Imagine receiving an award not only for something you love to do and something you are good at, but also for something pertaining to your major. Carolyn Rush, PR major and President of the Public Relations Student Society of America (PRSSA) and the Public Relations Council of Alabama (PRCA) club, experienced just this.
She was one of the five Auburn students awarded the 2012 PRCA Medallion Award. She won for the Potpourri category by submitting one of her own photographs taken while interning at the Otter Bay Company clothing company.
"I do the company's social media and pretty much have free reign on creating all the campaigns," said Rush. "I created a holiday campaign through the use of Facebook and Twitter, and one of the pictures I took for the campaign is what I submitted."
The holiday picture Rush entered was one of her favorites, as well as one of the Web's favorites. It was voted most popular on the social media sites it was shared on. Rush's creativity made her the winning candidate with her photograph of Otter Bay Company t-shirts hanging as stockings on the fireplace.
Rush has had experience with social media, not only through her internship with the Otter Bay Company, but also in her extracurriculars on campus.
Last year, Rush served as the PRSSA membership director where she was responsible for the club's social media and promotion. She created the Facebook and Twitter accounts for the club and continues to manage them today.
Although recognized as two separate organizations, nationally recognized PRSSA and locally recognized PRCA, the two have been combined into one club on Auburn's campus this year to benefit the students involved. Rush serves as the club's current president.
"Being involved in this organization has made all the difference in me enjoying my major," said Rush. "It was the best decision I made because it's a student run organization and we have lots of power to do what we want with it. We can come up with our own ideas and organize trips to Birmingham and Atlanta that I wouldn't do on my own."
The trips taken by the club open up networking opportunities for future jobs and internships for current Auburn PR students. Not only will involvement with a type of organization like the PRSSA/ PRCA club reveal future career options, but meanwhile, creates student connections within the PR major.
"Being involved in extracurricular activities is beneficial, but ultimately, you get out of it what you put into it," said Rush. "If you show up to meetings and take part in a committee, then you get real world experience. It's one thing to be involved in 20 clubs and never do anything, verses getting involved through an officer position in one or two clubs. The more you put in, the more you get out."
For more information about Auburn University's PRSSA/ PRCA club, visit their website at http://www.prssa.org/chapters/pages/display/349/Auburn_University or their Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/AuburnPR.