As an initiative by the Department of Sociology for students of 2nd year Sociology pursuing a paper on Public Relations (PR), two ex-Christ University Students who Studied MA Applied Sociology, Medha and Yudhvir were asked to talk to students about how PR functions in the field. They are currently working with one of the leading names in the field, Edelman. Though the classroom is a very important place to gain knowledge and form a strong base for our future employment opportunities, often we need to know what’s happening out there in the field. So to bridge the gap between academics and the field, this interaction took place.
Initially the discussions were about what kind of work they are given in the office and what are the kind of expectations that the organization they were working with had of them. They talked about the kind of work they had to put in on various projects and spoke about how they approached projects. They discussed the steps that are taken with the projects that come in and how occasionally one’s unique way of thinking is what can contribute to the projects that they are working on. They also spoke about how PR can be pressurizing and can have an impact on one’s social life but the work can be engaging and enjoyable.
According to our guest speakers, they describe PR as a form of storytelling which has an intention of creating an impression to the public. Based on the demands of the clients, the stories are formed. Occasionally, PR professions with minimum information from clients should have the ability to create a narrative to influence the public opinion of them in positive way. We also found out it’s a field which involves meeting top management level in various organizations, travelling and attending various events.
Students of Sociology often go through this anxiety if they’re going to get placed over an MBA or a M. Com student, the ex-students were able to give us some amount of hope that we are strong competitors for students of other departments as the company that came in for placements hired more students from our department than some of the students in other departments which specialize in such managerial and corporate based knowledge.
They also spoke about how much of what they learnt in class helped in the Field. The seniors confessed that none of the theories that we learn in class can really be directly applied to understand their field or work, But then they admit that the theories that they learnt were influential in forming a base for their understanding of the field and alter it for it to work. A strong base in theory can sometimes provide us with deeper insights, which seem to be required in PR.
So this was an informative and productive session for not only the students who want to do PR but any student who wants to take up a job in the near future. From their exposure to the field, they were able to bring out the relevance and value of a sociological understanding in the Corporate word which definitely gives us hope of a future in this competitive world.
Report by Dheeraj