Tag Archives: Careers

Digging Deeper

INFORMATIONAL INTERVIEW

For this assignment, I interviewed Chelsea Kuchta, a fan relations employee with the Lakeland Flying Tigers and Detroit Tigers spring training.  Although she is quite young, Chelsea has a great education and experience background as she graduated from Michigan State with majors in political science and communications. During her education, she focused mainly on interpersonal communication. In addition to her schooling, she has worked as an intern at Disney World and is planning to rejoin the Disney community relations crew after the 2010 spring training season ends. Chelsea and I are co-workers at Tigertown in Lakeland, Florida and this interview was conducted in a face-to-face manner.

What is a typical week like?
On game days, Chelsea has quite a busy schedule. Pre-game tasks include creating informational posters and finding children in the crowd to run the rosin bag to the pitcher’s mound, throw out the first pitch, and say “Play ball!” During games, she hands out promotions such as free Zaxby’s chicken meals and  BD’s Mongolian Grill coupons in between innings. On other days, Chelsea works hard in the office creating posters, organizing information into spreadsheets, and making important phone calls to sponsors.

What is a project you are especially proud of?
When Chelsea was working at Disney, she was in placed in charge of cast members in the college program. During this time, she helped the cast members create and maintain resumes. One part of this experience that she was most proud of was the fact that many of the cast members she trained were offered Disney internships after the college program.

What do you do to keep current in the PR industry?
According to Chelsea, keeping updated on trends is very important to the work of a public relations professional. To keep current in the industry, she maintains a facebook and twitter account. Furthermore, Chelsea stays updated on professional sports by following ESPN news, reading blogs, and searching for articles on the Detroit Tigers’ official website.

What do you wish you could have known before staring a career in PR?
Chelsea said that she wished she had more “hands-on” experience speaking with businesses while she was in college. She discussed how learning about how to communicate and actually communcating are two totally different things.

How important is writing in your career?
Writing is a very important part of the public relations career, especially in the areas Chelsea has worked in. At Disney, for example, she spent a huge amount of time writing emails that were professional, clear, and concise. However, she stated that verbal communication is more relavent to her job than written communication.

What are 3 tips to someone starting in public relations?
1. Be confident. No matter what the situation is, it is important to appear that you know all the answers or at least know where to look for answers.
2. Do your research. It is important to know as much information as possible about the companies or clients you are working with.
3. Ask questions. It is better to ask questions and do a job right the first time instead of not asking questions and doing it wrong.

How did your education prepare you?
The most imporant class Chelsea took to prepare her for a career in public relations was Interpersonal Communication. In this class, she learned why people communicate in different ways. For example, someone may be perceived as rude because of previous events that have occured in their life that day. People tend to carry their negative feelings onto others.

What has surprised you the most about your career?
Chelsea acknowledged that the thing that surprised her the most is the lack of communcation skills within companies. Although communication can improve, most people seem to be stuck in their ways and are not interested in change. In addition, she described how networking plays a huge deal in getting what you want as opposed to experience.

How does technology affect your daily work?
Technology is used everyday. It is important to keep up with what is happening minute-to-minute. It is important to check your email as often as possible. It is highly necessary to purchase a Blackberry so email can be checked out of the office as well. With the Tigers, Chelsea is required to use different computer programs to create promotional flyers, brochures, and other forms of media. Additionally, co-workers keep up with each other by using radios.

After my interview with Chelsea I feel like I am more likely to pursue a career in public relations. As I sit in the outfield during games, I get to watch Chelsea and her co-workers interact with the fans. I would love to make the fans’ experience an extremely memorable one. Although public relations requires a lot of work, my goal in life is to put a smile on someone else’s face. This is possible through a career in public relations.

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Spring Break ’10!

Topic of the Week 8
How I Spent My Spring Break

Do you ever have those moments where you are just blown away by the way things work out? I am definitely having one of those moments. For as long I can remember I have been a hardcore baseball fan. I absolutely love the atmosphere of a baseball stadium: the sights, the sounds, the smells – everything! Recently, after a long chain of events, I was hired as a ball girl for the Detroit Tigers spring training. That means I sit directly on the left field line, field ground balls that come my way, then hand them to children in the stands. Before the game and in between innings I have the opportunity to interact with fans who actually had to pay to get into the game. As I sit in my chair I continually think to myself, “I get paid for this!” It is seriously a dream come true!

Although being the ballgirl is a great job, its not something I want to do for the rest of my life.  As I sit in my chair I get a first hand experience of community relations within the park. I get to observe all the promotions such as “Hot Dog Row” and “Three Generation Trivia.” All of these games and giveaways are great ideas to get the crowd involved in the game on a more personal level. In addition, public relations professionals find children before each game to say those famous words “PLAY BALL!” and to run the rosin bag out to the pitcher’s mound. After the game, kids are able to run the bases and parents are able to cheer on their children while taking tons of photos.

I think I found a possible career. Even though I just love watching the game, I would love to make the game a memorable experience for the fans- something they will remember for years to come!

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Taking the Next Step

Topic of the Week 7
Resumes

15 seconds. That’s all a resume gets.  A quick glance and you are either a “possible” candidate or tossed into trash, never to be looked at again. It may seem harsh. I mean we work hard through 16+ years of eductation and achieve more than we possibly could imagine. And still, that might not be enough to get the job. Life, however, wasn’t meant to be easy. Luckily, there are ways we can catch the eye of an employer in just 15 seconds!

Utilize Resources
As mentioned in my  previous post, Overwhelmed?, Internships.com is a great site for students looking for semester or summer internships. In addition, Internships.com helps visitors create resumes quickly and organize their data. For example, with Quick Resume Builder, users fill out various information areas in education and experience such as degree, relevant course work, school projects relating to the internship, responsibilities, honors, scholarships, and leadership experience. Additional information such as foreign languages and software experience can be added as well.

For More Information
It is important for college students to keep the resume down to one page. Because you only get a 15 second glance, it is unnecessary to add an excess of information. To keep employers interested, add a link to online resume websites such as Linkedin.com.

Short and Sweet
Finally, sifting out what kind of information to add to your resume can be overwhelming. Writing Your First Resume, an article on about.com offers plenty of tips for first-time resume builders as well as a resume writing guide, resume samples, and resume templates. Here are a few tips the author, Louise Fletcher shared:

Things to include on your resume:
Positive personal characteristics
Technical and computer skills
Coursework relevant to your desired profession
Educational accomplishments (include your GPA if it’s over 3.0)
Skills and experience gained during internships or summer jobs
Other related accomplishments (design awards, recognition, winning competitions etc.)
Work History (include unpaid work if it relates to your target positions)

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Overwhelmed?

Maybe I’m a little crazy, but I can’t stop thinking about my future. One good thing about my major of journalism/public relations is that it offers me with many different types of job opportunities ranging from news colunmnist to magazine designer, human relations specialist to event planning. This wide variety of choices, however, will be my downfall. I can’t choose just one, and I don’t feel like I have enough experience in any of these categories. In fact, I don’t know what steps I take now in order to get a job. Sometimes I  need to take more action than simply trying to get my degree.

Discussing resume building and job interview tips in class got me thinking about possible internships this summer. I  wasn’t planning on applying for an internship this summer, but I feel like its time to start learning on-the-job skills. During my exploration, I discovered Internships.com.  This website helps students build their cover letters,  resumes, and reference sheets, and well as follow up letters through different blogs, videos, and programs. In addition, Internships.com offers college students the opportunity to search for thousands of internships across the nation.

Here are some  jobs that caught my eye:
ESPN Internships
ESPN Books
Turner Sports Public Relations
Publicity Intern at Urbane Imagery
Cleveland Browns Photographer
Nature Photography Intern

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Big Dreams.

Over the past two weeks in COMM 2322, Public Relations Applications, we have been touching on the basics of the public relations profession. Because I don’t really know a lot about the PR field, I began to research different PR careers that would suit my style and my talents. I love sports so I began to explore public relations in the world of professional athletics. On Women Sports Jobs.com I found three careers that are associated with PR and the duties performed in these areas:

Public Relations Director
Writing press releases
Producing publications
Organizing press box activities
Compiling and updating statistics
Web-site maintenance
Supporting the inhouse broadcasting department

Community Relations Director
Represent the interests of those who don’t keep up with the team
Works to ensure the community sees the team as an asset with media, professional teams also need people Develop bonds with the public through charity auctions/festivals 

Promotions Manager
Build an exciting atmosphere around the game
Create, plan, coordinate, execute game-day activities that attract sponsors and fans

I believe out of these three areas, promotions manager is the most attractive. I would love creating events where fans interact with the teams. For example, when I was little I met Golden glove shortstop Omar Vizquel while participating in his pre-game television show. It was a dream come true when I got to ask him my question on regionally broadcasted television. “If you could be on any other team other than the Cleveland Indians what would it be?” Omar answered, “I wouldn’t want to play anywhere else.” I talked to my role model, shook his hand, and got his autograph. It was one of the most memorable days of my life. I would love to make a child’s dream come true just as a promotions manager helped mine come true.

Cleveland's Progressive Field

Furthermore, I love the electric atmosphere of a baseball stadium or a basketball arena. Being a part of that community every day would make me one happy person! As my theology professor once said, “there is just something spiritual about walking into a stadium. The sights. The smells. The sounds. You know God is there watching.”

What direction do you want to go in the public relations profession? Sports? Politics? Fashion? Let your voice be heard 🙂

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