Name: Connor Peters
University: Bournemouth University
Course: BA Public Relations
Why did you choose to study PR?
Whilst all my friends were beginning to fill out their ucas applications back in late 2013, I still had very little idea of what I wanted to do so I went to see my careers adviser. She suggested a handful of things including public relations, journalism and teaching. PR was the one I knew the least about so I spent some time researching PR at university and the PR industry, as well as talking to my uncle who had a successful PR career. After that it seemed like it was for me, and here I am now.
the course involves the skills you need to succeed in the world of PR
What has your course involved?
The course has a range of units covering PR from all angles. I began my first year learning the fundamentals of persuasion and public relations, and how to write in pr specific styles. There’s been other modules more concerned with marketing and others that are solely PR, but ultimately the course involves the skills you need to succeed in the world of PR.
What has been the most interesting aspect of studying PR?
I didn’t realise until I started studying it, but PR is everywhere. It’s played a huge part in recent history, and the chances are that a lot of the content you see on a daily basis comes from those in the PR industry.
Will you do a year in industry placement?
I’m currently in my second year, so my placement year will start after my exams. I haven’t yet secured a placement, but I’m still applying and sending emails around, so hopefully I’ll secure one soon.
We really loved your Twitter CV, what has the reaction been to it?
The Twitter CV idea was originally made for a networking event at Bournemouth University. I made a Twitter CV similar to the one I have now, and put a QR code linking to the twitter account on the poster CV I had to make for the event. However that failed and no one scanned the code or was the least bit interested. Months later, the search for a placement began, and as any student going on a placement year knows, applications can be very long. I was getting exhausted from filling out countless applications when I came across PRWeek’s ‘Powerbook’. I revisited the Twitter CV, wrote out a new list of tweets for the account, and followed everyone in the Powerbook that I’d like to work with. After that, I started following accounts simply linked to the companies I wanted to work at, hoping one of them would notice me, and eventually they did. Once Rich Leigh tweeted about me there was tons of interaction. Then I got mentioned in PR Week and Twitter moments which was nice. What I was hoping to achieve was a placement and to get my name out there. I’m currently in talks with a couple of people and it’s looking good, so I’d say the Twitter CV has been pretty successful.
Have you any other PR experience?
I had a short work placement with Quite Great PR after writing some reviews for them, and my time there was my first insight into a career in PR. My role there mainly concerned blog management and other online content, such as reviews and press releases.
the only way to be successful is not only to adapt but to stand out
What are your aspirations for after university?
I aspire to change public relations by any means necessary. I don’t know exactly how I’ll do this yet, but in such a fast moving industry, the only way to be successful is not only to adapt but to stand out. Also I’d love to work abroad eventually, I plan on writing my dissertation on PR in emerging economies.
a lot of A level students know very little about PR degree opportunities
What are your tips for A level students considering a PR degree?
Talk to PR students and professionals. No one knows what it’s like more than we do. And do your research, a lot of A level students know very little about PR degree opportunities.