PRSA Student Shadow Day

FIG hosted University of Northern Colorado student, Austin Pond, as part of the Public Relations Society of America’s Shadow Day. We’re thrilled to have Austin as a guest blogger this week to talk about his experience.

My PRSA Shadow Day started at 9:30 in Denver. I drove from my sister’s house in Wash Park to the Denver office of the Fresh Ideas Group, also known, by those on the inside, as FIG. The Denver office of FIG is located in the Green Spaces co-share on Walnut Street. An unassuming façade of the Green Spaces building masks the complexity of the inner-workings of the offices. Upon entry, one can see the many different niches of the office building. Each cubicle-esque area is occupied by professionals from unique industries. Nestled in a back corner of the building lies the single office filled by two FIG team members who work remotely from this location.

FIG works mainly with food industry clients focused on the sustainability of their sources. And it was great luck that I was paired with a host agency that shared my interest in food sustainability and organics.

I met Glenda and Emily, my FIG hosts, and, after a handshake and some background information, we got right down to business. I learned about their clients and how they each got into the industry. After asking why they each come to work every day, I discovered the passion these two carry with them into the office every day. They love the work they do and they know exactly how to do it. It was inspiring to see that people can still have a career they’re passionate about.

A couple hours later, we left for the PRSA luncheon and got to partake in a roundtable with some local journalists. The emphasis of the roundtable was for PR professionals to learn different and effective ways to pitch journalists. It was really eye opening, because the way to pitch a story to a newspaper reporter wasn’t the same way to pitch a TV reporter. There was one thing that really stuck with me most. It’s important to remember that when pitching a story to a journalist, one has to keep the journalist’s time in mind. A journalist isn’t going to ignore their deadline to talk with a PR person who is meandering around a story. PR professionals must have as many details as possible at the time and pitch the story in a timely manner.

PRSA Shadow Day was a great experience. I got to learn the day-to-day operations of some employees. I got to learn the passion with which PR professionals work. I got to experience the business for a day. I highly recommend Shadow Day for any student that is looking into a career in PR.