Members of BYU-Idaho’s Public Relations Student Society of America, or PRSSA, qualified to receive the Star Chapter Award for the first time in the history of BYU-I.
“The Star Chapter Award is a distinction that Chapters of any size can earn by meeting specific Chapter and professional development goals,” according to the PRSSA Web page.
Mindy Barson, president of the PRSSA chapter at BYU-I and a senior studying communication, said she wanted to push the chapter this year to achieve this award. She said there was one time previously that students were close to acquiring the award, but that they failed to complete all of the requirements.
Barson said members of the BYU-I PRSSA needed to complete eight of ten requirements listed on the PRSSA Web page. She said BYU-I students completed the following:
- Plan and carry out a minimum of one community service project
- Strengthen relationships with the sponsor members of the Public Relations Society of America
- Focus on ethics in a chapter meeting
- See that a minimum of one chapter member applies to receive an individual National PRSSA scholarship or award
- At least one member needs to attend the National Conference, National Assembly, Regional Conference of Leadership Rally
- Receive positive attention for the PR student chapter in at least one campus or community publication or other media source
- Invite students/faculty from other majors to attend at least one of the student’s society chapter meeting
- Make sure that at least one of the PRSSA graduating seniors applied for the Public Relations Society of America Associate Membership.
Jerry Bregg, public relations director of the chapter and a senior studying communication, said that working to be eligible for the Star Chapter Award has been beneficial for him.
“In many ways, it’s let me know that I’ve chosen the right major,” he said. “It lets me know that it’s not an impossible thing for me to do.”
Bregg said his favorite requirement that was fulfilled by the chapter was their chapter meeting in which they invited students and faculty from other colleges to attend.
He said that he personally gained a new outlook on public relations during a talk given by Mark Morris, a faculty member of the business department at BYU-I.
“It was nice to see what PR can really do from a business perspective,” Bregg said.
Barson said she enjoyed the more hands-on activity.
“My favorite requirement was definitely the service project,” Barson said. “It wasn’t a sit-down meeting and allowed us to get out and get involved. It showed me how willing students are to participate in a good cause.”
Barson said that working towards the Star Chapter Award helped push her beyond her limits.
“It showed me the benefits of really enhancing your educational experience, that it’s more than just taking classes and hoping that you’ll land your dream job.” Barson said. “You have to really push yourselves in college and get involved with things that are extra-curricular that you feel like you don’t have time for, but if you make time for them, they really benefit you in the long run and help you network and help you understand your career better.”