It’s Handled, No Scandal

kerry-washington-olivia-popeI discovered the world of public relations while studying abroad in Lisbon, Portugal on scholarship for two weeks during the summer 2014 period. While searching for a summer internship, I came across an ad that read “Personal Assistant Needed: Will Work With High-End Celebrity Clientele”. I knew that as a rising journalist, making celebrity connections was essential to my climb to stardom as a world-renowned anchor. Little did I know, this internship would be anything but glitz and glamour.

My internship with Reinchild Public Relations was anything but rainbows, Hershey’s kisses and daffodils. However, I’d be completely lying if I said I walked away without any type of valuable experience. I learned to write press releases, media pitches and inquiries and event recaps. I also learned that I loved public relations because I like the feeling of living in the fast lane behind-the-scenes of it all. I appreciate the feeling of knowing that I got my client on the red carpet for an exclusive movie premiere at Atlantic Station with Will Packer after hours and hours of blood, sweat and phone calls to multiple people at BET and Jesse Collins Entertainment all to get one seat without a premiere. However, there’s no better feeling than seeing your client on the red carpet knowing that you did all of the work yourself to get your client to where they are. It’s like releasing your baby bird out of its cage once it has learned to fly. You know you’ve done your job and that’s all you can ask for.

As time progressed, I was promoted from personal assistant to junior publicist. Then, from junior celebrity publicist to senior celebrity publicist. This internship laid the foundation for my love for public relations, specifically in entertainment and entertainment-related fields, such as fashion, music and more. Following my internship with Reinchild Public Relations, I found myself reconsidering my career path in journalism and began to gear my focus towards a career in public relations and marketing.

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As time progressed, I began collecting more and more internship experiences under my belt for smaller companies, organizations and agencies such as Jasmine Burke Productions, LLC., HME Consulting, Inc., Echelon Twelve, and Morehouse College’s own Culturally Relevant Computing Lab. In the lab, I initially was brought onto the team as the Social Media and Public Relations Coordination. Later, I began to conduct my very own research on embodied conversational agents in a virtual module we constructed for elementary and middle school children, BullyShutdown. For a short period of time, I engaged in sports-related public relations and marketing with 4.0 Public Relations and Marketing as an on-campus internship opportunity.

At Spelman College, I have created an interdisciplinary focus in Mass Media Arts and Concentration to develop a track other than the Business Writing and Media Professional Minor that my institution has provided me with. I have served as a committed member of Spelman’s chapter of Black Public Relations Student Society and a participant in the Emerging Public Relations and Communications Professional Program in collaboration with Porter Novelli.

Where am I now? As a college student, I am preparing to graduate with a job as an account executive specializing in crisis communications, risk management, reputation management, and media relations. Included in this is introductory blog post is my Public Relations & Marketing tailored resume which  includes all of my accolades, internships, and skills. In the words of Coco Chanel, “A woman should be two things: classy and fabulous”. What’s more fabulous than a publicist who can hold her own in and out of the office?

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