Lessons in PR: Saying ‘No’ to Winter Break Doldrums

The New Year starts tomorrow. My New Year’s resolution? Not to waste the time I have right now.

As a PR student, I’ve learned that it is important to take advantage of down time. So, this winter break, I’m going to do just that by acquiring skills that will help me market myself as a young PR professional. Listed below are my top four goals this winter break that I hope will help me in preparing for my career. Hopefully, these goals can inspire you, too!

Winter break can be more than just hanging out in the snow. Take the time to improve your skills in PR. – Photo Credit: The Hope Scholarship blog

1)      Learn Adobe Creative Suite 6

Before the past semester, I hardly knew what InDesign was. I definitely did not know much about the other Adobe programs that exist. Thank God for college. After completing the “News Editing for Public Relations” course, I have gained a lot of insight and a huge admiration for quality design work. We dabbled with InDesign and Illustrator in class but I know that my experience merely scratches the surface of things that can be done with CS6. To accomplish this, I’m going to be utilizing these cool videos by designer Terry White on how to explore CS6 as a beginner.

2)      Perfect my online portfolio

As a PR kid, I have observed how important professional online portfolios are. Having a good, professional online presence makes a huge difference today. So, I decided to really work on mine over winter break. Even though it would be easier to create one through WordPress (I mean I have my blog here), I decided to go with Weebly. Weebly allows HTML coding freedoms that WordPress does not allow, which brings me to my next goal…

3)      Learn how to perform (basic) HTML website coding

Now, I realize this one is a bit lofty but I think it’s an important skill to work on. When I conducted research on today’s entry-level PR professionals, many have publication experiences but the individuals who are most marketable have unique skills, like website building. I think that if I start learning marketable skills like that one, it will help me in my post-graduation job search. I’m using Codecademy to get started.

4)      Create a quick but cool introductory video

This one is simply for fun. I had my first taste of making videos this semester in class and I have an itch to make more. I also think that an introductory video can provide potential employers a more personal look into who you are as a prospective employee.

These four ideas are just some of many things that I’m doing to avoid wasting winter break. You can do it, too! If you have any ideas, feel free to share them in the comments below! And check back here to see what I end up creating and completing!



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