The Diversity Conversation Doesn’t End at Work

There is beauty and strength in diversity. As author C. Joybell C. once said, “We are all equal in the fact that we are all different. We are all the same in the fact that we will never be the same. We are united by the reality that all colors and all cultures are distinct and individual.” When one truly embraces the beauty of diversity, especially in the workplace, the benefits and rewards can be unbelievable.

JoLena at her internship at BBR Creative.

JoLena at her internship at BBR Creative.

Diversity in Action

I currently see diversity in action at the creative advertising agency I intern at called BBR Creative. BBR is run by three phenomenal women who are such huge inspirations to every employee that works there. I truly admire the confidence and expertise these ladies possess. The three partners are incredibly unique and distinct individuals, and they wholeheartedly respect, appreciate and celebrate each other’s differences. The BBR partners understand the significance and importance of having a diverse workplace, and they are reaping the benefits.

As an intern, I find that BBR has an amazing culture and I truly believe it is due to the diversity the agency embraces. Diversity is important because everybody has a story. Everybody has a reason that motivates him or her to succeed. By embracing diversity, BBR has chosen to embrace a variety of skills, talents and techniques. It is important to remember that diversity focuses on a broader set of qualities than just race and gender. According to the Human Resources and Equal Opportunity Office, diversity means “creating a workplace that respects and includes differences, recognizing the unique contributions that individuals with many types of differences can make and creating a work environment that maximizes the potential of all employees.” BBR has done an amazing job embracing diversity. And after experiencing the agency’s unique and diverse culture, I know it is imperative I work for a company that prides itself on valuing diversity.

Diversity at Home

Personally, my determination and will to succeed was instilled in me by my two beloved parents. My parents were both products of a poor, working class family and they worked hard to achieve their current status as a solid upper-middle-class family. My parents shared with me how they embraced their diverse  skills and used them to their advantage in order to succeed in life. My parents are truly an inspiration as they have instilled the characteristics of hard work and dedication in me and have taught me that one can accomplish whatever he or she sets his or her mind to.

Diversity Every Day

I am a firm believer that education is the key to success. I have worked hard to be the first person in my family to attend college, to be a member of the Louisiana State University Ogden Honors College, to maintain a 4.0 GPA and to study abroad in the United Kingdom. I am a determined, dedicated and focused student who is continuously striving for success. As an aspiring African-American female public relations professional, I am taking advantage of all opportunities made available to me to develop my diverse set of skills, talents and techniques. I know there are no secrets to success. It is the result of preparation, hard work, loyalty and perseverance. I am confident in my ability to succeed in the field of public relations, and I am excited for what the future has in store for me.

JoLena Ann Broussard is a Louisiana State University (LSU) Ogden Honors College senior majoring in mass communication with a concentration in public relations and double minoring in business administration and leadership development. JoLena was awarded the PRSA Diversity Multicultural Scholarship and the Stephen D. Pisinski Memorial Scholarship at the PRSSA 2014 National Conference in Washington, D.C. She is currently the public relations intern at BBR Creative in Lafayette, La. and the co-director of ImPRint Communications, PRSSA at LSU’s nationally affiliated student-run public relations firm. Connect with her on Twitter @jolenaa_ann.

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