Since the start of the academic year, one hour every Thursday has been dedicated to listening and learning from inspirational PR practitioners from all areas of the industry. I have found the masterclasses extremely beneficial, acting as an opportunity to speak to PR professionals, learn about different roles within the industry and ultimately, network!
Here are 3 masterclasses that particularly stood out for me:
1. Will O’Neil from WE Comunications – before joining WE, Will worked at Weber Shandwick and We are Social. With 12 years’ experience of hiring ‘some of the sharpest minds working in the industry today’, Will shared what he looks for when recruiting for PR positions and how to stand out from the crowd. He also talked through WE’s creation of the Volvo campaign, demonstrating how you can be hugely successful on a very small budget. I was utterly inspired by Will’s passion for the industry and the work of WE Communications. Take a look at their Volvo campaign!
2. Lynsey Fox – now works at London College of Fashion as the Media and Communications manager. Lynsey shared her experience in the PR industry and how she has got where she is today. Her work experience included: Senior Account Manager at Freuds, PR Manager for Hugo Boss and Freelance PR Manager for Monsoon Accessorize. But what stood out for me the most, was how positively she described her time working at M&S as their Press officer for Lingerie and Special Projects. She explained how rewarding it is to work in-house for a brand that you are passionate about, to see it succeed and grow. She worked on the campaign ‘We Boobed’ after the crisis over DD+ bras being more expensive than smaller bras. She emphasised how important it is in PR to sometimes just hold your hands up and say sorry.
I was inspired by her excitingly diverse experience and positivity, I left the room feeling very positive about the industry I have chosen to be in.
3. LCC PR graduates, Perception vs. Reality – possibly the most refreshing talk of the year. Four recent graduates came back to LCC to give insider knowledge about their life as a student on the course and their transition from University to the PR industry. It was so uplifting to see previous students from my course now in successful PR roles and ultimately, living the dream! The panel included:
Aaron Shardey – graduated 2015 – now working at Edelman London
Gabriella Soderling – graduated 2015 – now working at the technology agency Hotwire PR
Maury Chasteau – graduated 2014 – now working in-house in financial PR for investment bank First Capital
Fran Jankowiak – graduated 2014 – now working at fashion agency Pop PR
It was stimulating to listen to the graduates praise the course and how they feel it complimented and set them up for real world. Although, the success of an individual is dependent on the individual and not their course, it was refreshing to hear the success stories from people who were once in my shoes and put my dreams into perspective.
I would like to thank my course leader, Adrian Crookes, for organising these masterclasses.
If you have been inspired talking to a professional within the PR industry, please do get in touch – I would love to hear from you!