I haven’t failed at much in life. I don’t mean to sound arrogant, but throughout high school, I was selected or hired for nearly everything I wanted.
And then I came to UA. Instead of competing against my high school classmates, I was competing against nearly 40,000 other students. And these weren’t just any students; they were college students. They were smart. They had experience. Suddenly, I wasn’t the star pupil. I was just another name on the roll sheet.
To be honest, I was scared.
Not failing much in high school can make college downright terrifying. Real life is closer and the competition is better. But what I learned, and what you will learn too (if you haven’t already), is that a fear of failure can be quite dangerous.
I almost didn’t apply for a PRSSA executive board position. I thought I wasn’t involved enough. I figured there were students much more prepared than I was. I counted myself out before I even gave myself a shot. If it weren’t for the kind words of my family, friends and peers—as well as some gentle nudging from the current UA PRSSA President Bethany Corne (thank you)—I probably wouldn’t have even filled out the application.
But I did, and here I am.
Fast-forward a few months to the start of the school year. I had just gotten out of our first PRSSA executive board meeting, and I remember thinking what a great group of people I had been given the opportunity to work with. I had already learned so much, and it felt silly to think that I almost hadn’t applied.
In that moment, I realized how ridiculous fearing failure was. When I thought back to my most rewarding experiences, I remembered how scary they seemed at first. A fear of failure just means you care. You don’t worry about getting rejected for a position you don’t want. But your dream internship? You get a little nervous submitting that application. So, I’m here to tell you that you should never be ashamed to care about something. And if you care, you’re most likely scared to fail.
Just remember, the things that scare you the most often end up being the most beneficial.
So, I encourage all of you to go do something that scares you. Apply for Capstone Agency this spring. Run for SGA. Interview for that internship you really want.
Maybe it’ll work out as you would hope; maybe it won’t.
Just don’t let fear hold you back.
By Alyssa Comins, Vice President of Web-Based Communication
You heard it here first, folks — learning Chinese is the cure to Alzheimer’s.
Although I’ll admit that might be a slight exaggeration, I feel confident that exercising your brain cells can only improve your cognitive power, which in turn creates winning campaigns.
In my last semester at The University of Alabama, I’ve decided to enroll in CHI 101, an intro to Chinese class. I wish I could say that decision was made for admirable reasons, but in reality it was the result of an “I’m almost a college graduate” crisis (a.k.a. my last ditch effort to learn something new before my student career is over forever).
As a senior studying public relations and management, my awkward presence in the class is duly noted by the 20 eager freshmen just happy to be there. I spend half the time gawking at my teacher in disbelief that she expects me to understand what she’s saying, and the other half questioning myself as to why I thought this was a good idea. I can easily say this is the most challenging class I’ve taken all throughout college.
That’s not to say the courses for my major haven’t been difficult. But everything that I do toward my public relations degree, including class projects, Capstone Agency, internships, etc., is a different kind of difficult from my Chinese class. My brain has become accustomed to processing social media reports, scanning graphics for design edits and sifting through an inbox of emails. While I’ve been constantly learning and developing new skills over the past three years, my mind has grown used to the parts of the brain that are connected to communication. The parts that correlate with memorization and translation have become a little rusty.
And therein lies the power of Chinese — or learning any foreign language for that matter. Challenging yourself to think in a new way and in an uncomfortable setting forces you to generate more brain activity, which can make you a stronger professional in any industry or field. Looking specifically at public relations, an energized thinking pattern has the potential to help you...
Over time your thought process adapts to a routine, so it’s up to you to light the spark that will keep your mind’s wheels turning. If you’re working with legacy clients, it can be easy to get in a rut and crank out the same tactics over and over again. Relevancy is the only way to survive in the business world, and the only way to stay relevant is to reinvent the wheel. And to reinvent the wheel, you have to reinvent the way you think.
Chinese may not be the actual cure to Alzheimer’s, but it’s just one of the ways to spark a more successful career.
By Megan Perkins, Capstone Agency Firm Director
The Brown House is looking for talented, ambitious and awesome interns! If you're passionate, articulate and looking for good experience in the nonprofit work, we have the internship for you!
About The Brown House: The mission of The Brown House is one of proximity, community, and opportunity. By living with those on the outskirts of society, we can better see and meet the needs that arise. Through a Christ-centric approach and by walking together as equals, we strive to meet emotional, spiritual, and economic needs of the West Circle community. Learn more here.
Four intern positions are available:
Find the application here.
Job Description: We are looking for a talented social media strategist to be a part of the UA Relay for Life family. You will develop and implement a cohesive social media strategy across all platforms to increase overall traffic and awareness of the Relay for Life. If you have a creative way of thinking and demonstrated skills in social media marketing, we want you on our team. As Social Media Coordinator, you will also be a member of the Relay for Life executive team. Being a member of the team involves attending all team meetings and events to accurately represent the University of Alabama Relay for Life. Ultimately, you should be able to ensure that our web presence is aligned with our mission and goals and is appropriate for a college audience.
Deadline: September 11
Contact: Luke Bondi
Strategies for Success, based in Carleton, Michigan, is an executive coaching and consulting firm built upon the premise that leadership isn’t logical, it’s physiological. By working with leadership at all levels, Strategies for Success develops and implements actions that help talent and companies excel in a competitive and dynamic environment. Strategies for Success has helped its clients achieve sustainable results since 2016. Learn more about Strategies for Success, its services and its approach here.
Responsibilities: Create branded material consistent with Strategies for Success core beliefs and key messaging. Intern will be responsible for keeping a consistent visual theme while creating PowerPoint templates, fliers, posters, booklets and ebooks, social media graphics, and other various visual material. Familiarity with Adobe Illustrator, Adobe InDesign and Adobe Photoshop is required. Strategies for Success is located in Carleton, MI, and all work can be conducted remotely. Compensation: Paid per project completed, to be determined by size of project.
Time Commitment: 5-10 hours per week; varies based on current projects.
Please send resumes and 1-2 work samples to Bethany (email@example.com)
All blogs are written by general members of UAPRSSA and Capstone Agency.