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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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!

 





Display Your Best Self: PRSSA Holds LinkedIn Workshop

1 03 2017

By Ashley Larson (@aelarson6)

As a senior, the real world is right around the corner. With it comes the daunting task of job (or internship) hunting. Recently, PRSSA hosted Barb Benish and Dr. Sara Steffes Hansen, who gave a LinkedIn workshop about how to use this important networking platform along with one-on-one help for attendees. Students of all skill levels met to improve their profiles or, like me, get started on the networking site.

Dr. Hansen kicked the workshop off with a video explaining why students should make a LinkedIn profile. Turns out, it’s not just for well-connected CEOs! Building a strong profile now may help you land that awesome job right after graduation.

For new users, Benish built a profile from scratch and highlighted best practices along the way. Her first tip? Make sure you have a strong résumé! It makes creating your LinkedIn profile a piece of cake.

She also pointed out the importance of a good profile picture. LinkedIn users with a quality photo are 21 times more likely to be viewed and 36 times more likely to be messaged.

Your profile summary on LinkedIn is key, according to Benish, because it’s like your digital elevator pitch. Sell yourself! All it takes is a few short paragraphs and bullet points to highlight your skills, accomplishments and goals. Sprinkle in some personality and employers may be interested in hiring you.

Speaking of personality, remember to change the URL on your public profile to your name, if possible. This makes it shorter, neater and easier to remember.

Badges are another component of a strong LinkedIn profile. For example, New and Emerging Media students who take and pass the HubSpot inbound marketing certification exam can display a badge on their profile. PRSSA members can showcase their membership card on LinkedIn as well.

Another cool thing about LinkedIn is its portfolio capabilities. Upload your résumé. Share some writing samples or photographs. If you’re working on something awesome for class, work or your internship, add it to your profile.

As students, adding courses related to the field you want to work in is a great way to show prospective employers that you have practical knowledge.

Don’t forget to interact with other users! After all, LinkedIn is a social network. Endorsements from coworkers and supervisors show that you have skills. Connect with your professors and classmates—you never know what connections they may have.





Using Social Media In Your Job Search

22 06 2016

By Jenna Nyberg

We’ve all Screenshot 2016-06-21 21.00.11heard it a hundred times: Be careful about what you post on your social media accounts. In this field more than most, the words you use and the habits you have on social media accounts might make or break your chance at employment. But instead of focusing on what not to do, let’s think about a few ways you can embrace social media to help score the job you want.

Know where to look.

A 2014 national survey by Jobvite found that the most popular social networks job recruiters are using to find employees are LinkedIn (94 percent), Facebook (65 percent) and Twitter (55 percent). In comparison, only 36 percent of job seekers are using LinkedIn to look for jobs. What does this mean? Get on LinkedIn! (And keep an eye out for job postings on Facebook and Twitter, too.)

Include social media links on your resume.

If this makes sense for the types of positions you’re applying for and if you feel confident about your presence on social media, go for it! Providing employers with these links will allow them to get a better idea of who you are, what your voice/writing style is like and how you interact online.

Update your profiles and settings.

According to the same Jobvite survey, 93 percent of recruiters looked at a candidate’s social profile, and 42 percent of the time the content they viewed led them to reconsider a candidate, both positively and negatively. With this in mind, think about maybe making some changes to your accounts, such as a more professional LinkedIn photo, stricter privacy settings on Facebook, appropriate and relevant tweets, etc.

Network your way into a job.

As I’m applying for jobs, I’m finding out that it really is “all about who you know.” Social media platforms are meant to help you make connections with people, so use them to your advantage. Whether it’s just letting people know you’re looking for jobs, connecting with people on LinkedIn or joining in on Twitter conversations, it’s important to get your name out there and on the radar of potential employers. When heading out on your next job hunt, keep in mind all of these ways that you can utilize social media to your advantage. It’s a great way to get ahead of the game!





Internship Spotlight: Creating Your Own Personal Brand

14 06 2016

By Catie Schultz (@CatieSchultz17)

As journalism students, we have it drilled into our heads very early in our courses how important it is to show your voice when creating content, however, it is even more imperative to focus on the creation of your own personal brand. But why is your personal brand so important? By setting the tone in creating your own personal brand, you are setting yourself apart from the competition. You also are creating better job opportunities by evolving your brand, developing better connections with people you work with as well as current and potential clients, generating industry recognition and so much more.

Hayley Rickmeier, a Public Relations and Journalism-Advertising major, wrote an internship newsletter article for Journalism 427: Professional Journalism Internship, outlining her insight on how to create your personal brand to prepare students for internships and life after graduation. Like many students, Hayley didn’t know what her personal brand was and expressed concern saying, “I am basically going to be the same as everyone else who graduates with the same degree. I don’t really know what will set me apart from them.”

To assist in trying to figure out where to start in developing your personal brand, Hayley thought of some great questions to consider. Use these questions to create responses about how you would answer. If you can answer all of these questions, you already have a great start in developing your personal brand.

  • What sets you apart from others and why are you unique?
  • What kind of situations do you excel in?
  • What area would you consider your absolute expertise?
  • What are some of your strongest personality traits?
  • What can you bring to the table in a future career of your choosing?

Another helpful way to gain insight is to ask people close to you about what you are great at. You can learn a lot about yourself by hearing what others think of your work ethic and personality. Paying attention to your social role also is helpful; an example of this would be if you are the person people always turn to for advice or for guidance during group projects, you are a natural leader.

As time goes by and you gain more experience, your personal brand will grow and change. As students, ours will be more goal-oriented until we gain professional experience, and that’s perfectly okay. Employers are looking for a brand that shows you know what you can bring to the table and that you are sure of your skills. For those of you interested in learning about how you can start your personal brand, The Complete Guide to Building Your Personal Brand has excellent information and highlights many ways you can learn how to build and expand your personal brand.

 





Amplifying Your Internship Experience

6 11 2015

By Ryan J. Sweeney, UW Oshkosh journalism alumnus (@sweenr0272)

Ryan_J_Sweeney_Headshot

Let’s face it: in today’s competitive job market, landing a college internship–whether it’s paid or not–is essential to bolstering your résumé, garnering real-life work experience, and getting hired after graduation. On the surface internships sound like a necessity, but how do you ensure that you’re getting the most out of the opportunity? Below I’ve compiled several tips on how to take full advantage of what your internship has to offer.

Show a Strong Work Ethic

Forget any and all rumors regarding interns and coffee-making. If you want to really get something out of this experience, you’ll need to prove yourself. Make deadlines, ask questions, and deliver high-quality work. Prove to your boss and your coworkers that you really care about the quality of work that you’re dishing out; your efforts won’t go unnoticed.

Get to Know Your Colleagues

Although working hard at what you do is imperative, networking is also key. Acclimating into your new work environment can help create trust between team members, generate contacts for your future career goals, and build confidence in yourself and your role within the company. Your coworkers will also feel more confident in you, too, once they realize you’re more than just a productive machine.

Provide Your Unique Millennial Insight

As a millennial, you know new trends in technology better than any other generation. Whether you’re passionate about mobile tech, adept on social media channels, or simply knowledgeable on the latest trends, providing this unique insight can help you be seen as a resource within your company.

Take Advantage of New Opportunities

If there’s a new opportunity available for the taking, don’t hesitate. As an intern, you have to be willing to try new things, even if it’s out of your comfort zone. But don’t just wait for opportunities to arise. There’s no shame in asking if there’s any additional work you can do.  

Overall, it’s important to take risks and give it your all. Your internship experience will only be as impactful on your future as you make it. If you’d rather just be the coffee-maker, then you’ll likely miss out on the truly rewarding experience that an internship can provide and maybe the possibility of that internship becoming a full-time job upon graduation.

Author Bio:

I graduated from the University of Wisconsin Oshkosh with a Bachelor’s degree in journalism with an emphasis in public relations and a minor in English with an emphasis in creative writing in spring 2015. I started working at E-Power Marketing in fall 2014 as an online marketing intern and became a full-time team member upon my graduation as an account specialist. Feel free to connect with me on LinkedIn, or Tweet at me!





“Go Network” Says Pandora’s Brody Karmenzind to Ad Media Class

27 10 2015

By: Cindy Schultz (@sindeelouhu)

Brody Karmenzind, account development specialist at Pandora and 2014 journalism graduate, offered media and career tips to Dr. Sara Hansen’s Ad Media class on Sept. 17. Via Skype, he shared insights from his Oakland, Calif., office and encouraged students to explore outside of their comfort zones to find advertising careers they will love.

BrodyKarmenzind

Karmenzind offered his experiences to show ways that networking, having multiple internships and putting oneself into uncomfortable situations can lead to the job of a lifetime. In January, Karmenzind joined the advertising sales team at Pandora headquarters. He works with more than 760 SMB clients via phone, email and LinkedIn to develop strategies using ad media planning with Pandora ad formats to help reach new customers. Before getting this job, Karmenzind submitted 35 job applications and interviewed with Google, Twitter, and Facebook. He stressed to put yourself out there on the job market and keep striving for what you want.

While talking to the students, Karmenzind stressed three main ideas:

Pay attention in Ad Media class

Advertising Media helped Karmenzind in key areas crucial to his current job:

  • Identify the demographic and target audience for your ads – this is the most important part of a campaign.
  • Understand the best medium to use to reach your intended audience. Think about what ads are you using and why. Your target market will help guide where your ads are placed.
  • Measure results after an ad is in place to verify effectiveness and determine what is working and what isn’t. This allows a company to know where its results are coming from so that they aren’t spending money blindly.

Working at Pandora is amazing

Karmenzind stated his favorite part of working at Pandora is the company culture. The majority of employees are under 30 years of age with an equal mix of men and women. Company culture is a regular source of motivation:

  • Employees often attend concerts, and some in-house concerts are held at Pandora corporate offices.
  • Team-building exercises and sales training opportunities abound. For example, a week was spent in Cancun, Mexico, to aid teamwork.
  • Karmenzind said he has honed his skills at ping-pong, which is a big part of the company’s culture. It is not unusual for team members to play two to three matches per day for 10- to 15-minute sessions. The company sponsors a ping-pong club and league.

During a recent visit to Oakland, Hansen and Dr. Timothy R. Gleason had an opportunity to catch up with Karmenzind and take in Pandora’s company culture. They hung out in the “D” of RADIO in the photo below.

Radio

Use your skills to network

Karmenzind provided suggestions for students to network toward landing internships and jobs:

  • Develop short- and long-term goals for yourself. Use your instructors for networking – they are great resources for job and career advice.
  • Polish your LinkedIn profile. Recently, LinkedIn visited Pandora and chose Karmenzind’s profile as No. 1 among Pandora employees (so be sure to check out his profile).
  • Tailor your skills and push your agenda in your hobbies and find ways to gain experience utilizing those passions. An Appleton gym Karmenzind belonged to wanted to improve its social media profile, so he worked with it and bargained for a free membership to the gym to boot.
  • Realize that you need to network to get work. Think about ways to stand out in online and in-person networking, such as interests, hobbies and experiences that will help potential employers remember you.
  • Take advantage of opportunities within the Journalism Department. He recalled how helping out at the Northeastern Wisconsin Scholastic Press Association allowed him to network with Kirsten Strom, a journalism alumna working at Pandora. He also cold emailed a local Pandora employee and invited him to breakfast. These connections were outside of his comfort zone but both of them recommended him for an internship at Pandora in Chicago – which led to his success today.