UM Students Sweep Public Relations Association of Mississippi Awards

Ole Miss group dominates state competition

UM public relations students winning awards at the recent Public Relations Association of Mississippi Prism competition include (front row, from left) Rachel Anderson, Christina Triggs, Emma Arnold and Hannah Pickett, and (back row) Alex Hicks, Sarah Cascone and Cassidy Nessen. Photo courtesy Stan O’Dell

OXFORD, Miss. – University of Mississippi public relations students have won every award presented in the Public Relations Association of Mississippi student competition, and one student was named the best public relations college student in the state.

Rachel Anderson, a journalism and Spanish major from Chesapeake, Virginia, was named PRAM’s 2017 Student of the Year, competing against nominees from five other universities in the state.

“Rachel was selected for her impressive record of excellence and drive in all areas such as her academic honors, PR-related organizations and experience, and for her activities on campus and in the community,” said Kylie Boring, PRAM’s director of student services. “She has acquired a skill set of talents that will help propel her into the public relations industry, and I am confident she will represent this industry to the highest standard.”

Anderson also won an award for her student work, as did five other Ole Miss students and one alumna. The awards were presented at the PRAM state conference in Hattiesburg.

The students entered public relations campaigns they produced in senior lecturer Robin Street’s advanced public relations class. Each campaign required multimedia skills, including writing news and feature articles, shooting video and photos, creating digital media, planning creative events and conducting research.

“I was so proud that every student award presented went to one of our students,” Street said. “Our students demonstrated that they excel in the diverse set of skills needed in PR. That is a tribute to the preparation they received from all the faculty members at the Meek School.”

Awards were given at three levels, based on the number of points judges award each entry. The top award is the Prism, followed by the Excellence and Merit awards. Multiple students can win in the same category if they earn the required number of points.

Hannah Pickett, an integrated marketing communications major from Houston, Texas, won a Prism.

“Students from the University of Mississippi once again proved their knowledge and understanding of the public relations practice through their entries in the Prism Awards,” said Amanda Parker, PRAM’s vice president for awards. “The judges praised Prism Award winner Hannah Pickett for having an extremely creative and well-planned project, making it an excellent campaign all around.

Excellence winners were Anderson; Emma Arnold, a journalism major from McKenzie, Tennessee; and Christina Triggs, a marketing and corporate relations major from Sugarland, Texas.

Merit winners were Sarah Cascone, a journalism major from Thomasville, Georgia; Cassidy Nessen, an IMC major from Katy, Texas; Alex Hicks, an IMC major from Meridian; and Maggie McDaniel, a journalism graduate from Columbus, Georgia, who works as an account manager at Communications 21 in Atlanta.

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