#WhyPR: Keep it Green and Follow Your Dreams

BY: BRITTANY O’CONNELL

When I attended my first Public Relations Student Society of America meeting at the University of Delaware, I knew Public Relations was a career I could envision myself in. Prior to college, I had absolutely no idea what the profession even was. Actually, I’ve come to find that the definition of PR is still a little fuzzy depending on who you ask. That’s why, before I continued perusing my dream of PR professionalism, I wanted to make sure my hobbies and values were able to be incorporated into the field. Luckily, my research was reassuring. There are SO many different aspects to Public Relations that I’m convinced almost any hobby people adore can be included in some way.

Something very important to me is the environment and driven people doing things for a good cause. (I can’t act like this has always been a core value of mine, but rather it is a passion I recently discovered after taking a breadth course at school. Thanks, Animal Food Science!)  I didn’t want to ignore a lifestyle I came to love on my journey to a PR career. That’s when I discovered the world of Non-Profit Public Relations. Yes… environmental PR is a real thing!
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Helping others while doing what I love? Just the thought put me in a state of pure bliss. With this new information under my belt I landed a summer internship at an environmental non-profit called Grow It Green Morristown. Days can be spent doing various PR and Marketing practices, and then lead to staff meetings at a picnic table in the middle of our Urban Farm! It’s the perfect mix of behind-the-computer and outdoors. Our building is shared with other local non-profits and everyone is friendly, knowledgeable, and wants to change the world for the better. It’s pretty awesome.
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Doing PR for non-profits, specifically in the environmental sector, typically focuses on how to best present the mission and goals of the organization to the public. You must keep people well-informed about the continuing importance of the non-profit’s work in order to stay in the public sphere. This may include media campaigns, a lot of research and analyzing demographics and the environment, writing press releases, possibly obtaining grants and other forms of funding, and much more. Every day is something different and exciting.
There is a sector of PR for almost everything. Where there is a brand in need of increasing their awareness and improving reputation, there is a PR job. In the future, I hope to continue non-profit Public Relations before exploring all of the different sectors available to me.
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Brittany O’Connell is a rising junior at the University of Delaware. She is a Social Media and Marketing intern at UD’s Career Services and the PR Director for PRSSA-UD. She is also a Social Media Ambassador at the University of Delaware… follow her account @BlueHenBrittany!
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