10/18 Meeting Recap: Learning the Basics of Photoshop


By: Denise Candelo

If you missed our meeting this Tuesday, have no fear! Below is a summary of some of the major skills we learned in our Photoshop workshop as well as some highlights about the Burson-Marsteller internship program.


Photoshop Workshop

Members of our PRSSA chapter gathered in one of the College of Communication’s computer labs to get a hands-on tutorial on Photoshop. The workshop was led by our creative director Mallie Rust, who is a fourth-year Advertising and English student.

She began the workshop by reassuring us all that although many people have reservations about working with the graphics editor, it really isn’t as complicated as it looks!


The main takeaway?

It is important to remember that Photoshop is a pixel-based photo editor.  This means that instead of being made up of smooth lines, everything that we see on the editor is going to be based around pixels, which is a crucial piece of information that is needed to understand the “layers” function on Photoshop.

Layers correspond to every “object” you add to the document, in turn creating its own layer. In order to edit a specific object, you have to be in the specific layer that corresponds to said object in order to modify it. Additionally, layers can be locked which can help prevent any unwanted changes.  Most importantly, you need to always be aware of what layer you’re in!


Skills Learned

The first skill we learned during the workshop was how to use the magnetic lasso tool. The magnetic lasso tool detects pixels of a certain color and distinguishes information and content you based on those pixels. This is particularly useful for when you are trying to cut someone out of a background.

The second skill we familiarized ourselves with was removing objects by using the content aware tool on Photoshop. The content aware tool will pull pixels from the surrounding background of a hole or gap in a graphic, and use the surrounding background to fill in the gap and fix it.

A more comprehensive step-by-step tutorial of both skills can be found through the following links:
Removing Objects with Content Aware Tool
The Magnetic Lasso Tool

How can you improve your skills?

You can learn more tech and photo-editing skills by visiting Lynda.com, an online learning platform that was brought to us by the people at LinkedIn. On the website you can find a multitude of video tutorials on Photoshop, so that you can improve your photo editing skills at your own pace. Best of all, it is completely free for UT students!



Finally, our meeting concluded with a visit from a representative from Burson-Marsteller, the world-renowned PR agency. The company was founded in 1953 and has a presence in over 150 countries around the world, making Burson-Marsteller one of the top PR agencies. They have a strong footprint in a wide variety of areas and work with companies such as Ford Motors, Chipotle, and Bank of America.

They offer an incredible ten-week internship program for current juniors and seniors who are interested in the PR industry. The internship program itself is robust in nature because interns get the opportunity to do entry-level PR work at a large reputable agency. They even hire interns who make a lasting impression!

For more information on the internship be sure to visit: The Harold Burson Summer Internship Program.


Information for 2017 Spring and Summer Internships


By: Jieun Lee

Internships are highly important for students, especially juniors and seniors. These positions offer students real-life work experience before getting real jobs. However, internship application deadlines are approaching quickly! For those who have no idea where to start or feel overwhelmed, we’ve put together a quick rundown of the internship application process for seven different companies:

RPA offers students the opportunity to intern through the Spark Internship Program. Applicants should submit their resumes and a Social Project, which is a 10-second Snapchat video where applicants can tell RPA about themselves in a creative way. Apply for a Spring 2017 internship by October, and for a Summer 2017 internship by February.

PMG is an advertising agency that is located in Fort Worth. To apply for an internship, submit your application on PMG’s website or email PMG recruiter Leah Gilligan (Leah@pmg.com) with your resume. You will then be contacted by  PMG for the next step of the application process, the PMG Online Assessment. There is no specific deadline posted online, but submit your application as soon as possible if you’re looking for a spring internship.

Cohn & Wolfe is one of the largest PR agencies in the nation. Its spring internship application deadline is October 30th. Email Matthew Young (matthew.young@cohnwolfe.com) with the following documents by the deadline:

  • Resume
  • Cover letter
  • One-page news release writing sample announcing your new intern position

Pierpont Communications
Pierpont is a PR agency that has 4 local offices in Texas. If you’re looking for a spring internship, send your resume as soon as possible to a recruiter based in your preferred location:

If you’re looking for a summer 2017 internship at Pierpont PR, send your updated resume to the appropriate recruiter in February.

LIVESTRONG offers unpaid internships to current students. Those interested can apply on the LIVESTRONG website. Here are the upcoming internship application deadlines:

  • Spring 2017: apply by December 12th, 2016
  • Summer 2017: apply by May 8th, 2017
  • Fall 2017: apply by August 14th, 2017

Applications for GSD&M’s 2017 spring internship program will be posted to the career page on its website within the next few weeks. If you are interested, keep checking the website! You can apply directly online for the departmental internship that you are interested in.

The Richards Group
The Richards Group is a well-known advertising agency offering internships in a variety of departments, including brand management, digital strategy, public relations, and more. Heads up: The Richards Group will be conducting informational interviews on campus on October 17th! Make sure you sign up for a spot through UT CCS CareerSource.
For more information about internships, go to each company’s website and research! Start contacting recruiters and preparing your applications. Don’t miss your chance to work with these great companies!


10/4 Meeting Recap: Inside Fashion & Lifestyle PR with POM PR!


By: Tiffany Lin

Couldn’t make it to the meeting this Tuesday? Read all about this week’s speakers from Patterns of Movement (POM) PR!


About the Speakers

Kristin Chin’s background in the industry started in 15 years ago, working with multiple fashion brands in corporate public relations. She was involved in high profile and high fashion events such as the Oscars and Emmys. About 9 years ago, Chin moved to Austin where she noticed an abundance of food, corporate and other genres of public relations. She saw a need for an agency specializing in fashion public relations, which is when she founded Patterns Of Movement PR in 2010.

Mandy Mayekawa is a University of Texas alumna. Before graduating in 2013 in public relations, Mayekawa landed an internship with POM PR after hearing them speak at a PRSSA meeting. The internship was an amazing experience. She learned almost everything about the trade outside of her UT classes at the internship. She was employed by Lionsgate, where she worked for a variety of clients such as Hunger Games and Divergent. Mayekawa mostly handled film PR and international publicity. When a position opened up with POM PR, she couldn’t pass the opportunity up and she has been with the agency ever since.


A glimpse of POM PR

POM PR is focused on fashion and lifestyle. They are all about determining the best story to pitch to the press. They have clients all around Texas and have build a substantial network with editors and influencers.  

On a day-to-day basis, Mayekawa and Chin are in a whirlwind of writing; there is a ton of pitch drafting. When they are not writing, they are contacting the press and creating press clips after they secure the press. They are scheduling interviews and covering the interviews, as well as managing Instagram and Facebook for many of their clients.

Austin Fashion Week is a large project that POM PR undertakes every year. Along with the founders, Chin has been on the board since the very beginning. Though there were many changes, Austin Fashion Week has evolved into a 10- day event that starts with a kick off event. Now hosted at the JW Marriott, the project has retail events in the middle of the week and three to four nights of runway shows. Famous names have crossed their itinerary such as the judges from Project Runway, but recently there has been an increase in independent designers.

Some things have changed in the industry. For example, POM PR now spends a significant portion of time working with bloggers due to their influence. But some things haven’t changed. For example, the overall success of a story still relies on trends, timing, and what works for POM PR and the press.

Other than traditional hooks such as Mother’s Day, POM PR features the uniqueness of the brand to catch editors’ eyes.


Their Clients

Eleve, one of their clients is an all natural and vegan cosmetics brand. As a new client, POM PR discussed where the brand was in market, what their goals were and how PR can help them with their goals. Since Eleve is a newer brand, they wanted the agency to get the word out locally. POM PR reached out to boutiques and salons to see if they were interested in being wholesale vendors. Other than the more traditional methods, POM PR reached out to bloggers and piqued their interest through event invites and gifting. The company welcomed the media to meet the founder and try the products out.

Another one of their clients is Shaesby Fine Jewelry, where their main goal was to broaden their reach and to appear on national news sources. POM PR honed in on what made Shaesby special, which directed them to the brand’s unique collections at the time.

The Isle Collection was made with mixed metals, had a lower price point, and designed with a celestial pattern in mind. POM PR made the inspirations for the designs the focal point of the campaign.

The Bridal collections were attached to a custom experience. Customers could take their family heirloom diamond and make it into a brand new ring. The media visited the studio in Allendale, where they saw the process of how the jewelry was created. What was unique was the opportunity to see the rings being made and potentially meeting the artist or designer of your ring.

During the campaign, POM PR wanted to connect the brand to new and current clients. To achieve Shaesby’s second goal, they pitched to international outlets and cultivated relationships with the press.

PR is notoriously hard to quantify, so clips and social media shout outs are the results to show to clients that says, “This is where your money is going to.” Shaesby was featured in Refinery 29 and most recently in Elle during New York Fashion Week. The article in Elle was especially rewarding after a year of communication, gifting and nurturing of the relationship. Being able to see and share an article is the fruition of hours of hard work and is one of the best parts of being in the industry. Just make sure to notify clients on how long PR can take effect.


POM PR Pro Tips

  • Make your resume (include your name in the file):
    • Relevant
    • One page
    • Descriptive
  • Go to the interview:
    • Appropriately dressed
      With hard copies of your resume and writing samples
    • With a notebook
    • With questions and knowledge of the company
  • After the interview:
    • Send a thank you note/follow up
    • Send additional materials they request

Texas PRSSA Featured in Moody Monthly!


Communication Council, the governing body of the Moody College of Communication, was kind enough to include us in the October issue of Moody Monthly! Check out the full feature here.

Agency Tour Recap: Edelman


By: Brandon Hormuth

Edelman is one of the largest independently owned PR firms in the world, with 65 global offices and global headquarters in Chicago and New York City. On September 29, Texas PRSSA visited Edelman for its first agency tour of the year, bringing along the chapter’s biggest agency tour group yet with nearly 20 members in attendance.

Our agency tour took place on one of Edelman’s “Fundays,” which is a day set aside each month for the purpose of having a more relaxed and comfortable work environment. Today’s theme was “wear your favorite sports team”, and a lot of employees were able to show support for their alma maters.

The Austin office currently has about 40 employees, and is considered one of Edelman’s more moderately sized offices, with smaller offices in cities like Orlando that only have about 12-15 employees. The headquarters in Chicago and New York City are their largest offices, and have over 500 employees. Before our Q&A session we waited in the office’s lounge area, which held a giant kitchen full of unlimited snacks and beverages for Edelman’s employees and a large bookshelf surrounded by lounge chairs.

We then met Marissa, who focuses on the firm’s technology accounts, and learned about how the company was founded and how the Austin office has grown. She led a Q&A with some of Edelman’s newer employees, including one that had just started two weeks ago. The employees talked about their positions within the firm and our members asked questions such as “how do you apply the skills you learned in college to your current job?” After the Q&A session, Marissa led us on a quick tour of the office and its different facilities.

Edelman’s internship program is specifically for post-graduates. The reason for this is because Edelman’s internships are paid and full-time, and the firm wants their interns to be able to fully focus on their work and not have to worry about school. However, many interns for the company end up with full-time offers upon successful completion of the internship.

There are many benefits to working at Edelman. For example, Marissa talked about Edelman’s exchange program which allows out-of-town employees to switch offices when they are in a city that holds another one of their offices. This allows employees to continue to work in a similar environment and meet their fellow employees, instead of having to work out of a hotel room. Edelman is also flexible about moving offices permanently, like Marissa did when she moved from the San Francisco office to the Austin location.

For more information about Edelman and their internship process, be sure to check out their website at edelman.com.



9/20 Meeting Recap: Getting Social with Spredfast



By Lindsey Hollander

Did you miss this week’s meeting? Not to worry! We had some awesome guest speakers and recruiters but this recap should give you the gist. However… you did miss out on free Cane’s.

Beyond Likes & Retweets: Social Media Strategy for the PR Professional
Courtney Lowell & Samantha Subar of Spredfast

We were lucky enough to have Courtney Lowell and Samantha Subar from Spredfast come speak with us Tuesday about social media strategy. Spredfast is an Austin-based social media software company. They have over 500 employees and 650 customers including Edelman and the NFL. Courtney is director of communications and Samantha, a former Texas PRSSA member, is a PR manager.

Courtney discussed Spredfast in terms of 4 different products: conversations, promotions, intelligence and experiences. Her presentation then went into the changes the PR industry has faced and the ways Spredfast adapts to that.

A New Lens On Social:
Courtney stressed the idea of story telling. Social used to be just about product, company and customer news – which is great, but it was dry storytelling and these stories often had a long lead time. Today, the value of social is about storytelling and setting and evolving goals.

Enter Social Data:
Courtney acknowledged the fear and concern some may have now when told to be “more data driven” or to have a “data approach”. It could sound boring or intimidating but social data is completely different — it’s the always-on focus group.

Courtney then shared a lot of the interesting data Spredfast has found. For example, 11% of the people that post on Instagram with the hashtag “no filter” are actually using a filter on the image. This was conducted with their unique software and the back end of Instagram. Another example is with the Starbucks holiday cups this past year. After Starbucks released the new cups there was outrage, but it turns out most of the outrage was actually about the fact that there was outrage. Spredfast was able to determine that this “crisis” or “outrage” actually wasn’t a valid issue despite all the mentions in social spaces.

How do you scale this program?
Samantha then reviewed scaling and the power of data. It’s not just about blogging and enriching the news — with data you can create your own campaign and think in terms of headlines. Spredfast has 76% SOV over their largest competitor. They also have about 10 million social shares from their data stories.

The presentation was wrapped up with a few closing thoughts from Samantha. She encouraged us to think differently – about social media, about how you pitch, about different organizations, and more.

We also had a few recruiters at our meeting! RPA, a holistic ad agency based in LA. and General Mills both stopped by to speak briefly before the career fair. RPA discussed their unique internship program in LA, and General Mills spoke about their BMA program for graduates and internship program. Visit their websites for more information!