taking workshops, or completing online tutorials. Volunteering for a non-profit or interning for a company within your field will allow you to gain industry experience and insights. A degree is just the beginning of what could be a life-long education.  

This guest blog post was written by PRowl staff member Jacqueline Stroeber.

Saturday, April 18, 2015

Landing Your Internship 101

Brace yourselves. It’s internship crunch season. It’s officially that time of year when if you haven’t secured a summer internship yet, you might be panicking.  Do not panic. Here’s what you need to know when you’re trying to land that internship. 

(Source: Getty Images)

Fix your resume 
One of the worst things you can do is submit a resume that has typos, or doesn’t reflect your prior experience. Take your resume to a career center and have it looked over by professionals. Make sure all relevant experiences are included on your resume.

Use online job and internship databases 
Sometimes finding internships can be hard. Many companies utilize online databases to post job openings and internship opportunities. The more databases you use, the better chance you have of finding an internship that suits you that you qualify for.

Apply for multiple opportunities
Rather than putting all of your eggs in one basket, apply for more than one opportunity. That way if your don’t get your dream internship you’re not left scrambling to find what opportunities are left.

Learn to use the programs you see listed under requirements even if you don’t get that internship
The programs that companies list as necessary for their internship may come in handy in another internship or a future job. Your knowledge of the programs could turn out to be a benefit that makes you more desirable to another company or put you a step ahead of other interns.

Dress professionally for any interviews
Looking well put together and professional can never work against you, only in your favor.

Prepare and rehearse for interviews
You will be some much more confident if you know what you want to say about yourself ahead of time. Practice answering questions that may throw you off guard. Practice active listening. Just make sure you feel ready and have an air of confidence about you.

Don’t get discouraged if not all of them contact you for an interview
Not everyone will get the internship they want the most. The best thing that you can do is never give up and keep searching until you land one.

And don’t just take the internship that pays the most. Choose the one that has the potential to best prepare you for your future. Remember that internships can be stepping-stones.  

This guest blog post was written by PRowl staff member Simone Brownlee.

Thursday, April 16, 2015

Wrapping Up Your Internship

As the semester comes to an end, you’re likely beginning end of semester projects and thinking about finals (or procrastinating on thinking about finals). But classes aren't the only things you need to consider finalizing this month. Unless you plan on continuing into the summer, your internship is also close to ending. So here are just a few things you should check off your intern to-do list before heading out of the office one last time.
  • Wrap up projects. If you've been given any long-term projects to work on for the semester, begin finalizing them. Whether it’s a master media list or research assignment, put on the finishing touches before sending it over to your supervisor. Go through old to-do lists and notes from the last few weeks to ensure everything has been completed and crossed off. This way, you know for sure there are no longstanding projects uncompleted.
  •  Collect your portfolio pieces. Go through all the assignments you've done over the semester and decide which are best for your portfolio. Be sure to save pieces that demonstrate a variation of work that you've done over the course of your internship. This is also a good time to update your resume to reflect what you accomplished.
  • Get connected. If you haven’t already, connect on LinkedIn with your supervisors, fellow interns and other members of the office you have worked closely with. This way, your LinkedIn network can reflect your newly extended in-person network. It also allows your supervisors to write recommendations and endorse you for skills you learned during your internship.
  • Don’t forget to say thank you! The final and most important step to take at the end of your internship is to write thank you cards (by hand, the old school way) for your supervisors and bosses. Be sure to include what you learned from working with them and your plans to stay in touch. Small thank you gifts don’t hurt either. Who doesn't need a nice Temple coffee mug?

Tuesday, April 14, 2015

Say Hello to PRowl's New Leaders

Over the weekend, PRowl Public Relations held a leadership retreat for all of our newly selected leaders. The incoming Firm Director, current Firm Director, and current Executive Board led a presentation on PRowl's policies and future. 

Leadership retreat is important for the transition and understanding of one's new role in the firm. Additionally, the retreat is an excellent way for our firm to receive feedback from those who are members, and efficiently execute the ideas they have for the growth of the firm.

(Source:Tiny HR)
PRowl's 2015-2016 Executive Board:
Alyssa Guckin, Firm Director
Rute Barkai, Assistant Firm Director
Faiz Mandviwalla, Assistant Firm Director
Maggie Wurst, Assistant Firm Director
Helena Wilcox, Director of Public Relations
Gabrielle Lacherza, Director of Finance
Shaun Luberski, Secretary

PRowl's 2015-2016 Account Executives:
Kelly Armstrong
Christina Clemence
Rene Cosides
Janelle Grace
Megan Healy
Hannah Litchfield, Junior AE
Olivia Noble

The new Executive Board will have its first task in two weeks - interviewing and hiring new staff members for the Fall semester! Email to set up an interview on April 27, 28, or 29. Applicants will need to provide a resume and writing sample upon interviewing.