The GVSU Advertising and Public Relations program celebrated that March is Women’s History Month by hosting an event specifically for young women beginning their career in communications. On March 15, Pop Up Pedagogy addressed the “myths, mystiques, and mandatories” that come with being a woman in communications and the professional world.
CJ DeVries, Owner and Operator of GRNow and Owner of Innovative Social Exchange, and Julie Lankes, Creative Director and CEO at BOXBOOM Creative, collaborated as hosts for the evening out of a desire to help young women just starting their professional lives. The hosts expressed they were once in that position, too, and wished they had received this kind of guidance as a student.
The event addressed some of the challenges women face in the professional realm that men don’t, as well as tips for making a good impression and working effectively.
As with other Pop Up Pedagogy events, this was an interactive workshop. Seven female communications professionals (listed below) were seated among the students in attendance. DeVries and Lankes shared insights and advice from their own experience before presenting a break-out topic for conversation at the individual tables.
Some topics of discussion included:
- What makes you memorable?
- Practice your handshake!
- Learn to accept a compliment
- Advice for interview attire
“The goal I had with this event was to bring in a bunch of successful and wonderful women from many different backgrounds and jobs to meet students and share what they’ve experienced, as well as be mentors for students,” said student Kelly Darcy, who assisted Professor Frank Blossom as the project manager for the event.
What made the event so powerful was the spirit of mentorship and camaraderie built by the roundtable discussions throughout the night. It exemplified the aphorism “Empowered women empower women.”
Students who weren’t able to attend can still benefit from wisdom that was shared. A film crew was on hand to capture footage from the evening for a video, and a booklet is being created with the information discussed. Lankes suggested setting up a Facebook group where female professionals and students could continue dialogue based on the themes covered at the event. Students who would like to be part of this group can email firstname.lastname@example.org with their interest.
Check out #APRSpeaker on Twitter for more insights and quotations from this and other APR events. A Facebook Live stream of the Pop Up Pedagogy event is available on the GVSU Advertising and Public Relations Facebook page. (Link to video: Facebook LiveStream video
Thank you to these professionals who contributed to the evening’s discussions and shared their time and experience with GVSU students.
- CJ DeVries – Owner and Operator of GRNow and Owner of Innovative Social Exchange
- Julie Lankes – Creative Director and CEO of BOXBOOM Creative
- Ashlea Souffrou – Owner of Retegrity Solutions and VP of Sales for H-Source
- Taylor Vanderveen – Lead Designer at BOXBOOM Creative
- Amy Carroll – Owner, Amy Carroll Photography & Print Shop
- Michelle Steffes – President of IPV Consulting, Founder of EQUIP Group Coaching, and Co-Founder & President of the GR Business Breakfast
- Shelley Irwin – Host/Producer for WGVU Morning Show, WGVU TV Ask the Expert, Community Connection
- Dawn Baker – Show Manager at ShowSpan
- Meochia Nochi Thompson – Author, Consultant, Publisher, and owner of Blessed Pen Ink, Corp