The Student News Site of Grand Valley State University

Grand Valley Lanthorn

The Student News Site of Grand Valley State University

Grand Valley Lanthorn

The Student News Site of Grand Valley State University

Grand Valley Lanthorn

GV PR organizations emphasize networking, education beyond the classroom

Courtesy | GrandPR

Grand Valley State University’s chapter of Public Relations Student Society of America (GVPRSSA) and GrandPR, GVSU’s first and only student-run integrated communications firm, collaborate with the aim of helping students build professional networks and work through real-life situations while in college. 

According to their website, GVPRSSA focuses on “preparing students for their future careers in the public relations and communications industry.” 

For many students, the organization serves as a way to network and jumpstart their careers while in college and prepare them for the future. 

“Since joining PRSSA and being more involved, I have seen a growth academically. I feel I am learning things that I have not yet learned in the classroom,” said Alexandra Lucaj, vice president of GVPRSSA membership services.

Lucaj said the community aspect GVPRSSA brings has been essential to her experience at the organization. She was also able to land an internship with the West Michigan Whitecaps through networks she gained within the organization.

“No one is there to judge, no one is there to be mean or selfish, everyone is there to help one another,” Lucaj said. “Everyone is there to just give their kindness and I think that’s just what’s so important about a community. A group of people who are willing to network you with others.” 

Recently, a few students from the GVPRSSA organization took a trip to Los Angeles from Feb. 4-7. The event was hosted and sponsored by the National Millennial and Gen Z Community (NMGZ).

Emma Buschle, CEO of Grand PR was one of the students on the trip. 

The purpose of the NMGZ trip to LA this past week was to visit corporate and agency offices in the Los Angeles region to discuss the work they do and offer our Gen Z perspective,” Buschle said. “The mission of NMGZ is to create a safe environment for the free exchange of ideas and to place greater emphasis on building awareness and understanding. It also functions to provide networking opportunities for a diverse group of students who otherwise might not be exposed to larger city networks and opportunities.”

The organization emphasizes real life learning and helping their members experience different aspects of the PR and Advertising world. 

Later this month, GVPRSSA will make a trip to Chicago for the PRSSA District Midwest Conference “PRess Play” at DePaul University. During the trip, the organization will explore the city while learning about how different touring agencies handle PR. 

Aside from the various trips the organization makes, they also meet in collaboration with GrandPR every other Thursday. During some of these meetings, the organizations come together to bring in guest speakers, while other meetings are used to continue making connections between members.

While the organizations have had a lot of success in years past, members hope to further grow their numbers and to continue to help students with their public relations careers. 

“I hope that GVPRSSA continues to thrive as a student organization and provide meaningful, real-world professional development opportunities for students in the Ad/PR program and similar programs,” Buschle said.

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