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PRSE students

Public Relations and Social Engagement

Overview

Our Public Relations and Social Engagement (PRSE) concentration provides students with real-world experience through coursework, internships, applied learning opportunities, and so much more. With faculty and staff who put students first, this concentration will provide you with a variety of skills and experiences designed to equip you to be successful in a communications career.

Because of these opportunities and experiences, PRSE students are prepared to apply their learning, resulting in many securing employment immediately upon graduation.

A one-of-a-kind program

Many PRSE courses include an applied learning emphasis and some, such as Crisis Communication, include a service learning opportunity where students serve the community while learning about public relations. PRSE focuses on preparing students for a job once they graduate. Additionally, the emphasis on internships often results in students securing employment after graduation.

To ensure students succeed, upper-level PRSE students are assigned a faculty academic advisor who helps them discover their professional passion and helps them select courses geared toward their individual career aspirations.

Hope Hale
PRSE has allowed me to manifest my passion for communications by using applied learning experiences in combination with a dynamic curriculum. During my time in the PRSE program, I enhanced my knowledge of PR policies and practices, graphic design, technical writing, video production, social media content curation, and so much more. It has broadened both my network connections and my perspective in order to make me a well-rounded and well-prepared public relations professional. My professors consistently encouraged growth and development while maintaining the highest standards in order to prepare their students for this rapidly changing industry.

Hope Hale, 2020 Alum

Program Objectives

  • Broaden your horizons by exploring different aspects of the communications field such as social networking, political communication, and organizational speaking.
  • Develop the skills needed to be successful in a variety of professions that require effective communication skills.
  • Obtain various connections through the act of social engagement and applied learning that will jumpstart your career before graduation.

Coursework Highlights

The PRSE concentration option offers several career-focused courses, such as:

Class Number Class Name
COMM 4085 Crisis Communication
COMM 3323 Political Communication
COMM 3320 Public Relations
COMM 3328 Public Relations Writing
COMM 4085 Social Media PR
COMM 4310 Computer-Mediated Communication
COMM 4320 Event Planning and Management
COMM 3325 Organizational Spokespeople
COMM 4325 Applied Public Relations & Event Planning*
COMM 4384 Communications Internship

*Note: COMM 4325 has a high-post employment rate. Students consistently have job offers before the end of the semester.

Facilities and Features

Female student preparing center pieces in PREM lab.

PREM Lab

The PREM lab, located on the third floor of the O.A. Grant Humanities building, is a unique facility that allows students to work on PR and event planning projects. It also serves as a meeting room for other departments and organizations.

Public Relations Student Society of America

PRSSA

The Public Relations Student Society of America (PRSA) founded the Public Relations Student Society of America (PRSSA) in 1967 to cultivate a favorable and mutually advantageous relationship between students and professional public relations practitioners. PRSSA members have access to benefits and resources such as networking opportunities, access to publications and communications, career resources, scholarships, internship opportunities, and more. PRSSA aspires to advance the public relations profession by developing ethically responsible pre-professionals who champion diversity, strive for an outstanding education and advocate for the profession.

Dr. Cessna Winslow

Dr. Cessna Winslow, Public Relations & Social Engagement Program Coordinator

"The Public Relations and Social Engagement concentration is designed to prepare students to be effective public relations professionals in a variety of communications-related fields—nonprofit, corporate, government, medical, political, and hospitality to name just a few. Throughout the PRSE curriculum, students learn how to handle PR crises, plan events, and create web, video, and social media content. PRSE coursework emphasizes applied learning that ensures students graduate with relevant experience to showcase in their resumes and portfolios. Our selective internship program and individualized academic advising assists students to discover their professional passion. And to wrap up their education, as part of the PRSE capstone requirements, students work with actual clients to address a communication need and begin their post-college job search resulting in students consistently having employment offers prior to and upon graduation."