Although the PRSSA/PRSA Relationship is a two-way street, you should take the initiative to make contact and enhance this connection. There are endless ways to make the relationship successful and beneficial for both Chapters. Follow this outline to help form and maintain this relationship:
1. CONTACT your sponsoring PRSA Chapter. Try finding their website, Facebook page, Twitter account or YouTube channel. Students aren’t the only ones who use social media to connect. If you’re not sure which PRSA Chapter sponsors your Chapter, contact vice president of professional development Therese Kuster or Headquarters to find out.
2. CONNECT with the Chapter through a variety of events. Try attending each other’s meetings, using Skype if distance is an issue. Also consider a job shadowing day, mentoring program, internship program, Tweet-Ups, luncheons or speed-networking .
3. COORDINATE these events yourself; don’t rely on the PRSA Chapter to do all the work. Event planning is a part of public relations so use this as an opportunity to practice. If your Chapter doesn’t have the resources to plan something big, simply invite PRSA members to an existing event like a general meeting or awards banquet.
4. CONTINUE this relationship beyond one or two interactions. It may be up to you to follow up on e‑mails and phone calls; e‑mails can get buried in a busy professional’s inbox. Your sponsoring PRSA Chapter is a built-in resource and the professionals are generally willing to help. Someday you’ll be joining them in the professional world so this relationship is important to them as well.
5. CAPITALIZE on what PRSA offers to PRSSA members. Not only does PRSA offer financial support for scholarships each year, but your membership to PRSSA also entitles you to a variety of other benefits. PRSA hosts podcasts , a blog and a monthly newspaper, PR Tactics, that’s sent to your Chapter. PRSA also hosts a variety of webinars and other events to which you can receive discounted rates. Networking opportunities and access to the Anvil Award Case Studies are helpful as well.
The relationship between your PRSSA Chapter and sponsoring PRSA Chapter is everything you make it. You will reap the rewards from connecting with your PRSA Chapter. What have you done to connect with your sponsoring PRSA Chapter?
For those of you attending National Conference: The PRSA Diversity Committee invites you to attend the joint “Unity Mixer” 6:30–8:30 p.m., Saturday, Oct. 16, at the Black Fox Lounge.
This is a guest post from Vice President of Professional Development Therese Kuster.