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Public Relations - A Career for people with people skills

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A public relations degree is one of the best ways for people with good ''people skills'' who enjoy working on different projects and communicating with people. Most colleges today offer an undergraduate degree in communications with an emphasis in public relations. Students who major in communications also take journalism or broadcasting as their subject of emphasis. These two fields are also related to public relations and students from one major often parlay their career into the other two fields.

Majoring in public relations requires being able to write well as well as taking several marketing classes. The major is very much a project driven major. Students have to complete several projects in their junior and senior years. These projects include analyzing marketing campaigns of companies. In fact, getting cooperation from the companies in making a good report itself is a good exercise for the students. Students are also expected to create marketing and public relations campaigns for various organizations. These are usually the smaller, local firms in the city who usually do not have fulltime marketing/ communications department or a dedicated employee for these campaigns.

Public relations majors have to take journalism classes because they do have to write press releases, feature stories and related marketing material for their organization. They are expected to maintain a good working relationship with journalists. Public relations jobs usually pay more than entry-level journalism jobs. But the key to landing a well paying public relations job is landing a good internship. Completing an internship at a major firm is almost a guarantee that the student will get a good PR job when he graduates.



The BLS estimates that there were about 275,000 public relations specialists in 2008. Most of them work in advertising and related media industries. But several are employed in healthcare and government organizations, financial firms and even universities. All these types of organizations need big public relations staff to handle year round public awareness campaigns as well as deal with the media in times of crisis.
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