|Public relations major Meghan Kanter|
What encouraged you to apply to Grady College?
In high school, I was involved in my school's newspaper committee and knew that I had a strong interest in journalism and communications. However, when I began my college search, I visited UGA simply because it seemed like a fun school. I quickly learned during my campus tour that UGA had one of the top journalism schools in the country which solidified my interest in the university. At that point, I had no idea that attending UGA and applying for Grady College would become into two of my best decisions so far.
What activities were you involved in at Grady/UGA/Athens?
At UGA, I have been involved with PRSSA since sophomore year. As the world's largest PRSSA chapter, there are so many opportunities to become involved. I participated in Creative Consultants during my sophomore and junior years. I also served on PRSSA's social media committee and on the social media committee for ADPR Connection. This year, I served as one of the two co-directors of ADPR Connection. In addition to my involvement in PRSSA, I have also been an active member of my sorority. I served as Registrar for Kappa Kappa Gamma for one year and as a recruitment counselor for Panhellenic recruitment for two years.
What kinds of internships or work were you been involved in, and what were your responsibilities?
For the past year, I have served as one of two public relations interns at BLAST900 Athens, a fitness studio franchise. I helped develop a public relations plan for this studio upon its opening in February, maintained its social media presence, launched several campaigns and pitched to media. This past summer, I interned with Porter Novelli in Washington, D.C. under the Digital and Consumer Marketing teams. This was my first glimpse into agency life, and it was an incredibly enriching experience. I learned something new every single day and gained confidence in my abilities. I am now certain that I want to work in a public relations agency.
What were the best parts of these experiences?
At Porter Novelli, I was provided with the perfect balance of responsibility and support from my supervisors, and I definitely did not feel like "just an intern." I was able to participate in brainstorm sessions and even write content for clients' social media pages. Having the opportunity to work on projects for many different clients taught me to how to prioritize and balance my time carefully.
What part of your Grady experience (classes, professors, etc.) has been helpful in your internship or work experiences?
Dr. Betty Jones has been an incredible mentor and resource for me, and I honestly have no idea what I would have done without her over the past year. As the faculty advisor for PRSSA, she encouraged me to go on the Washington, D.C. agency tour, which is how I got my internship with Porter Novelli. Dr. Jones also chose me to co-direct ADPR Connection which helped me build my professional network and improve as a leader and event planner. She is now helping me in my job search, and I cannot thank her enough for her support.
What advice would you give to someone who is considering pursuing an Ad/PR program?
You get out what you put in. Choose an organization or two related to your studies and get involved. By getting involved with organizations like PRSSA, AdClub, IABC and others, you begin meeting other students who will one day become your colleagues. It really is important to start building a network early and making these connections. The students I have met through PRSSA have become some of my best friends, and I know that our paths will cross again after college. Also, the more that you do for the organization, the more it will you do for you when it comes time to apply for jobs.
What are your career goals and interests?
I plan to begin my career at a public relations agency and work hard to produce great work for my clients. I am not sure exactly where life will take me and if I will stay in an agency, move into corporate or non-profit PR or something completely different, but I do know that I want to always be learning and improving. If I ever find myself in a position where I am not bettering myself professionally and personally, then I know I should probably look into other opportunities.