PR Plan

50 things before 25 | 06

prssa-transp

One of the items on my list of 50 things to do before I turn 25 is to become a member of a club at my university.

The purpose of putting this on the list was to actively force myself to become more active on campus. I was wholeheartedly active while in high school, participating in everything from science club to art club to show choir, cross country, scholastic bowl, and journalism. I rarely had a day free from the multitude of activities I threw myself at, and I wouldn’t have had it any other way. Since coming to college, however, I haven’t taken advantage of the many opportunities the campus presents to its students. I feel that joining a club was important not only to bolster my resume, but also to get me out of my comfort zone, meet new people, and gain important skills for after college.

I had never heard of PRSSA (Public Relations Student Society of America) until Stacey Howard’s (http://mycauserie.wordpress.com/) Introduction to Public Relations class, in which she mentioned it as a unique career-boosting tool. Well, I’m all about career-boosting, so I went to the first meeting, in which I met some of the members and found out what being a member was all about, while eating delicious desserts. Since the first meeting, I have joined their Relay for Life team, attended a LinkedIn workshop, spoke with previous PRSSA members who now have careers in the communications field, attended a social media meeting, and learned about various volunteer opportunities in the area. This coming Wednesday is a resume workshop which would cost $100 for any non-member of PRSSA.

I couldn’t be happier that I joined the club that I did, rather than an unorganized one that meets “every once in awhile,” is just a filler for my resume, and doesn’t give me invaluable networking and organizational skills.

If you are interested in joining PRSSA, check out prssa.org to find information for the one at your school!

Public Relations Plan for Housing Development

Photo: Personal Property

I have created a PR plan for a fictitious brand new housing development with multiple issues that have been reported by disgruntled tenants. This development, less than one year old, has its first occupants living in the apartments. The price per bedroom (for a four bedroom apartment) is $600. While this includes a private bathroom for each occupant, the bedrooms are still small, and with the added maintenance complaints, it is arguably not worth living there. On top of the $600/month, resigning a lease for the following year, will cost an additional $100 for “activities fees” and new leasers will have to pay $200.

Issues reported by tenants include:

-Mold in windows (bedrooms & common area)
-Cold rooms because the spray applied on the mold by maintenance men ate away the paint, calking, and drywall around windows
-Maintenance men tearing down curtains when coming in to clean windows
-Damages on walls, doors, floors upon move-in
-Cheap paint allowing smudges upon any touch
-Lack of light bulbs upon move-in
-Cheap fake wood floor easily torn, some upon move-in
-Poor customer service at office
-Water in apartments periodically not working
-Nails in walls & ceilings showing
-Water stains in ceiling
-Limited guest parking
-Apartment numbers stolen
-Not following federally regulated issuing of addresses for apartment buildings, and coming up with their own addresses for occupants, leaving them unusable. This led to lack of mail for weeks, public humiliation at the post office’s judgment, and lack of safety for occupants because the apartments could not be found by GPS, and 911 would not work in case of fire or emergency.

Because it would be in the best interest of the apartment complex to keep tenants at all costs, I would advise the following:

-Hire a public relations professional who specializes in crisis coverage
-Acknowledge mold in some of the apartments, ask other tenants if they have mold. If they do: clean mold, replace window & calking, offer to pay medical bills, remove additional $100 to live there the following year.
-Lower monthly prices or state that remodels will be made for all problems if price remains
-Build more parking
-Fix damaged roof