Speaker Recap: Diversity Workshop with Professors Lauren Bullock and David Brown
This past Tuesday, October 13, Temple PRSSA welcomed Temple University professors Lauren Bullock and David Brown of the Klein College of Media and Communication for a diversity workshop on the importance of “finding your place in PR.” Professor Bullock and Professor Brown were also joined by Temple PRSSA faculty advisor, Professor Gregg Feistman, and Director of Disability Resources and Services, Andrea Vassar.
Professor Brown began the workshop by briefly addressing Temple PRSSA’s chapter with the message of finding one’s own passions in PR and following personal interests in a professional career.
Professor Bullock transitioned into describing what PR is and is not, as well as the many different avenues of careers within the field of public relations-- media relations, crisis management, research and enterprise, and event management. Professor Bullock advocated the importance of utilizing one’s own skills and passions when searching for a career path in PR, accompanied by her own anecdotes about her past experience working in athletic administration at the University of Texas at Austin and Florida State University.
Professor Feistman shared his experiences within the PR field, from his change in major while in college to his various professional roles. Professor Feistman detailed his academic transition from journalism, to broadcasting, and finally to public relations. He also described his career shifts from theater communications, to agency work, to individual client relations. Professor Feistman echoed Professor Bullock’s advice that skills and personal passions can and should be utilized when finding a career in public relations.
Last to speak was Andrea Vassar of Temple University’s Disability Resources and Services Center. Vassar spoke on the importance of advocacy in the workplace for both yourself and others. She described the importance of valuing disability within a diverse environment, emphasizing that disability accommodations need to go farther than the classroom. She also highlighted the importance of person-first language when discussing a person with a disability, and how it is essential to respect someone’s lived experiences. Vassar added to Professor Bullock and Professor Feistman’s messages on following passions by reminding students that in a career as broad as PR, there are ways to follow personal passions while helping others and working in a wide range of professional fields.
It was truly refreshing to hear from these professionals about how they progressed to their current positions in PR, as well as reminding the chapter that there is strength in differences.
This blog post was written by Anne Cleary, Director of Community Service.