Summer Internship Showcase – Agency


Kelly (left) and another fellow intern working the LA Film Festival on behalf of the film ID represented, “The Road Within.”

Kelly Groves is currently a senior and is interning at ID Public Relations in Los Angeles. “ID-PR is at the heart of all entertainment and I have truly learned why their name comes from the word ‘identity,’” Kelly says. “ID works to shape and define some of the best talent, brands, films, studios, and companies in the nation and has successfully become the intersection of entertainment public relations and brand communications.”

Kelly’s favorite part about this internship is all of the networking opportunities she has had by working at red carpet events, going to photo shoots, and even just going to lunch with ID’s welcoming employees. “I can’t wait to move to LA to start my career in the entertainment public relations industry!”



Elizabeth (right) filming her boss for a video blog that just started this summer. Elizabeth, who is in charge of editing and filming, has helped her boss garner new business!

Elizabeth Chavez is currently a senior and is interning at a small agency in Austin, Texas, called Kimberly Strenk Public Relations, Inc. Over the past few weeks she has learned that it’s important to create learning opportunities for yourself by taking initiative and asking for what you want.

“My favorite thing about my internship is that I am given a lot of responsibility,” Elizabeth says. “The things I do in the office are new and exciting for me, but ultimately I know it will be going directly to the client, so the work must be professional.”

Elizabeth learned about this internship through the career service database and says that she used her experience from PRSSA to help her get the job because of her lack of prior pre-professional experience.

8 Tips for Incoming Freshmen

1. Stay organized

Whether you use a planner, a phone calendar or a piece of paper, stay organized and know your due dates because they will creep up on you quickly.

2. Be involved

Joining a club, organization or team is one of the best ways to make new friends and create unforgettable memories. There are hundreds of different organizations on campus, so you’re bound to find an organization that really interests you.

3. Take advantage of opportunities

From internships to volunteer events, any opportunity that will allow you to get career experience is a great way to learn. Although having a 4.0 is a great accomplishment, having relevant experience is what professionals look at when hiring new interns and employees – so start early!

4. Do things that scare you

One of the best ways to learn about yourself is to get out of your comfort zone. Even if you don’t have a friend to drag along with you, go to that dorm event or join that organization. The best opportunities will happen when you challenge yourself to do something new.

5. Try not to procrastinate

The keyword is “try.” It’s going to happen, but try your best to stay proactive and up-to-date. Take breaks when necessary, but make sure to get your work done in a timely manner.

6. Don’t be afraid to ask for help

There are so many helpful professors, students and resources at this university; you’re not alone.

7. Don’t worry about having your future figured out

Everyone expects you to have the next four years planned out, but it’s totally okay to not know what you want to do and to change your major (once or even several times). Find your passion and pursue that. Don’t just choose a major because you’ll make a lot of money. Actually find something you enjoy and everything else will fall into place.

8. Be yourself

College is a fresh start. Do yourself a favor and don’t be something you’re not. Do what makes you happy, and in the end, people are going to like you for you!

Farewell to our May 2014 Graduates!

Name: Katie DoanKatie Doan2

Major: Public Relations, Business Foundations

Hometown: Chicago, Ill

Future Plans: After graduation I will be moving back to Chicago to work at a small agency that focuses on corporate communications called Reputation Partners.

Advice to Underclassman: Never underestimate the power of networking. It may be uncomfortable but it gets easier with practice, and learning how to build relationships with people is an integral part of the communications field.


Regina FName: Regina Flanigan, former Vice President of Chapter Development

Major/Minor: English/Business

Hometown: Portland, Texas

Future Plans: Working in public relations or communication, and definitely becoming a mentor to PRSSA members!

Advice to Underclassmen: Don’t be afraid to take positions in similar fields like advertising, marketing or corporate communications – there is always more to learn about this industry, especially when so much of it overlaps. Learn how to take feedback. And don’t forget that networking isn’t just for professionals. The people you meet here could be your coworkers, the interns you manage, or your fellow future industry leaders. What starts here changes the world and that begins with us.


Name: Amanda Grindele, former VP of Special EventsAmanda Grindele

Major: Public Relations, Business Foundations

Hometown: Rowlett, Texas

Future Plans: I will be going into technical sales with Oracle and working from their Austin offices. From then on, I’ll just be rolling with the punches. Eventually, however, I would like to end up back in Dallas, possibly in a digital consulting role.

Advice to Underclassmen: My biggest piece of advice, and something I wish I would have understood as a freshman and sophomore, is that proactively seeking out and pursuing what you want is the only way you’re going to get it. Above all else – grades, an impressive resume, clout, etc. – employers want to see ambition and fearlessness. You are no more and no less capable than you believe yourself to be.


Name: Laura Lee HarrisLaura Lee Harris

Major: Public Relations, Business Foundations

Hometown: Coppell, Texas

Future Plans: Work in the events industry

Advice to Underclassmen: People always tell you to network, volunteer and intern, but only do if you are going above and beyond so that your superiors in these situations                                                                                            will remember and recommend you.


Name: Aly Kasberg, former VP of Public Relations

Aly Kasberg

Major: Public Relations, Business Foundations, TexasMedia Sequence

Hometown: New Braunfels, Texas

Future Plans: Moving to Chicago to work at Digitas as a Media Planner

Advice to Underclassmen: College is what you make it! This University will present you will some stellar opportunities, but it’s up to you to take them. Never be afraid to go after what you want!


amy lachName: Amy Lach

Major: Public Relations, Business Foundations

Hometown: The Woodlands, Texas

Future Plans: I aspire to pursue a career in corporate event planning and/or community relations. After traveling in Europe for a month after graduation, I look forward to starting work in either Austin or Houston.

Advice to Underclassmen: Start interning early on in college to gain experience and get a better idea of what you want to do after graduation. If you have the opportunity to study abroad, do it! Living and studying in another country will enhance your perspective of the world. Finally, work hard but don’t forget to have fun, because it’s the relationships you form in college that can last a lifetime.


Name: Austin Malcolm, former PresidentAustin Malcolm

Major: Public Relations, Business Foundations

Hometown: Denton, Texas

Future Plans: Assistant Director of iD Tech Camp at Stanford University

Advice to Underclassmen: My advice would be something that seems obvious but is commonly overlooked. You are young. You will be young for another 10 years. That means you have another 10 years of making mistakes, getting in awkward situations, and constantly being embarrassed. Don’t beat yourself up about anything in life right now, “Take chances, make mistakes, get messy.” – Miss Frizzle


Morgan PesanteName: Morgan Pesante

Major: Public Relations, Business Foundations

Hometown: Denton, Texas

Future Plans: I will be interning at FleishmanHillard Austin this summer.

Advice to Underclassmen: Enjoy every moment of your time at UT because it’s precious. Make lifelong friends and memories. Try not to stress about the little things because everything always has a way of working itself out in the end.


Name: Samantha SubarSamantha S

Major: Public Relations, Business Foundations, TexasMedia Sequence

Hometown: Plano, Texas

Future Plans: Public Relations Associate for Spredfast

Advice to Underclassmen: Network and work hard at your internships, they could turn into something!


Name: Monica RodriguezMonica Rodz

Major: Public Relations, Business Foundations

Hometown: Houston, Texas

Future Plans: Accepted full-time account coordinator position in Austin at Steel Branding

Advice to Underclassmen: Don’t compare yourself to others. Your time will come and it will all be worth it. Make sure you keep an open mind because the world of PR can take you anywhere.


Maria VName: Maria Villasenor

Major: Public Relations, Business Foundations

Hometown: San Antonio, Texas

Future Plans: To stay in Austin and practice PR in the tech field, preferably the gaming industry.

Advice to Underclassmen: There are so many opportunities and resources available. Don’t wait, take advantage of everything.


Congratulations to our graduates! We can’t wait to see the many amazing things you all accomplish. Time to change the world!


Meet the Newly-Elected 2014-2015 PRSSA Executive Board

Vi TranVi

Position: President

Classification: Senior

Major(s)/Minor(s)/Certificate(s): public relations major/Business Foundations Certificate

Hometown: Dallas, Texas

Fun Fact: “I drink coffee like it’s water and often times, I take it black – hold the cream and sugar, please.”


Name: Nikki DulayNikki

Position: VP of Chapter Development

Classification: Junior

Major(s)/Minor(s)/Certificate(s): public relations major/French minor/Business Foundations Certificate

Hometown: Sugar Land, Texas

Fun Fact: “I’ve donated my hair to Locks of Love three times.”


Name: Landon HoranLandon

Position: VP of Special Operations

Classification: Senior

Major(s)/Minor(s)/Certificate(s): public relations major/government minor/Global Track Business Foundations Certificate

Hometown: Plano, Texas

Fun Fact: “I studied abroad in Dublin last summer with the UT PR Maymester program.”


Name: Alyssa NeilsonAlyssa

Position: VP of Special Events

Classification: Senior

Major(s)/Minor(s)/Certificate(s): public relations major/international relations and global studies minor

Hometown: Houston, Texas

Fun Fact: “I’m in love with sneakers and I collect them; I have 46 pairs!”


Name: Michelle HillMichelle

Position: VP of Public Relations

Classification: Senior

Major(s)/Minor(s)/Certificate(s): public relations major/Business Foundations Certificate/TexasMedia Sequence

Hometown: Weslaco, Texas

Fun Fact: “I walked my cat, Sophie, once. She didn’t quite grasp the concept.”


Name: Elizabeth ChavezElizabeth

Position: VP of Professional Development

Classification: Senior

Major(s)/Minor(s)/Certificate(s): double majoring in international relations and global studies and public relations

Hometown: Austin, Texas

Fun Fact: “I used to want to be a doctor and somehow that led me to touch a human brain.”


Name: Jay EggerJay

Position: Bateman Team Director

Classification: Senior

Major(s)/Minor(s)/Certificate(s): double majoring in public relations and political communications

Hometown: McAllen, Texas

Fun Fact: “I have about 150 GB of purely hip-hop music on my computer (and that’s not nearly all of it!)”


Name: Jasmin EscherJasmin

Position: Secretary

Classification: Sophomore

Major(s)/Minor(s)/Certificate(s): advertising major/German minor/Business Foundations Certificate

Hometown: Born in Hamburg, Germany, but grew up in Dallas, Texas

Fun Fact: “I’m a musical junkie! I was a musical theatre major my first year of college, and heavily involved in local productions in Dallas. I still love to act and sing, and try to do it as often as I can in my free time. If anyone ever needs someone to go see a touring show with, hit me up!”


Name: Neha SethiNeha

Position: Secretary

Classification: Senior

Major(s)/Minor(s)/Certificate(s): public relations major/Business Foundations Certificate

Hometown: Plano, Texas

Fun Fact: “I can read and write Hindi.”


Name: Autumn TaylorTaylor

Position: Creative and Digital Specialist

Classification: Junior

Major(s)/Minor(s)/Certificate(s): double majoring in public relations and Asian studies/Global Track Business Foundations Certificate

Hometown: Breckenridge, Texas

Fun Fact: “I lived in Alaska for about three years! A moose wandered near our neighborhood once…”





Announcing: Austin PR Field Guide

UT PRSSA is starting a new initiative to introduce students to the public relations landscape in Austin and provide an opportunity for all employers to be represented in front of future professionals.

The Austin PR Field Guide will consist of information like a physical address, website, specialty and contact information on every public relations or communications firm, agency, organization or non-profit in the Austin area. This information will be shared with students for free in a central location on this website.

In addition, the Field Guide will also be a fundraising opportunity for our Chapter: all organizations indexed on the Field Guide will have the opportunity for a 200 word max personalized description written by a PRSSA member to accompany their entry. This content will be developed with a representative from that organization in order to share further insight into Austin’s unique public relations and communications opportunities.

Submissions can come from anyone and will be fact-checked for accuracy. The form to submit is here.

The Field Guide model for sharing knowledge and fundraising has already generated buzz and admiration from other Chapters. We hope that its success will spur copycats and provide information to students across Texas and hopefully, PRSSA Chapters nationwide.

It will be a team effort to make the Field Guide as comprehensive as possible, so please submit your organization and share the news!

5 Tips for the Internship Application Process

Written by: Michelle Hill

1. Personalize each cover letter
Every time you apply somewhere new, make sure that your cover letter is not generic and the name of the business could not easily be replaced with another. Do your research, highlight your strengths and show your personality.

In addition, the place you apply to needs to not only know how they can benefit you, but how you can benefit them. Don’t forget that this is a two-way street.

2. Triple check your resume for errors
After you proofread your resume, have your professors and PRSSA friends proofread it. The more the merrier!

Also, keep in mind that the most relevant information should be towards the top and that anything you put down on this paper can be asked about during an interview, so don’t stretch the truth.

3. Make your resume stand out
Black-and-white resumes look clean and well-organized, but adding an accent color or displaying your name and contact information in a different fashion can be the one thing that makes your resume memorable. Get creative!

4. Remember that experience doesn’t only mean previous jobs held
Getting your first internship is usually the most difficult because you don’t have any previous internship experiences to talk about. However, don’t forget that the positions you hold in sports and organizations can be just as good. Find what’s relevant to the internship and talk it up! 

5. Pick and perfect a couple of writing samples
So you’ve only written a couple of news releases and news stories in Junker’s PR 317 class? Use them!

Pick two or three graded assignments and edit them by using the corrections given. The recruiter knows that you are a student and likely haven’t written on the professional level yet. Use these assignments as a springboard to get more writing experience. 


Regional Conference Recap

By Jasmin Escher


The Red River Regional Conference was hosted in Dallas this past weekend by The University of Oklahoma and The University of Texas at Austin’s local PRSSA chapters. This was the first regional conference to be held in Region Three in over ten years. One hundred and forty students came from schools as far as Michigan to join together for a weekend of learning and furthering their knowledge of the public relations field. Here are a few highlights of the unforgettable three-day conference!

Friday evening: Actor and Producer Glenn Morshower, who’s starred in 24, Transformers and Law and Order, kicked off the conference with an inspiring talk attributing how to hone in our natural tendency to be a winner by listening to “whispers”.


Saturday: Break out sessions!

Blake Lewis, PRSA 2014 National Secretary and Senior Consultant of Lewis PR, spoke on the value of measurement, emphasizing that measurement must be central, focused on balancing both organization and audience priorities, and that the approach needs to be determined at the start of the program or year.

UT professor Dave Junker shared how storytelling is the cohesive component and core of all public relations.


Jamaison Schuler of Dean Foods and Lisa Vasquez of Collin College gave tips on how to build and maintain your professional network. Finding a mentor, following up after interviews and connecting on LinkedIn are all ways to reach out and build your network. Just remember – upholding those connections after they’ve been made is just as important as establishing them, whether it be a monthly email or a retweet!


A midday panel focusing on how to find your PR path towards wither agency or corporate included panelists Marley Goudge (Senior PR Manager of Digital and Social Media at AT&T), Linh Le (PR Specialist at Haynes and Boone), Jamaison Schuler and Blake Lewis. Each weighed in their experiences, all agreeing that leveraging and getting experience in college, knowing your industry and your goals, and getting yourself a cushion are necessary for graduates as they prepare to get a job.


After lunch, Brittany Aguilar of Pulse Point Group discussed social listening and media strategies.


Recent graduate Katie Chrisman taught us how to train the “dragons” in the PR industry.


Closing speaker Korey McMahon of McMahon Marketing gave an inspiring interactive workshop teaching us how to get out of our “Southern Comfort Zone”, along with an unexpected surprise…


Unlimited free Starbucks and heated case competition debates are a few among many eventful moments of this weekends conference. The best part? Spending time together as a UTPRSSA chapter doing what we do best – learning about something we love and having fun while doing so! Hook ‘em.