Choosing a major may be one of the most difficult decisions you make in college. In college you start to discover what your passions are and what you are truly good at. Some find that they enjoy mathematics and science, while others struggle with those subjects. Not to discredit those in the liberal arts, but often times liberal arts majors thrive more in their majors than a math or science based major. This is often the deciding factor that begins them to lean towards a liberal arts major. However, once you look into all the majors available there are more options than you would think.
I always knew I was good at writing and it is something I enjoy. In addition, I like to be grammatically correct and have always been successful throughout my English courses. The field of communication was drawing me in but initially I was not sure which exact major I wanted to do still within the field. Journalism is the prerequisite to Public Relations. Public Relations involves many of the skills required of a journalist and as a public relations practitioner it is good to understand the job of a journalist. Often times you will be interacting with the media and therefore it is important to be able to communicate with them on their level so they will view you as credible.
The moment I realized I made the right decision of choosing Public Relations as a major was when I started the major classes. I enjoyed learning how organizations promote themselves and communicate with the media and its publics. These are skills you learn in public relations writing such as how to write a press release or a feature story. The best part about writing for journalism and public relations is that the writing is meant to be concise and straight to the point. Therefore, you do not have to feel the need to add extra fluff to stories or pieces of writing like you would in English class. To me this makes the most sense and makes the writing easier to do. Often times when you get quotes from people for a story, the story truly writes itself.
In addition to learning the technical skills, learning about public relations case studies is always interesting. Many times case studies will be prime examples of what not to do in a situation. However, often times these public relations fails can almost be comical. Such as when Total Beauty, an online publication, mistook Whoopi Goldberg for Oprah!
Sometimes, public relations fails can be as small as an incorrect tweet however, other times they can be much more intense.
Here are some more examples of public relations fails, that have been discussed in the past. In class, we are constantly learning about the impact of public relations as they are happening.
Not all of public relations is a fail though! There have been many successful campaigns as well to take note of. Campaigns such as Dove’s Real Beauty Campaign are successful public relations campaigns to learn from.
The best part about the major public relations is that it is a major that is constantly evolving with the times. As the world becomes more digital, so does the field! You are constantly being exposed to new forms of media and technology. Some of the promotional skills you learn can help your own presence on social media and help you in the future with promoting yourself for jobs. Also, if you are in the public relations field you are never behind in the news! It is basically your job to stay up-to-date on the news and how it could affect your clients. If you find that you thrive in writing skills and have a passion for news and communication, public relations may be the perfect major for you. On top of that, there are so many different areas of public relations you can specialize in to further tailor to your own interests and passions. For example, if you enjoy sports you can go into sports media relations and if you are interested in nonprofits you can do public relations for nonprofit organizations. The sky is the limit with public relations! It is a major that anyone can find their fit in!