Dream big and make a difference
By: Jadyn Sims
Do you ever feel like life is a dream, or a simulation? Doing the same thing every day, becoming a robot, following the system, not being mentally stimulated. That’s always been my biggest fear about graduating and navigating the professional world. “What career can I be in that makes a decent living? One that I am also qualified for and can make a difference with?” That’s the question that would haunt me my senior year of high school and freshman year of college. I’ve known I wanted to get a degree in journalism after spending two years as one of the yearbook editors in high school. Writing, interviewing, storytelling and creating a collection of memories fulfilled my passion to make a difference. That’s what journalism is about whether you’re talking about broadcast, print, advertising, or public relations. That’s where I fit in today—public relations. If you asked me what a public relations professional does five years ago, I wouldn’t have been able list two things. Now if you were to ask me, I’d simply answer “What don’t we do?”
Not DJ Khaled, but I’ve Got the Keys
As I’ve been making my way through my public relations education, I’ve discovered more about myself than I think I would have if I had I chosen a different path. I’ve learned a lot about the world as well. For instance, establishing relationships is a major part of life. Making relationships and keeping them is the key to success. That is the beauty of public relations.
With all this knowledge that I’ve obtained so far, street and school knowledge alike, I still am learning new things everyday working with National Black Public Relations Society and AGENZ. This is my very first experience in an out-of-class, real world professional setting. I would be fibbing if I said I wasn’t struck with nerves at the beginning. The feelings of inexperience, unpreparedness, incapability overwhelmed me. I didn’t know how I would be able to measure up to the rest of my team, nor was I sure how well I would meet the expectations of my mentor and client.
Don’t Sell Yourself Short
Just within the short time of being with AGENZ, though, I’ve felt more capable than I have before. Working with my colleagues, who are brilliant and creative each in their own way, and working with Neil Foote, who is well acquainted in the industry, has given me the skills and confidence I needed to produce the work I have now. Never have I written and formatted a newsletter before this semester. Wasn’t sure how to conduct a communication audit for an organization until this semester. All of this knowledge happily shared with me by my fellow AGENZ colleagues who have had that experience. For that I am grateful.
In a nutshell, outside of the numerous work products I’ve produced for my client, what can I say that I’ve learned? I’ve learned what it means to truly be in a collaborative environment. I’ve learned that it is okay to not know everything and ask for help. That’s what AGENZ is all about, and any other internship for that matter. I’m supposed to be asking questions and still learning, developing new skills that will help me in the future. I can honestly say this is best opportunity I could have taken in my college career and I look forward to the doors this opportunity will open for me.
About the Author: Jadyn Sims in a student at the University of Texas Mayborn school of Journalism studying journalism with a focus in public relations. She will graduate in December 2021 and aspires to work in government relations.