Lansdale Named First Recipient of Chapman Scholarship

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Vanessa Lansdale

A new scholarship named in honor of a former Advertising and Public Relations professor has its first recipient.

Vanessa Lansdale will receive the first $1200 scholarship from the Frederick A. Chapman Memorial Public Relations Scholarship Fund.

The scholarship fund was set up with a large initial gift from the family of Fred Chapman in his memory. Chapman, who taught in the Advertising and Public Relations program at GVSU from 1991-2001, passed away in 2013. The scholarship reached full funding last year after a fundraising drive involving current faculty and alumni. The scholarship is for students going into a career in public relations and dedicated to community service.

Before his ten years of teaching at GVSU, Chapman was involved in numerous activities

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Fred Chapman

that combined his love of public relations and service. . He spent 36 years in corporate advertising and public relations. He was heavily involved in community service, in which he served numerous positions for various organizations, including local government.

Lansdale represents the qualities the scholarship is designed to support. She is an excellent student, and is very involved outside of the classroom. She is Director of Alumni Relations for PRSSA, a member of the GVSU American Marketing Association, and on the Laker Traditions Team. An APR major with minors in photography and nonprofit administration, she also volunteered her services to take photos for the APR program blog and annual report.

Of campus, Lansdale has been active in community service as well. She is a Springhill Teen Service Volunteer, a vacation Bible school teacher, and a volunteer at Woman at Risk, International.

“Through my major, minors, extracurricular activities, and community service, I have found my passion for nonprofits, public relations, digital marketing, and photography,” Lansdale said of her career goals. “I plan to use these skills to start my own company and provide assistance to nonprofits in the West Michigan community, thus allowing more awareness to be brought to their causes. Using my skills, I plan to give a voice to those who do not have one.”

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GVSU Ad/PR Program Gets Involved With Page Society

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Dr. Tim Penning in New York.

The GVSU Advertising and Public Relations program recently become more involved with the prestigious Arthur W. Page Society when a professor became a member and a group of students placed in the organization’s annual case study competition. Both happened April 5 in New York City at the Page Society Spring Seminar.

Timothy Penning, PhD, APR, a professor of advertising and public relations in the School of Communications at Grand Valley State University, has been named a member of the Arthur W. Page Society (www.awpagesociety.com).

The Arthur W. Page Society is a professional association for senior public relations and corporate communications executives who seek to enrich and strengthen their profession. Members are nominated by current members and must be approved by the board. Penning is one of a group of university faculty who are part of the elite organization.

“It’s a real privilege for me to be a part of this group of communications professionals,” Penning said. “Members are the top communications professionals in the largest organizations in the world, who directly counsel the CEOs. I teach that PR is a management function, and these select group of professionals practice it. I hope to learn much from interacting with them.”

Penning added that his association with the Page Society will also benefit students in the GVSU Advertising and Public Relations program as he brings current practice and insights from professionals into the classroom. It may also lead to high-profile guest speakers and networking.

Penning is a former journalist and public relations professional who started teaching full time at GVSU in 2001. In addition to his teaching and research, he is the coordinator of the Advertising and Public Relations program.

Meanwhile, a group of GVSU Ad and PR students placed third in the Case Study Competition in Corporate Communications.

The Case Study Competition in Corporate Communications, which is sponsored by the

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The GVSU student team is honored as third place winners in the case study competition at the annual dinner in New York.

Arthur W. Page Society and the Institute for Public Relations (IPR), awards students whose original case studies best examine the practice of corporate communications in a business issue or crisis. This year’s competition drew 105 entries from 36 communications and business schools across the country.

Students on the Grand Valley team included Aaron Robert, Brianna Olson, Brooklyn Wilson, and Erin Stehlik. Adrienne Wallace was the faculty advisor. Their case was about Target’s transgender bathroom policy. Teams from DePaul University claimed first and second place.

“This case study competition truly challenges students to take a 360-degree view of how communicating around a program or issue can have a significant impact on the overall business of an organization,” said Dr. Tina McCorkindale, President and CEO of IPR. “Winning this highly-competitive award is a great honor.”

The annual competition is judged by a panel comprising Page Society members and members of Page Up, a membership organization for senior-level communicators who have the potential to rise to a CCO or another executive role.

“I am very proud of my team for working this hard outside the classroom,” said Aaron Robert. “To compete and place alongside graduate students nationwide is a testament to our worth ethic and knowledge of public relations. We are honored to represent the GVSU APR program on a national level.”

Alumni Thrive in Travel PR

Travel and tourism public relations is something taught in the Fundamentals of Public Relations course at GVSU, and it comes up in several other courses. It’s just one of many speciality areas of practice within public relations and advertising. The Public Relations Society of America (PRSA) even has a Travel and Tourism Special Interest Section.

So it was interesting that two alumni who have made careers in travel and tourism popped up in recent media.

Dave Nitkiewicz (2007), the Specialty Markets Sales Manager at Experience Grand Rapids, was featured in a recent episode of the ‘PR Hangover’ podcast.

Then, Brandy Henderson (2010), was mentioned in a Grand Rapids Business Journal article about Ludington tourism. Henderson started doing PR for Ludington and is now the executive director of the Ludington Area Convention and Visitors Bureau.

These are just two examples of how a degree in Advertising and PR can lead to good jobs in the travel and tourism industry.

Alumni Go From Campus to Capitol

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Rachel Doane, Rep. Roger Victory, and Jared Rozycki in the chamber of the Michigan House of Representatives.

Rachel Doane and Jared Rozycki have gone from the GVSU campus in Allendale to the state capitol in Lansing. Both graduates of the Advertising and Public Relations program, Doane (2013) and Rozycki (2017) now work together as communication advisors in the Michigan House of Representatives.

Doane works on the Health Policy Committee and Tourism & Outdoor Recreation Committee. Rozycki covers the Military and Veterans Affairs, Oversight, and Insurance committees.

Doane says her job is to ensure the public is informed of the legislative activity that happens in the committees for which she is responsible at every state of the process–bill introduction, committee testimony, House passage, and ultimately, signage by the governor. In addition to  writing press releases and drafting speeches for legislators, she said joining committee members for visits around the state is a fantastic part of her job.

“I’ve joined the committee at Muskegon Winter Sports Complex, The Henry Ford Museum, Art Prize, and even had the opportunity to try out and electric bicycle when the committee was considering a bill that would allow the use of e-bikes on state trails.” Doane said. “I tag along with the representatives to take photos of the committee proceedings and include them in my press release about the research the committee is doing to further Michigan’s tourism industry. “

Rozycki’s work is similar for his committees and legislators. He also handles media relations, writing and pitching op-eds, working with journalists to set up TV interviews, and organizaing press conferences.

“I write for all 63 representatives of the Republican Caucus,” Rozyci said. “It definitely took a while to get a hold of all 63 of their voices in my writing – especially since some are really conservative while others are moderate.”

Both credit internships as a key to them landing their current jobs. In the summer of 2016, Rozycki was an intern in the Constituent Relations division of the Executive Office of Governor Rick Snyder during the crest of the Flint Water Crisis. In the winter of 2017, he interned at Truscott Rossman – a PR firm that specializes in grassroots issues – at their Grand Rapids branch.

“Through all of the connections I made at both internships, I was able to apply to the job where I am at today,” Rozycki said.

Doane, who had several other jobs before landing in her current position, also remembers the media relations writing class and the newsreporting class as setting her up for what she does at work today.

“Now I know that if you want to write effective press releases, you really have to know how to think like a journalist if you want the media to have any interest in your content,” Doane said.

Rozycki also expressed appreciation for media relations writing and the various types of writing he learned in the class, as well as the ability to pitch story ideas and op-eds to journalists.

“There are some days where I write 3 op-eds or 35 press releases within the work day,” he said. “CAP 321 (media relations writing) helped prepare me to write quickly but effectively. Sometimes in government PR, there isn’t 45 minutes to finish a press release or op-ed, there is only 5 minutes. Politics is very opinionated, so op-eds are more frequent in government than other avenues in PR. CAP 321 helped with how to pitch as well. Because of the pitching techniques I learned, many of the the op-eds I have written have been covered in big-time publications such as the Detroit News, MLive, Detroit FREEP, Crain’s Detroit Business as well as getting press releases in nearly every Michigan publication and some in Wisconsin and Ohio publications.”

In addition to internships and classes, Doane and Rozycki both have advice for current students interested in careers in PR and government. Rozycki stresses paying careful attention to the news. Doane, who minored in political science, credits that and some advanced knowledge of the political process with helping her to get and succeed in her job.

Frederick A. Chapman: Awarding Public Relations Students

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Scholarships are very helpful for students as they make their way through their higher education. Of course, everyone wants to avoid graduating with loads of debt! Students are grateful to receive assistance in any way. However, when scholarships are available for all different students, the competition can be tough. This being said, GVSU’s Public Relations students have a wonderful opportunity to apply for a scholarship that is specific to them.

The GVSU School of Communications and Advertising and Public Relations department are proud to announce The Frederick A. Chapman Memorial Public Relations Scholarship! This scholarship is in honor of former Grand Valley professor, Frederick Chapman, who taught at GVSU from 1991 to 2001.

The scholarship is for full time undergraduate juniors and seniors in the School of Communications with a declared major in Advertising and Public Relations. Applicants must have a Public Relations emphasis and also have an interest in community service. They must be accepted or currently enrolled at GVSU and have a GPA of at least 3.2. In the application, students are asked to describe their career goals in Public Relations as well as describe their commitment to community service. The award varies, is not renewable, and financial aid may be considered but is not required.

Students can log in and apply for the scholarship here. The deadline to apply is March 1st, 2018, so start your application as soon as possible!

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Before his ten years of teaching at GVSU, Chapman was involved in numerous different activities. He spent 36 years in corporate advertising and public relations. He was heavily involved in community service, in which he served numerous positions for various organizations. After his passing in 2013, his family members, colleagues, and alumni generously contributed to this scholarship fund in his honor. Without their help, this scholarship would not be possible for our students.

 

We’d love to keep this scholarship available for our students in the future! If you’d like to donate to the fund, please go to the APR website. You can donate under the Give Today box. Any size donation is appreciated.

Frederick Chapman’s contribution to GVSU’s Advertising and Public Relations Department is greatly appreciated. In addition to the scholarship, the lounge area that’s outside of the APR faculty offices in Lake Superior Hall has been named “Chapman Corner” in his honor where you can find a street sign with his name.

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For more information about Chapman’s life, please click here.

Alumna Uses PR Skills to Start Detroit Bridal Shop

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Lori Conerly

Written by APR student Gabrielle Guglielmetti

A recent Grand Valley alumna has helped spread the “Laker Effect” all the way to Michigan’s east side with the opening of her very own bridal boutique. Lori Conerly is a 22-year-old who graduated in 2016 with a bachelor’s degree from Grand Valley State University having majored in both Communications Srudies and Advertising and Public Relations.. She is originally from Detroit and decided to make her home city the home to her new business, LeeAnn’s Luxury Bridal Boutique.

Conerly got her experience in the bridal industry from working as an assistant manager at a bridal shop in Grand Rapids during college. She combined her experience within the industry and her knowledge of Ad and PR in order to support her vision for LeeAnn’s Luxury Bridal Boutique.

Growing up in Detroit, Conerly noticed that there were no bridal shops actually in the city, forcing brides to have to travel far distances in order to find their perfect dress. This makes the wedding process for Detroit brides inconvenient and hectic, when it should be a fun and happy time for them.

Conerly also wanted to help contribute to the rebuilding of a better Detroit, since she

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The store front of Lee Anne’s bridal boutique.

knows so many people have a negative perception of the city and don’t see it for all the culture and innovation it provides. While she was growing up, Conerly got to experience all the great things the city has to offer and is now helping increase those things with the opening of her boutique.

All of these things helped spark Conerly’s idea to create a bridal shop in the heart of Michigan’s east side, so that Detroit brides can have the convenience of finding their dream dress in their hometown.

Conerly said she uses just about everything she learned from her classes to help run her business. She explained that the campaigns she created in her classes as an undergrad were especially helpful in every step of creating her business plan.

Conerly also said that she saved a lot of money because she didn’t have to hire a PR or advertising firm to help promote her business. She was able to create her own press releases, media kits and promotional material due to the skills she learned from her classes.

“I think a lot of times people undermine having an APR (Advertising and Public Relations) degree because they don’t know exactly what it is or what all it entails,” Conerly explained. “But having this degree has absolutely, without a doubt prepared me and laid the framework for me to be able to start this business. APR is all about planning, preparing, timeliness, and consciousness… everything that you really need to start and operate a business.”

Conerly said that one thing she wished she would have done if she could go back would be to start planning and preparing her business while she was still in college. She would have started saving money, stocking her inventory and started creating her business plan even before she graduated, to give herself a head start.

Conerly has helped bring the “Laker Effect” back home to Detroit with her after graduation. Her personal mission and vision, combined with the knowledge she gained from Grand Valley, helped drive her to establish her very own business and start impacting lives, one bride at a time.

Recent Grad Named PRSSA Gold Key Winner

Jaclyn Ermoyan, a 2017 graduate of the GVSU Advertising and Public Relations Program, has earned the PRSSA National Gold Key Award. The award goes to students who excel in their academic study of public relations, have pursued ambitious professional development opportunities and are leaders in their PRSSA Chapter. It is the highest individual honor given by the national organization.

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Ermoyan speaks at the WMPRSA Awards after being named PR Student of the Year.

In May, Ermoyan was honored by the West Michigan Chapter of the Public Relations Society of America (WMPRSA) as its Student of the Year for 2017.

While at Grand Valley, Ermoyan served as the CEO of the award-winning, student-run public relations firm GrandPR, which is a part of the GVSU chapter of the Public Relations Student Society of America (PRSSA). In this role, she managed a team of more than 25 students and various projects for community clients. As the CEO of GrandPR, Ermoyan participated in the 2016 Public Relations Student Society of America’s National Conference as a panelist and expert in student-run firm processes, organizational structure, retention and success.

Ermoyan also went beyond the APR major to be involved in the GVSU community. She was a co-creator of Humans of Grand Valley in 2013, which shares Laker experiences and aims to encourage a strong sense of community on campus. Ermoyan was also an integral part of planning the TEDxGVSU event in February. She was the 2017 recipient of the Thomas M. Seykora Award for Outstanding Contribution to the Campus Community.

During her time at Grand Valley, Ermoyan gained professional experience working in University Communications, the Career Center and University Development, and participated in the Cook Leadership Academy. She is currently doing a post-graduate internship at Quicken Loans.