Tips for Business/Professional Conferences

Written by: Madalyn Freeman 

This year’s PRSSA National Conference was in Washington D.C. and was possibly the best experience I’ve had as a Public Relations student. During my time I had the chance to network with hundreds PRSSA students and PR professionals combined, exchange business cards, add people to my network on LinkedIn, learn from keynote speakers, tweet in every session and much more. During the little spare time we had, we visited the Washington Monument, the World War II Memorial, and Lincoln Memorial Reflecting Pool. We walked over 50 miles, rode the metro everywhere, even yelled SEA….HAWKS to rep Seattle! I guess you could say this trip was filled with a lot of business and a little bit of fun!

Since this was a 5 day long trip, I am sure you can only assume that I either missed all of my assignments, or was scrambling for two weeks trying to work ahead so I could enjoy my trip. Fortunately enough, being the PR girl that I am, I planned ahead but had the busiest two weeks of my life! But I can tell you, that it was absolutely worth it.

This list will help you be prepared for your business/professional conference:

  1. Make sure you have a plentiful supply of business cards if you do not have them already. You will want to order these, and a business card holder, at least a month in advance to make sure nothing goes wrong with shipping.
  2. Update your resume with your most current information (this can take a few hours).
  3. Print about 10-15 copies of your resume, on resume paper, depending on the type of conference. There is a chance that you will connect with someone regarding an internship or potential job opportunity, and you want to be prepared for that!
  4. Make sure you have an updated LinkedIn and Twitter account. I would say these are the two most important social media outlets to have and be active on as a PR student!
  5. Evaluate your closet and purchase/add new professional clothes to your wardrobe when necessary!
  6. Purchase a portable charger! Being a PR student means you will be on your phone THE ENTIRE TIME (it’s not rude, it’s recommended). You WILL feel left out if your phone is dead.

All in all, if you have the opportunity to attend any type of educational conference that you are interested in, go to it! It is the best thing to do during college because the school can even refund you for going!

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