Ryan Dangerfield | Staff Writer | @ryandanger23
In the five years since Utah Valley University created its public relations chapter, UVU has begun to receive national attention for the public relations program.
Since UVU does not have the major selling points other areas of the nation can use when attracting conferences, UVU Public Relations Student Society of America used the convenience of the location in their proposal. Nearly all invited universities are within a four hour car ride of UVU, or a one hour flight to Salt Lake International Airport.
“Orem is not the mecca for PR,” said Sadie Nilsson, vice president of conference for UVU PRSSA. “Therefore, we do not have huge corporations to draw conferences here. However, we are offering the experience of Utah to people who not have the mountains or experiences available to them like we do.”
The theme of the regional conference will be “PR Elevated: Aspiring to New Heights” and will be held February 23-25, 2015 at UVU. Students from universities in Colorado, Wyoming, Oregon, California, Nevada, Idaho, and Arizona will be invited. There will be speakers (who will be announced at a later date) at the conference, who will help students learn more about their future careers.
The conference will include a career fair, a tour of local attractions, panels of industry professionals, speed networking, and a special faculty adviser roundtable session. PRSSA members will also have the opportunity to go up to Soldier’s Hollow, and have some fun playing in the snow with other members.
“Five years ago, a goal was set for UVU to host this conference,” said Stephen Whyte, assistant professor of communication, in a press release. “Through the combined talents and consistent work of faculty, students, PRSSA and the University administration, this national recognition is a tremendous accomplishment.
In order to participate in the conference you must be a member of PRSSA, which costs $60 annually to be a member. There are several benefits available to members, which will help repay the cost of the membership.
“It is important to have the conference held at UVU because it is a national recognized organization, and it also will put our name more on the map,” Said Nilsson.
PRSSA currently has over 120 student members, and has received several national and state awards in PR, including receiving four Golden Spike Awards and Best of Show, which is Utah’s top PR industry award.
“We want to bring credibility and visibility to the campus and to make these great strides will only help us become a better chapter, as well as overall a greater university for PR students,” said Charlie Kaing, president of UVU PRSSA.