Super Friday Educators Academy Webinar Series

Educators Academy
Super Friday

Every year, the Educators Academy hosts a daylong Super Saturday conference in conjunction with ICON, filled with panels, research paper presentations, and poster sessions that highlight best practices in the classroom. An evening reception for educators and practitioners follows, where the group presents the Ferguson award for outstanding contributions to PR education by a practitioner.

Since 2020 is a year like no other, we're expanding our Super Saturday conference to a multi-day event. Over two Fridays in October, you'll get access to the same great panels, research and teaching tips while also networking with educators around the world. We'll celebrate our top Ethics, Diversity and Inclusion, Graduate Student and Faculty research papers and recognize Kim Hunter as this year's Ferguson award recipient. And, to extend our networking and learning beyond October, we're hosting an additional day of panels solely focused on diversity and inclusion and the top Good Ideas for Teachers (GIFTs) from leaders in the classroom.

Make plans now to join us for this historic opportunity to connect with colleagues near and far. We look forward to seeing you soon!


Day One
Friday, October 16, 2020

10–11 a.m. EDT
Virtual Victory
Best practices for remote teamwork and collaboration in student-run agencies

As colleges closed their campuses and shifted to online classes this spring, one challenge became how to prepare students for remote teamwork and project completion in student-run agencies. Not only were the related skills important for course success, they could also be professionally beneficial. In 2019, public relations was identified as one of the top 10 industries for remote work (Back, 2020).

Because most client-based courses or experiential learning experiences in PR education have not routinely addressed remote team management and remote project work, the lessons thus far become even more important. This panel will share best practices for remote team management as well as tools for students to use for client relations, virtual leadership, project management, team communication and collaboration. Panelists will also connect how these skills will help prepare students for internships and post-graduate jobs.


Kim S. Marks Malone, APR
Dr. Debbie Davis, ABC, APR, Fellow PRSA
Dr. Jeffrey A. Ranta
Dr. Adrienne Wallace

11 a.m.–12 p.m. EDT
Research Presentations

Session One

Top Ethics Paper
sponsored by The Arthur W. Page Center for Integrity in Public Communication

Ethical Leadership and Influence Building: An Examination of Female Public Relations Professionals’ Perceptions on Preparedness, Role Modeling, and Influence Strategies 
Authors: Dr. Juan Meng and Dr. Marlene Neill, APR, Fellow PRSA

Can SMEs in the food industry expect competitive advantages from proactive CSR when CSR trade-offs exist? The impact of CSR level and price on C-C identification and consumer responses
Authors: Dr. Yeonsoo Kim and Dr. Nandini Bhalla


Session Two

Dealing with Online Anger: A Case Study of H&M Racial Crisis Communication
Author: Luis Fernando Vergara Arrieta

Engaging Employees through Diversity-Oriented Leadership and Strategic Internal Communication During the Covid-19 Outbreak
Authors: Dr. Yeunaje Lee, Dr. Weiting Tao, Dr. Queenie Jo-Yun Li and Ruoyu Sun

12 p.m.–1 p.m. EDT
Lunch and Learn Session

Talking Bias in the Classroom: Boundaries and Responsibilities for PR Educators
Dr. Melissa D. Dodd, APR and Dr. Hilary K. Fussell Sisco, APR

From Grant to PRism: Scaffolding Assignments Lead to Award-Winning Campaign
Arien Rozelle

Student Leadership in Public Relations Strategy: A Flipped Classroom Model
Tiffany Derville Gallicano and Robin Rothberg

Cultivating Creative Thinking Through Weekly Challenges
Dr. Heather J. Hether

Building Relationships with Student Publics: How the First-Year Seminar Creates A Campus Community
Dr. Deanna J. Leone, Dr. Bey-Ling Sha, APR and Bethany Whittaker

An Interdisciplinary Experiential Learning Project: The First Amendment on Trial at Robert Morris University
Ann D. Summerall-Jabro

Eco-Tourism Campaigns as a Framework for PR Writing Course
Arien Rozelle

Business Acumen: Proposal-Writing in the Student Firm
Margaret C. Ritsch

1–2 p.m. EDT
Sparking Student Creativity and Building Design Competence in the PR Curriculum

Most public relations students do not intend to become graphic designers, and yet, they will be expected to design many materials in their career, from slide decks to posters. Public relations majors across the country often have one design-related course required before they graduate, which is not enough for design mastery; however, creativity and design competence are central to the industry.

These panelists, who are each Adobe Education Leaders, will discuss the impact of incorporating free, user-friendly tools for design-related projects in non-design-related classes and the possibility that their use may increase students' creative self-efficacy and confidence in completing projects. Panelists will offer case study examples, review professor-tested resources, share free training opportunities, and overview tools and assignments that can be used to spark student creativity, improve design proficiency and enhance pedagogy - no matter the class.

Geah Pressgrove, John Delacruz, Emily Kinsky.

Moderated by Clara Galan, Adobe Global Education Community Lead; K-12 and Higher Education

Day Two
Friday, October 23, 2020

10–11 a.m. EDT
Activating “Sticky” Strategies in PRSSA: Addressing Emerging Global Issues Impacting the University, Community, and PR Industry

The Public Relations Student Society of America (PRSSA) holds great potential as an experiential learning outlet for student members. Yet, many faculty advisers face challenges related to student engagement, common understanding of the PRSSA faculty advising role, and comprehensive training and support services to build and maintain a successful chapter. This panel explores those challenges identified by a nationwide survey of PRSSA faculty advisers (n = 153), and identifies opportunities to improve the advising experience that benefit faculty, PRSSA members, and the national PRSSA organization.

This panel will explore the opportunities for students to build marketable skills related to the adaptability and agility in the online business environment (Freberg, 2020; Marr, 2020), and programming and recruiting strategies that embrace the call of PRSA’s Diversity & Inclusion Strategic Plan (PRSA, 2020). The goal of this panel is to hold an open, collaborative conversation to identify solutions that will benefit all PRSSA chapters.

This panel will feature tested strategies that can be replicated and implemented immediately in your PRSSA chapter or student-led firm. 

Dr. Amanda Weed, APR, Dr. Karen Freberg, Dr. Betsy Emmons and Dr. Adrienne Wallace

11–Noon EDT
Research Presentations

Session One

Top Student Paper
sponsored by The Plank Center for Leadership in Public Relations

Creating organizational authenticity and identification:
Effect of leaders’ motivating language and impact on employee advocacy
Author: Cen April Yue

Exploring the Impact of Internal Communication on Employee Trust during the COVID-19 Pandemic:
The Mediating Role of Employee Psychological Wellbeing
Authors: Yufan Sunny Qin and Dr. Linjuan Rita Men


Session Two

Top Diversity Paper
sponsored by American University

A path model of LGBT workplace diversity CSR:
The impact of CSR level on stakeholder responses and the roles of CSR fit and attribution in the process
Authors: Dr. Yeonsoo Kim and Dr. Nandini Bhalla

Top Faculty Paper
sponsored by PRSA Educators Academy

Relationship Cultivation and Public Engagement via Social Media During the Covid-19 Pandemic in China
Authors: Qiongyao Serena Huang, Jie Jin, Benjamin Lynn and Dr. Linjuan Rita Men

Noon–1 p.m. EDT
Networking Lunch + Awards Program

Top Faculty, Student, Diversity and Ethics Papers + Ferguson Award 2020
Ferguson Award Winner - Kim Hunter, The LAGRANT Foundation

1–2 p.m. EDT
The Women in Charge:
Teaching leadership skills through the "hidden histories" of PR's female pioneers

Although there are more women in the U.S. public relations industry than men, leadership roles are overwhelmingly held by men. According to the Institute of Public Relations, nearly 80 percent of agency CEOs are men. Women who strive to become leaders in PR have always been forced to break through racial, societal and gender barriers. In the past, women who aspired to leadership roles did not have the protection of equal opportunity laws to hinder discrimination.

Despite facing hostile, sexist workplaces, most often dominated by white men, a few remarkable women did manage to break through - much to the chagrin of their male counterparts - exercising their talents, intuition and collaborative workstyles to become highly successful leaders in their own right.

There was Inez Kaiser who, in 1957, became the first African American woman to open a PR firm; there was Barbara Hunter, who in the 1960s purchased the D-A-Y agency where she worked, sold it to behemoth Ogilvy & Mather and then, at age 65, started another agency, Hunter PR; and there was Marilyn Laurie, who after 16 years working at AT&T, became the company's head of communications. She was the first woman to lead PR at a Fortune 500 company. The "hidden histories" of these and other women hold valuable leadership lessons for today's PR students, many of them destined to become leaders themselves one day.

Dr. Denise Hill, APR
Grace Leong, President, Hunter PR
Shelley Spector, President, Spector & Associates and Founder, Museum of Public Relations

Our Sponsors

Corporate Communications Logo
Tennessee State University
Institute for Public Relations
School of Communications
University of Oregon
Arthur Page
The Plank Center
Sage Publishing
University of Tennessee