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If you have questions about your job search, turn to our career experts and get the edge you need. Members of PRSA’s College of Fellows are ready and willing to help you with two programs:

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  • How should I respond to these types of interview questions: "Tell me about yourself” or "What are your salary requirements?”
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  • What am I doing wrong? I send out resumes but never get interviews.
  • How long should I wait after an interview to hear from an employer?

To ask a question, scroll down to the question form and fill it out. When you’re ready to submit it, click the "Submit Question" button at the bottom. Many of your questions may already be answered in the more than 300 responses listed below so you may wish to review them first.

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There are currently 691 questions posted.

You are currently viewing questions 1 thru 5.

  posted: September 23,2016 06:29 PM -- submitted by: Alison Borris
Q1: I'm looking to switch industries, I have 11 years of PR and marketing experience, I worked in tech (mostly B2B) for 7 years and now I've been in footwear and apparel for 6 years. Ultimately I'd like to break into medical/health PR, or go back to tech, any thoughts/suggestions for how I can get out of my industry and into another? Is this common? I would think having a diverse background would be a good thing, but am open to hear what you think. thanks!

A1: Alison--

While moving from one field into another is possible, it's not easy. Certainly your experience in PR and marketing will help!

Each field has its own "language," and medical/health certainly does. Your learning curve would take quite sometime, and you might not be willing to "start at the bottom" of the salary scale.

Your moving back into tech seems to make a lot of sense to me. You already have experience there, and you probably know the language.

Best of success to you!
expert response from: Jim Haynes, APR, Fellow PRSA

  posted: September 23,2016 06:24 PM -- submitted by: Lisea
Q2: Hi I'm currently a undergraduate student who is majoring in Psychology ,I was wondering could I still have a career on Public Relations with that being my major.I also would like to know what steps should I take while in college (I already write for the schools newspaper),like classes and if I should go to graduate school?

A2: Lisea—

Public relations practitioners begin their careers with various backgrounds and degrees. It’s possible to succeed in public relations regardless of your beginning.

Having said that, let me hasten to point out that students who graduate with public relations or corporate communication degrees have distinct advantages in the competitive job market. They have been taught to write for various kinds of communication outlets, including the mass media and social media, and they know how to plan and execute a strategic plan to accomplish specific objectives. In most university programs that teach public relations, an undergraduate student is required to complete one or more internships in which the student works for an organization under the direction of a professional communicator. All of these factors mean that without them, you are at a disadvantage in securing a position in public relations.

Should you decide to aim for a career in public relations, you should take at least a course such as Introduction to Public Relations and a journalism or public relations writing course. More public relations and journalism courses will help. What you learn in psychology can be a great help along with sociology courses, but you certainly will need to understand the basic skills of the PR field.

If your university has a chapter of the national Public Relations Student Society of America (PRSSA.org), you should join and participate.

Best of luck to you!

expert response from: Jim Haynes, APR, Fellow PRSA

  posted: September 23,2016 05:56 PM -- submitted by: Sue
Q3:
I recently applied to a position as a scientific writer/editor, however I obtained my graduate degree in 2011 in MGT and Public Relations and have not had extensive scientific writing experience. I was advised to contact PRSA with help on elevating my KSAs in the following:
-Write and edit internal and external communications, including articles, blogs, media relations, design and revision. Contribute to the overall communication strategy development and implementation. Please advise.

A3: Sue--

The Public Relations Society of America (PRSA) is the world’s largest and foremost organization of public relations professionals and can be of great help to you.

PRSA provides many and varied opportunities for professional development. A calendar of programs is available at http://www.prsa.org/Learning/Calendar/list/all. In addition, the society’s chapters throughout the country conduct local seminars and workshops. Professional Interest Sections offer more opportunities. See http://www.prsa.org/Learning/Calendar/list/all for more information.

Studying for and achieving Accreditation in Public Relations (APR) is a process that demonstrates one’s mastery of today’s strategic communications practice and commitment to lifelong learning and ethical standards. Information on the process is available at http://www.praccreditation.org/apply/apr/,

To assist candidates in studying for the APR Examination, the APR Study Guide is available online without charge at http://www.praccreditation.org/resources/documents/apr-study-guide.pdf. You could use information in the study guide to assess your proficiencies, and weaknesses, then set out to improve any weaknesses through reading and participating in professional development programs.

Hope this helps!

expert response from: Jim Haynes, APR, Fellow PRSA

  posted: August 22,2016 03:45 PM -- submitted by: Leesa Kelley
Q4: Hello -
I am looking for a resume writer/linked in coach who specializes in PR/marketing communications. I have 27 years of experience, the last 20 at the same company. So, I'm rusty in this area. Cna you recommend anyone? Thanks

A4: If you are a member of PRSA, we have a special member benefit for you. A member of the College of Fellows will engage as a mentor with you and help you with your resume, discuss job search techniques, even introduce you to public relations colleagues.

You can find details on the PRSA website.

Regards,
Margaret Ann Hennen, APR, Fellow PRSA
expert response from: Margaret Ann Hennen, APR, Fellow PRSA

  posted: August 16,2016 11:23 AM -- submitted by: Brian
Q5: Is it possible to work as a mechanical engineer in traditional industries, such as manufacturing and construction, without having to listen to Obama derangement, passive-aggressive racist sarcasm, and the right-wing script about Clinton's emails? In other words, is it only older, white, male conservatives in this field?

A5: This site is intended to provide information for public relations/communication professionals. You must look elsewhere for the information you seek.
expert response from: Jim Haynes, APR, Fellow PRSA

  posted: August 13,2016 04:51 PM -- submitted by: Mariah
Q6: I interviewed for a position a few weeks ago. I have called the recruiter who referred me twice regarding updates. Monday he stated they were interviewing the last candidate Tuesday and I should have a response at the end of the week. I don't want a pest, but 1) This is my dream job and I am very anxious about hearing back and 2) If I don't get this job I will continue my college courses instead, but with tuition due Monday, my decision is time sensitive. What should I do?

A6: Use email to let the recruiter know how enthusiastic you are about the job opportunity and how excited you were expecting to hear about your application by the end of last week. Let the person know about your tuition deadline. Of course, keep it professional, but let the person know it's "either/or" for you.

Best of success to you!
expert response from: Jim Haynes, APR, Fellow PRSA

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