• Temple PRSSA

Zoom University is in full effect! Temple has now been fully remote for almost two weeks and I know I am struggling to try and keep my focus and sanity while staring at a computer screen all day. I have noticed a routine that helps me get through my week stuck inside and would like to share it with you, along with some tips.

Tip #1: Change of scenery!!

I am currently residing in my parent’s home and have my childhood bedroom as my new workspace. Staring at my Disney princess wallpaper all day can get very tiring. I take my classes in my room then do my homework outside to get outside. If you have somewhere to go other than your room for work, do it! A new workspace helps so much with my focus.

Tip #2: Take a break!!

For me, junior year has been my most stressful yet. I am constantly looking for assignments to complete and emails to respond to. While schoolwork is important, it is also extremely important to give yourself a break. Reward yourself! Go for a walk! See a friend (socially distanced of course). Go for a drive if you have your driver’s license! Driving around my hometown blasting music always takes me back to my childhood and escapes the reality of school for a tiny bit. It has also helped to clear my mind.

Tip #3: Focus on your mental health!!

As one who is struggling with anxiety, it is not fun and can take over your entire day. It is so so important to put your mental health first. If you need a mental health day, TAKE ONE! I promise you one day of relaxation will not hurt. It will help you in the following days to take care of yourself first.

Tip #4: Reach out to me if you are struggling!!

I am always here to help you guys and love chit-chatting with you all. Tell me about your day, your significant other, family, friends, I want to hear it all!

I hope this helps you guys a little bit as ZoomU is taking over. Stay safe and healthy!

This blog post was written by Kali Lauer, Treasurer

This past Tuesday, September 14th, Temple PRSSA welcomed Klein, PRSSA and PRowl alumnus (KLN ‘14) Ransford Whaumbush of Gregory FCA. Ransford detailed his journey to PR at Temple (then Strategic Communications), along with what attracted him to Pennsylvania's largest full-service public relations firm.

Ransford is the Business Development & Marketing Specialist at Gregory FCA, striving to onboard clients in esports, gaming, real estate, consumer tech, cybersecurity, healthcare and financial service. He works with internal marketing and brand initiatives in terms of social media and marketing campaigns. Some of the firm’s most notable clients include Allianz, Scuf Gaming, Orion and the Philly-based Nerd St. Gamers. Additionally, he is helping spearhead the Diversity and Inclusion task force at Gregory FCA, whose goal is to bring diverse candidates into the PR field.

Once a college junior studying business, Ransford was drawn to PR because of its versatility: PR practitioners are necessary in any field, be it sports, healthcare or non-profit organizations. During his final year at Temple he made the jump to PR, citing it as one of the best decisions he has ever made.

Following his time at Temple, Ransford was a part of PECO’s Corporate Relations department. With PECO he focused on advertisement coordination and sponsorship distribution while working closely with Philadelphia's famous companies: The Philadelphia 76ers, The Philadelphia Eagles, Comcast and Wells Fargo. He was also involved in Philly’s biggest events including the 2015 Papal Visit and the 2016 Democratic National Convention.

What attracted Ransford to Gregory FCA was how the firm’s president and founder, Greg Matusky, values his employees. The sweeping expansion of the Top 50 firm into digital marketing and relations, web development and Executive Visibility captivated him even further. The most recent advancements that Ransford emphasized were video and podcasting, along with influencer relations. With the incorporation of a ‘here and now’ studio in the firm’s basement, digital content can be easily and quickly shot, produced and released. Also in the digital world, Gregory FCA has coordinated influencer partnerships with the likes of Jessica Alba and Marques Brownlee.

Aligned with Gregory FCA’s mission to make sure the world knows that its national and international clients are changing the world, Ransford brought bold and integrated stories to the forefront of Temple PRSSA members’ minds.

This blog post was written by Caitlin McGeehan, Digital Publications Editor.

We’re all spending a lot of time inside right now, which means many of us are watching Netflix more than ever. I’m obviously no director, but when producers want a lucrative project, I’m guessing a PR-centric story doesn’t always come to mind (which may be intentional). Or maybe that’s because public relations can mean a lot of things, and some producers aren’t fully aware they’re writing about it. Whatever the case, here are five Netflix programs about PR elements that you can watch right now.

1. The Rum Diary

The Rum Diary is based on Hunter S. Thompson’s novel of the same name. Johnny Depp plays a struggling author named Paul who moves to Puerto Rico to work for a dying newspaper company and finds inspiration for his writing. When Paul is befriended by a shady land developer named Sanderson (Aaron Eckhart) and asked to publish ads for his real estate scam, he is forced into an ethical dilemma that offers valuable lessons for PR practitioners.

2. The Social Network

The Social Network is about computer coding, a couple multi-million dollar lawsuits, and the crumbling friendship between Facebook’s co-creators: Mark Zuckerberg (Jesse Eisenberg) and Eduardo Saverin (Andrew Garfield). However, underneath all of that lies heavy strategic and PR planning as the Facebook brand grows. Throughout the film, the FB team deals with various scandals, though none quite as bad as the Cambridge-Analytica data leak in early 2018.

I love this movie. If you haven’t seen it yet, you need to do yourself a favor and watch (and quickly too, because it’s scheduled to be removed from Netflix Sept. 30th).

3. Chappaquiddick

“We tell them the truth. . . or at least our version of it.” Chappaquiddick is a biopic about former senator Ted Kennedy and the ensuing public scandal of a fatal drunk driving accident he caused in 1969. Like The Rum Diary, this film heavily deals with ethics in PR, as Senator Ted’s advisors will stop at nothing to salvage his image. Prepare to watch a preventable political crisis unfold as U.S. history is changed forever. If you’re interested in a movie that depicts PR’s role in politics and/or legal teams, look no further.

4. Bojack Horseman

To write about one of my favorite shows of all time is sort of a dream come true.

Bojack Horseman is an animated, six-season Netflix original released in 2014. It’s about an anthropomorphic and alcohol-dependent horse (stay with me here) named Bojack who is trying to reignite his acting career after spending decades out of the limelight. BH is perhaps best known for its poignant portrayal of depression, addiction, and Hollywood’s dark side.

However, its depiction of professional communication is often overlooked by audiences. One of the side characters, Princess Carolyn, is both the talent agent and on-again, off-again love interest of Bojack and thus deals with his wrongdoings on a public and interpersonal level. However, she also struggles with her own issues, such as familial and romantic loneliness. In the workplace, she competes with rival talent agent Vanessa Gecko for clients and recognition. She is a character that is easy to become emotionally invested in as you learn about PR.

I highly recommend Bojack Horseman if you’re a fan of adult animation, drama, and animal puns (of which there are countless). Its humor is dark but not crude, and characters find themselves in situations that cannot be adequately described with the word ‘absurd.’ But above all else, this show’s unique portrayal of mental illness, addiction, self-destructive behavior and all of their nuances gives way to an important discussion, and has helped me cope with my own demons. Do not be fooled for a moment by this show’s colorful, seemingly kid-friendly animation. This show can get very dark, and may trigger some viewers.

5. Mad Men

(OK so this one was recently taken off Netflix. However, it can be found on Amazon Prime)

Mad Men tells the story of advertising agent Don Draper and co.’s complicated lives in 1960s-era New York. In its seven-season duration, Mad Men won numerous TV accolades including the Emmy for Outstanding Actor in a Drama Series in 2015 (Jon Hamm) and Outstanding Drama Series in 2011. Any PR scholar may benefit from familiarizing themselves with the advertising field, and it just so happens one of the best dramas of all time focuses on just that.

This blog post was written by Matthew Robinson, Digital Committee Member

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