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b2ap3_thumbnail_Screen-Shot-2014-10-23-at-10.44.40-AM.pngWaynesburg University’s Chapter of the Public Relations Student Society of America (PRSSA) was awarded the Star Chapter Award for meeting specific chapter and professional development goals for the second consecutive year.

“It is especially gratifying to achieve this accomplishment in consecutive years given we have just begun our fifth year as a chapter,” said Richard Krause, chair of the Department of Communication and faculty adviser to Waynesburg’s Chapter of PRSSA. “We are well ahead of the long-term goals and objectives that we established for the public relations major and the PRSSA chapter when we first started the process.”

The Public Relations Student Society of America National Committee evaluates the performance of PRSSA chapters and awards the recognition to chapters that meet at least eight of the following 10 requirements:

  • Conduct a high school outreach session and/or promote Affiliate membership to a nearby community college
  • Confirm attendance by at least one Chapter member at National Conference, National Assembly, a Regional Conference or Leadership Rally
  • Confirm that at least 10 percent of graduating seniors applied for PRSA Associate Membership
  • Confirm that at least one Chapter member applies for an individual National PRSSA scholarship or award
  • Confirm that the Chapter applied for at least one national PRSSA award
  • Extend an invitation to students/faculty from other disciplines to attend at least one Chapter meeting
  • Gain positive attention for the Chapter in at least one campus or community publication or other media
  • Give attention to ethics in at least one chapter meeting
  • Initiate and complete at least one community service project
  • Strengthen the Chapter’s relationship with its Public Relations Society of America (PRSA) sponsor chapter

In just its fifth year of existence, Waynesburg’s Chapter of PRSSA is one of 328 schools nationally associated with PRSSA, the student counterpart of the Public Relations Society of America (PRSA).

Waynesburg’s Chapter was one of 31 from around the country honored with Star Chapter status.

“This recognition means that our Chapter is one of the best in the nation,” said Megan Bayles, junior public relations major and the president of Waynesburg’s Chapter of PRSSA. “This award shows that we are doing things right, and we are offering our members all of the opportunities needed to succeed in the fast-paced world of public relations.”

Bayles added that receiving the Star Chapter Award reflects the hard work and dedication of the Chapter’s members and executive board.

“Gaining the honor of Star Chapter is not an easy feat to accomplish,” said Bayles. “It takes motivated members with innovative ideas and strong work ethics as well as strong and active leadership from advisers and our executive board. I feel so blessed to be part of a chapter with such great potential and such amazing members.”

The Chapter’s next goals are to apply for the Dr. F.H. Teahan Chapter Awards sponsored by PRSSA as well as to obtain National Affiliation for the Chapter’s student-run firm, Red Brick Communications.

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Ashley Wise, Senior Writer/Editor

724.852.7675 or awise@waynesburg.edu

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b2ap3_thumbnail_PRSSA.jpgSeven members of the Waynesburg University Public Relations Student Society of America (PRSSA) Chapter traveled to the PNC Park Hall of Fame Club in Pittsburgh, Pa., Tuesday, Jan. 28, to work the 2014 Public Relations Society of America (PRSA) Pittsburgh Renaissance Awards. The annual ceremony celebrates the brightest stars and best work in Pittsburgh’s public relations community. 

The students arrived before the event began and assisted with set up, schedule review and prep work. During the ceremony, students managed the registration table, communicating with more than 180 public relations practitioners from the Pittsburgh area. Members were also responsible for handing out the awards to the winners. 

“Having the opportunity to help plan and execute the Renaissance Awards with our parent Chapter is invaluable,” said Molly Winters, junior public relations major and the president of Waynesburg University’s PRSSA Chapter. “It shows the professionals we look up to that we are extremely dedicated and are willing to go the extra mile to get that knowledgeable experience.”

This is the second consecutive year the Waynesburg Chapter sent members to work the event after establishing a professional relationship with Dan Ayer, president of PRSA Pittsburgh and co-chair of the 2014 Renaissance Awards, in the fall of 2012. 

“Multiple members of PRSA Pittsburgh have had the opportunity to work with Waynesburg University students in the past,” said Ayer. “When it came time to look for help with our biggest and most high profile event, it was a no-brainer to ask Waynesburg.”

Because of the great impression the students made on Ayer at last year’s event, he contacted Richard Krause, chairman of the Department of Communication and faculty adviser to the Waynesburg University PRSSA, in the fall of 2013 to not only ask if his students could help work the event again, but also for an intern to take control of the call for entries and online entry submission process for the award categories. 

Jordan Mitrik, a sophomore public relations major and historian of Waynesburg University’s PRSSA Chapter, worked alongside Ayer and his team prior to the ceremony. Mitrik managed the entry process, confirmed with the Pittsburgh agencies of their entries as well as categorized them into the appropriate award sections. Once completed, the work done by Mitrik was sent to PRSA Los Angeles to judge the entries and select the winners of the 2014 PRSA Renaissance Awards. 

“The students from Waynesburg University were essential to the success of the Renaissance Awards,” said Ayer. “By knowing that we had such a dedicated and capable group to help, the board was able to focus on making the event even stronger this year.”

Not only did the students work the event, but they also had the opportunity to network with working professionals in the public relations field. Winters said getting the chance to extend the Chapter’s skills and interact with Waynesburg PRSSA’s parent Chapter at the Renaissance Awards was very beneficial. 

“Working with our parent Chapter is extremely important to us, because the work we are doing as students is going to reflect how we act as professionals one day,” said Winters. “We strive to be like our parent Chapter professionals, so working alongside them is very beneficial to us.”

Chartered in 2010, the award-winning Waynesburg University Chapter of the Public Relations Student Society of America strives to prepare members for their future profession through experience, opportunity and achievement.

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Contact: Ashley Wise, Communication Specialist

724.852.7675 or awise@waynesburg.edu

 

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b2ap3_thumbnail_PRSSA-Resized.jpgWaynesburg University’s chapter of the Public Relations Student Society of America (PRSSA) was awarded the Star Chapter Award for meeting specific chapter and professional development goals. The chapter was one of 27 from around the country honored with the prestigious award.

“This is a huge step for us at Waynesburg PRSSA,” said Molly Winters, a junior public relations major and the president of Waynesburg’s chapter of PRSSA. “We are up to par with some of the best chapters around the country.”

A chapter must meet eight of the 10 Star Chapter requirements to earn the national award.   

“The stars or requirements range from participating in Ethics Month, applying for national scholarships and holding an annual event,” said Winters. “We actually completed all 10 stars.”

In just its fourth year of existence, Waynesburg’s chapter of PRSSA is one of 328 other schools from around the country nationally associated with PRSSA, the student counterpart to the Public Relations Society of America (PRSA).  

“To do it in three years and to do it in a chapter with approximately 25 dues-paying members, I think is an extraordinary accomplishment,” said Richard Krause, the adviser for Waynesburg’s chapter of PRSSA and assistant professor and chair of the Department of Communication. “It speaks volumes to the dedication of our students.” 

Krause said that while earning Star Chapter was an objective for he and his students, it was looked at as a long-term goal because of how new Waynesburg’s chapter is.

“To achieve that in year four accelerates the plan,” said Krause. “The goal is always to get better and this program has the potential to be outstanding, given our unique mission and our talented students.” 

Moving forward, Waynesburg’s chapter of PRSSA is hoping to gain national accreditation for its student-run PR firm, Red Brick Communications. 

“There is so much potential with this chapter to do some amazing things, and we just now have to work very hard to achieve those goals,” said Krause.  

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Contact: Ashley Wise, Communication Specialist

724.852.7675or awise@waynesburg.edu

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With an office overlooking the busy streets of Fifth Avenue in New York, N.Y., Rebecca (Lewis) Caruso, a 1979 alumna, has traveled a long way from her days as an English major at Waynesburg College. Her experience at Waynesburg has led to a highly successful public relations career and her position as the Executive Vice President for Corporate Communications at L'Oreal USA.

 

The Waynesburg University Public Relations Student Society of America (PRSSA) Chapter invited Caruso to speak to students as part of the Chapter's third annual PR Week. Caruso happily accepted the invitation to speak about her career, her passion and her role as a vice president for a large company.

 

In her current role, Caruso oversees all external communications efforts, including media relations, government relations, sustainable development, philanthropy and crisis communications for L'Oreal USA. She also manages two L'Oreal programs that recognize women researchers in the field of science and advocate career opportunities in science to young women.

 

“Our programs recognize and help advance women and girls in science,” Caruso said. “As the mother of two daughters, I certainly appreciate the importance of the roles that women play in science but science is also a strong part of L'Oreal's DNA. We're all about science and over half of our scientists are women. We really walk the talk.”

 

After graduating from Waynesburg College with a bachelor's degree in English, Caruso went on to receive her graduate degree in corporate communications in 1984. Caruso started her first job as the assistant director of public relations for a Pittsburgh college. It was in this position that Caruso discovered her passion for working with the media.

 

This new found passion led Caruso to a variety of positions in the Mid-West. She worked for a number of companies in communication roles, including Coldwell Banker Commercial Real Estate; the world's largest public relations firm, Edelman; American Motors; Chrysler; and McDonald's. She moved back to the East Coast after joining Toys “R” Us as Vice President of Corporate Communications for six years where she built the company's first corporate communications department before ultimately accepting her current position with L'Oreal.

 

“One of the things I have liked best about my career is that I moved around a bit and have had lots of opportunities that were completely out of my comfort zone,” Caruso said. “It's been a wonderful experience.”

 

Looking back, Caruso acknowledges that her involvement and studies at Waynesburg helped prepare her to take the path to where she is today.

 

“I always think back fondly on my Waynesburg experience,” she said. “The education I received has served me well for as far as I've come.”


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Excited to make a 1,700 mile journey across the country to benefit Waynesburg University's Public Relations Student Society of America (PRSSA) chapter, two students packed their bags and set out for Albuquerque, N.M., this spring.

 

Molly Winters, a sophomore public relations major from Beaver Falls, Pa., and Brittany Semco, a sophomore public relations and design major from Jamestown, R.I., attended the 2013 PRSSA National Assembly Thursday, April 4, through Sunday, April 7, hoping to bring valuable skills back to Waynesburg's Chapter.

 

The PRSSA National Assembly gathers every year to make influential, long-term decisions about the future of the Society. During this three-day conference, a new National Committee is elected, bylaws of the Society are reviewed and attendees are given the chance to participate in leadership training and networking.

 

Seeing their involvement with the National Assembly as a valuable resource for the Waynesburg Chapter, both Winters and Semco were eager to travel to the conference and experience everything the National Assembly had to offer.

 

“I was very honored to be able to represent Waynesburg University at a national event,” Winters said. “The opportunity left me with valuable ideas that I can share with our Chapter to better it and continue its growth. I made a lot of new friends in Chapters across the country that I can continue to share ideas with throughout the semester.”

 

Winters and Semco currently hold the positions of President and Public Relations Director, respectively, in the Waynesburg PRSSA Chapter, which was designed to enhance the education of public relations students.

 

“We are currently in only our third year as a Chapter, and we have become recognized by the PRSA Pittsburgh Chapter as one of the more aggressive and active Chapters in the region,” said Richard Krause Jr., chair of the department of communication and faculty adviser to Waynesburg University's PRSSA.

 




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