So you wanna be in public relations?

I don't think i've mentioned this here before but i got an email two weeks ago saying i've got accepted into my second option major i.e. television - video major.

I'm actually happy about this even though it was my second option major. My first option was to major in public relations which was one of the most popular major in communication studies but because i didn't get the minimum required score to get into that major, i was pushed into my second option. To begin with, i didn't really want to major in public relations because i've thoroughly enjoyed my video papers during my first and second year. So why did i put public relations in the first place if it's not what i wanted to do?
Cause the asian side of me tells me to...
I was thinking more about "investing" in my tuition fees. Prior to me choosing my major, a lot of people always finish up the sentence about studying public relations with "...there's where all the money's at" so being asian-minded, of course i would want to invest my myself in getting a degree with some public relations experience. But then again, i remembered i once told people about chasing their dreams even if the money isn't worth it cause by the end of the day, that is what they'll be doing for the next few decades of their lives. So there i was thinking if i should just blindly go with majoring in something that i enjoy doing but possibly struggling to get a job in or if i should enrol in something i know that will pay off (in terms of salary wise) when i get the job in that line.

That's when the whole options came quite handily. Just to make my conscience feel better, i decide to enrol in public relations as my first major option. The only scary part for me was that i have no knowledge of what public relations is all about so if i do end up getting in that major, i might have just screwed myself for the rest of my life doing something that i might not like or have no clue just because people say that's where the money's at. The hopeful part of it is i may actually enjoy and do well with it and if that was the case, everything might just go smoothly for me.

So start of second semester this year, i had the first taste of what public relations was all about. As much as how the media would like to make it look all glamour to be a public relation specialists (damn you Spin Crowd!), it can get quite tiring. As i was only studying the basics of public relations, i don't think i'm fit to actually tell you what life being in the public relations field is all about but if you do plan on venturing into it, you'll need some of these criteria to get somewhere.

1. Be thick skinned
(if you're the owner of this face, sorry but i googled thick skinned and this popped up!)
Or in a more nicer way to put it, confidence. You'll have to do many things, some you might not even want to but because your clients want it or the company requires you to, you got no choice. It also depends on which part of public relations you're in as there's different roles for different companies.

2. Be a people person. 
The word "awkward" is definitely not in your dictionary. Being in this field requires you to meet different people and chances are you will have to mingle & jingle with them. If you have low self esteem or if you're a shy person, you might find yourself struggling hard being in this field.

3. Be creative
You might/will be involve with planning events or trying to boost the name of the company you're working for through all sort of methods.  You will constantly be needed to think about events and ideas to make that happen. Originality is definitely a plus because nobody wanna see or use something that's been done before.

4. Networking
I believe this is one of the most crucial criteria you need to have in order to be outstanding in the public relations field. As you'll need key people to get around to completing your task, the more people you know, the easier your job is gonna be.

Well those are the four main things i picked up after studying public relations for a semester. Of course there's a lot more other stuffs to learn if you do end up getting into a major especially with the practical part of it such as writing news releases, proposing an event to a company, doing the event for the company, etc. but for me, i definitely felt like it is not my cup of tea in terms of career wise. I am however glad that i at least gave it a try and sadly, my best wasn't good enough to get me into the major in my final year. I'm not sure if it's any different in the real world outside university but if somehow i do get an offer for a position in a public relations field, i won't say i'll turn it down. I'm still unsure what my career path is going to be like after i graduate from university now that i know that i will be majoring in video production.

So what exactly will i be doing with this major? To summarise it in a sentence, i'd say there's gonna be lots of filming and editing. I do aim to do at least one documentary film before i die though since i am majoring in this area now but in terms of my own career, i don't know what sort of job i've got lined up for me. But since i've still got a full year to go, i'm gonna keep dreaming and focus on being the next asian Peter Jackson or Steven Spielberg with my major in 2011! No harm in dreaming big i suppose.

How about you guys? Are you guys working in a completely different field after graduating from college/university and how has life been for you?


gideon said…
Don't go searching for money, let money come search for you:) i forgot who told me that but it's something that I've always thought off as very wise. Anyway, Ron as long as you love doing it, you're gonna get good at it and when you're good at it, the money comes in haha. I think video production is a great field anyway and when you become totally successful, at least you won't be doing a desk 9-5 job like me hehe.
ronckk said…
Money come! Money come! Hahaha. Wise words my friend. :)

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