Biersach runs for National PRSSA committee, increases awareness of UWO

1 05 2017

Brianna Colebourne    By Brianna Colebourne

University of Wisconsin Oshkosh journalism student Katie Biersach ran for a National PRSSA committee position and increased awareness of the UW Oshkosh Public Relations Student Society of America chapter and the journalism department as a whole.

Biersach, a junior majoring in public relations with a minor in Radio-TV-Film, traveled to Seattle from March 30- April 2 to run for the vice president of career services position, which entails managing the PRSSA Internship Center, planning events for Career Development Month, increasing champions for PRSSA’s presence in the society, and much more.

Katie Biersach image

In the end, she did not receive the position, but it was an extremely valuable experience. She even ended up running for another position off the floor, which she had not prepared for at all. Biersach said, “I put my professional skills to the test and proved to myself that I can do anything I set my mind to.”

Running for those positions meant so much more than the position itself to Biersach. She used it as a way to gain experience, raise awareness about the UW Oshkosh journalism department, showcase her skills, and spread her knowledge to inspire and lead students from all across the world because she truly admires PRSSA.

Sara Steffes Hansen, faculty adviser of the Dr. Julie Henderson PRSSA chapter, helped Biersach prepare for her presentation by listening to her speech and providing constructive feedback. Hansen said: “It is quite an accomplishment for Katie to be a finalist for a National PRSSA position among a highly qualified field of candidates. We are very proud of her for reaching this level, and further putting UWO and the Department of Journalism on the national stage.”

Biersach, who will graduate in May 2018, is president of the UW Oshkosh PRSSA chapter and has served on its executive board for two years. Biersach also will be the 2017-2018 Promotions Director for Titan TV and is currently a part of Reeve Union Board.

In the past, she was a news reporter for the Advance-Titan, the communications director for Fletcher Hall Government, production member for Titan TV and a news reporter on 90.3 WRST.

 

 

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Organ Donor Awareness Campaign Kicks off at UW Oshkosh

24 04 2017

Abby Reich  By Abby Reich @missabbyrae23

The UW Oshkosh Dr. Julie Henderson Public Relations Student Society of America chapter started its Blooming Lives campaign for the National Organ Donor Awareness Competition on April 13, and they are already “blooming with joy.”

The PRSSA chapter at Rowan University sponsors the competition. The founder of the chapter received a life-saving kidney transplant from his sister, so the chapter created the annual PRSSA competition for other chapters to gain experience in event planning and to bring awareness to organ donation.

The Oshkosh chapter has been planning its campaign since February, and their events will kick off at the end of April. Their campaign has two main components: the Blooming Lives flower drive, which will be held 10 a.m.- 3 p.m. April 27 in Reeve Memorial Union, and a campus-wide planting event on April 29.

Ashley Larson          Working on Campaign

Carissa Brzezinski, the vice president of events for UW Oshkosh’s PRSSA chapter, is leading the campaign. “This campaign is a reflection of our chapter, not just me,” she said. “I want everyone to feel involved throughout the entire process and to feel proud of all the work we have done.”

Brzezinski also came up with the concept of flowers for the campaign. When she was thinking about the campaign, she kept coming back to the idea that NODAC is always held in the spring. She said, “There’s something about the springtime and new life … and that serves organ donation and the new life that it creates, as well.” Members brainstormed the chapter’s name for the campaign, “Blooming Lives” for organ donation, during a chapter meeting.

Blooming Lives Banner

One of the great things about the flower drive is that there will be no charge for the pansies. The flowers will be free to anyone who is a registered organ donor, signs up to become an organ donor or learns more about organ donation at their booth on April 27.

According to Brzezinski, “The goal of the flower drive is to focus on the positive benefits of donation and to celebrate those who are already donors and those who want to learn more and possibly become donors.”

After the flower drive, the chapter will plant 300 pansies on campus in partnership with the university on April 27. The chapter chose orange pansies to create a visual and long-lasting awareness on campus for organ donation. Brzezinski said, “Like organ donation itself, planting these flowers not only benefits the cause, but our campus community as well.” The pansies will be planted in beds on the front side of Kolf, Horizon, Dempsey and the power plant.

The Oshkosh chapter has a long history participating in NODAC starting in 1997 when the competition began. They also have a long history of success. In the last 10 years alone, they have received two firsts, two seconds, and two honorable mentions. Its members are grateful to be able to apply the skills they have learned in the classroom with their peers and colleagues for a very worthy cause.

“Blooming Lives is an honest and genuine campaign focused on bringing even more positivity and grace to the conversation around organ donation,” Brzezinski said. The chapter’s goal is to increase awareness of organ donation, and they hope that the campus community will take part in the Blooming Lives events.

The chapter will learn the results of the competition in May. Winning chapters will be recognized and will receive their awards at the PRSSA National Conference in October 2017.





Advance-Titan 2016-2017 Awards and Achievements

31 03 2017

@Christina Basken (@ChristinaBasken)

AT
(In order top left to bottom right)

Morgan Van Lanen-Head Sports Editor, Austin Walther-Social Media Manager, Alex Nemec-Head News Editor, Mike Johrendt-Assistant Sports Editor, Ti Windisch-Managing Editor, Garrett Wright-Copy Desk Chief, Alyssa Grove-Campus Connections Editor, Kurt Ness-Web Manager, Trevor Hurst-Copy Desk Editor, Nicole Horner-Opinion Editor, Emily Fredrick-Head Photo Editor, Laura Dickinson- Assistant News Editor, Jessica Johnson-Editor-In-Chief, Haley Lentz-Advertising Manager. Not pictured: Alicia Kahl-Assistant Photo Editor.

 

The UW-Oshkosh Advance-Titan Student Newspaper staff headed to Madison on Feb. 23 to compete in the Wisconsin College Media Association Contest.

During this event, former Editor-In-Chief Katie Knox won first place best news reporting on a piece she wrote about a tattoo project that shed light on mental illness.

“Her piece actually started out as an assignment for my class, but it was so good that we wanted to feature it in the A-T,” said Vincent Filak, adviser of The Advance-Titan.

In addition to this award, reporter Erik Buchinger won first place best sports reporting on his story of UWO quarterback Brett Kasper connecting with his bone marrow transplant recipient, Phoenix Bridegroom.

“It was a huge success for Katie and Erik. I am very proud of both of them,” said Filak.

During fall 2016 semester members of the A-T celebrated a huge win in DC at the Associated Collegiate Press National College Media Convention.

The A-T team submitted their website in a large-scale competition for “best website design and content” among 30 other universities.

“We were all exhausted as we landed in Chicago, but when news hit we found our second wind and celebrated the accomplishment,” said Filak. “It was a pretty big deal for us. We competed on the large scale meaning that we went up against colleges with four times the population and budget, some even with their own web divisions.”

When asked what the biggest contributions were leading up to this victory, Jessica Johnson, the Editor-in-Chief of the Advance-Titan had this to say, “We owe a lot to Kurt Ness. He single-handedly switched our entire operating system over to WordPress, taking advice from all of us along the way making it feel like a real team effort. The website is faster, more reliable, much more user-friendly and visually pleasing.”

The advisor of the paper stated, “We won the award because of the overall website layout and content; reporting, writing and photography. It was especially gratifying to win the award because the judge for this particular entry is very well-known in the community of Journalism as being a very hard critic and I respect him very much,” Filak said.  

A new feature of the website is a section, located under the “report news” tab, where students can submit ideas and feedback on what gets posted.

Looking to the future, the goal of the Advance-Titan is to increase readership and make the student body here at UWO feel more connected to the paper and provide a place for their voices to be heard.





Networking Your Way to Your Dream Job…

3 03 2017

By Christina Basken (@ChristinaBasken)

Networking can be an excellent way to reach out, get your name out there, land your dream job and perhaps even come across an opportunity you’ve never even thought of exploring! A few of our journalism students have had great success with networking. Read about their stories, tips and advice here.

Mackenna Erdmann, a senior at UWO studying Public Relations and Journalism

Through networking, Erdmann has had the chance to work for exciting organizations such as 95.9 Kiss FM, the Wisconsin Timber Rattlers, the Milwaukee Bucks, the Walt Disney World Company, the CMA’s and the Green Bay Packers.

“One of the experiences that changed my life in many ways was GRAMMY Camp”, Erdmann said. “My mom heard about the opportunity and we put together an audition tape to submit. After weeks of waiting, I was chosen as one of 30 kids to participate in the week long camp in New York City. I spent time with industry professionals who opened my eyes to the entertainment industry as a whole and inspired me to work hard to get where I want to be. Among those people, I met my friend Josh who happened to be from Nashville. After telling him about my passion for singing and country music, he didn’t hesitate to invite me to work the CMA Awards. A couple years later, he called me and asked if I would come down for the week of the show. Without hesitation, I packed my bags and headed to Music City. The first year, I started out driving golf carts, but as I started talking with people and ‘selling myself,’ I was eventually moved inside where I work directly with all the country artists and talent who are a part of the show both during rehearsal week and the show itself. I moved my way up and this past November, I had the honor of working with Brad Paisley. If I hadn’t expanded my network both at GRAMMY Camp and the CMA’s, I would have never gotten the opportunity to do what I am doing today.”

-Advice

“If I had to leave you with advice, it would be this: be comfortable being uncomfortable and get as much experience as you possibly can,” Erdmann said. “What I mean by ‘be comfortable being uncomfortable’ is there are going to be a lot of times where you may not feel comfortable talking to someone and trying to sell yourself. DO IT. You never know who you are talking to or where that conversation could go.”

Katie Biersach, a junior at UWO majoring in PR with a minor in RTF

Biersach has discovered many networking opportunities through PRSSA and at the National and Regional Conferences. Being a member of the chapter allows Biersach to take advantage of professional networking events and experiences with practitioners in the industry. She also has opportunities to network with students from across the world to learn about their chapters..

-Advice

“Take a leap of faith and network with professionals on LinkedIn that work for companies that you want to intern or work at in the future,” Biersach said. “Take advantage of on-campus events to network with professionals. Join a club or organization relating to your major or minor and network with students in that group. Talk to your professors and ask for advice when applying for an internship. Do not be afraid to ask someone to take a second look at your application materials. Internships will not come to you. If you want the internship bad enough, you will do everything you can to make your application the best.”

Rachel Boudreau, a recent graduate from UWO majoring in Journalism with an emphasis in public relations “– now working as a content specialist at DealerSocket

Boudreau, on the other hand, has had many networking opportunities through being involved in her sorority. Taking leadership positions has allowed her to meet and network with campus professionals, and peers from across the country at conferences. She has also had networking opportunities through professors in her journalism classes, and with her involvement with PRSSA.

“These opportunities have influenced my career path because talking to people in a new area of PR that I haven’t yet explored, or talking to other motivated students, helps me become more motivated and curious about future career opportunities,” Boudreau said. “My experiences in college have given me a drive to always push forward and to forge my own path in my career.”

-Advice

Boudreau states, “Get involved! I can’t express enough how important it is to be involved in a variety of organizations on campus, both within and outside of your major. Talk to classmates, professors, friends, family, everyone you possibly can about what you want to do with your life because you never know where an opportunity might pop up. Be open to trying new things. You might have an internship opportunity that you don’t think fits into exactly what you want to do, but never turn away an experience.”

 
Resources

How to find out about networking conferences going on around campus? Download the UWO Handshake app and get connected with clubs and organizations on campus! Also check out these great monthly networking conferences held at The Lambeau Field and Oshkosh area to interact with over 50 companies to land your dream job!

 





Advance-Titan Surpasses Challenge Grant Goal

21 03 2016

By Catie Schultz (@CatieSchultz17)

The goal seemed so far away to Advance-Titan Faculty Adviser Vince Filak and the rest of the A-T staff. But they did it. The A-T met a challenge grant goal, exceeding expectations, with $104,000 to pay off deficit spending from the late 2000s.

“Meeting the goal was the greatest thing that happened,” Filak said. “You start to chip away and chip away at that big number and the money starts to climb up to three, then four and then five figures. We didn’t think we were going to get there, but it’s been a great feeling meeting the goal.”

After meeting with various groups on campus, the A-T originally set out to raise $5,000 by Feb. 1. However, the A-T was approached by Barbara Beuscher, the Director of Development for the College of Letters and Science, with an offer the A-T couldn’t refuse. A donor approached the University with a $50,000, dollar-for-dollar match challenge grant that would allow the A-T to retire their debt. However, they only had 100 days to raise the funds.

“It was a big group effort with lots of handshakes, phone calls, lunches and meetings with people,” Filak said. “It was wonderful to see alumni and other people that value the A-T donate what they could”.

Not only will the funds put the paper on firm financial footing, but Filak hopes to use that money to expand experience opportunities that A-T staff members wouldn’t necessarily have had before this opportunity.

“We now have the ability to send students to conferences, to Washington D.C. to cover the Presidential election race or to cover the Stagg Bowl and not have to worry about how we are going to get the money to cover simple things,” Filak said. “Having more real-life experience is going to help these students. This is where your passion can get you.”

Congratulations to the A-T!





‘Fall’ Into Department Clubs

18 09 2015

By Carissa Brzezinski (@CJBrzezinski)

Welcome back, everyone! As the new school year gets underway, so do student organizations. If you’re worried that it’s too late to join, don’t be! Our department offers four unique clubs and the student newspaper to help you get the most out of your journalism experience.

For students interested in advertising, check out Ad Club. Led by President Billy Hadley, Ad Club meets on Wednesdays at 5:30 p.m. in Sage 3412. You can learn more about the club on Facebook and Twitter.

Newly renamed as The Dr. Julie Henderson Public Relations Student Society of America at the University of Wisconsin Oshkosh (PRSSA) is for students interested in public relations, the management of relationships between organizations and their publics. PRSSA is led by President Megan Klamrowski and meets on Thursdays at 5 p.m. in Sage 3412. Students can look at past projects on their blog, Facebook, and Twitter.

Students who have an interest in broadcasting or an emphasis in writing/editing are encouraged to join the Society of Professional Journalists (SPJ). Led by President Elizabeth Pletzer, SPJ meets on Tuesdays at 4:30 p.m. in Sage 3408. Students can learn more on its Twitter.

If you would like the opportunity to hone your reporting, writing, or editing skills, join the student newspaper The Advance-Titan. The A-T is led by Editor-in-Chief Katie Knox, who you should contact if you are interested in a position. Even though production night is on Wednesdays, work is being done throughout the entire week. Students can learn more on its website, Facebook, or Twitter.

Interested in photography? Photo Club welcomes students to explore their creative talents while sharpening photography skills. First meeting to be held Thursday, Sept. 24 at 4:30 p.m. in Sage 3420.Meet other students who love photography, learn about photo outings and competitions. We will also take suggestions for guest speakers. Email Haley Walters at walteh07@uwosh.edu if you have any questions. Students can check the club’s Facebook and Twitter for updates.





Welcome to Sarajevo

3 03 2015

Professor Miles Maguire and Fulbright Scholar Mirza Mehmedovic are hosting a screening of Welcome to Sarajevo on Wednesday at 7 p.m. in Sage 1210.

welcome to sarajevo

The movie is about a U.S. journalist in the 1990’s who tried to report the brutality he had seen in the Bosnian war zone. The film will be introduced by Mehmedovic, a Bosnian native, and will be followed up with a talkback session.

“I will probably say a few words about my experience at war because even if I was a child at that time, I remember a lot of things from war and I believe it should be the mission of the people who were in war zones to tell the people,” Mehmedovic said. “I really think it is something terrible, the most terrible thing that could happen to any human being.”

Mehmedovic said the film will be interesting to students who don’t know about the Bosnian war so they can see what happened and how things changed.

“It might be an interesting story to show how silly war in Bosnia was and how terrible it was and how difficult for journalists not from Bosnia it was to understand what was actually happening in Bosnia,” Mehmedovic said. “Because any war is very stupid war. It’s a quite universal story that can be applicable to anywhere in the world.”

The Bosnian war started in 1992 when some countries, Bosnia included, wanted to leave communism and become a democratic country.

According to Mehmedovic, this film took footage of the actual war zone from foreign journalists to use in the film instead of recreating the scenes of killed and wounded as in Hollywood.

“Some of the scenes in that movie are original scenes made right from war, they’re not movie scenes,” Mehmedovic said. “It looks terrible but I think it’s good they used [those] kind of scenes in the movie because that’s the way to show what was actually happening there. Not just Hollywood movie scenes, those are real scenes of real people wounded by grenades in Sarajevo.”

The movie night is being sponsored by the Department of Journalism, Photo Club, UWO History Club, English Club, University Honors Student Association and the UW Oshkosh chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists.