Thursday, May 6, 2021

PRSSA hosts professionalism event

The Plattsburgh State Chapter of the Public Relations Student Society of America hosted its third annual #MULLET event at the Warren Ballrooms on November 5. The theme for this year’s event was fashion public relations. Attendees were shown how to dress and act professionally to prepare themselves for interviews and job experiences.

“The #MULLET event is one of our biggest events for PRSSA,” President of PRSSA Samantha Mendes said. In addition, Mendes said the professional headshots were a big seller for students to come to the event. The guest speaker this year was Chip Cook, director of creative services at Ralph Lauren in NYC.

“Chip is a really good friend of mine,” event coordinator Greg Russell said. Russell said he has known him for three years and that Cook has been with Ralph Lauren for almost nine years.

“He started at the bottom and worked his way to the top,” Russell said. “He just turned 30 and is already a director of creative services at a flagship store. He can give people a lot of good advice.”

Cook spoke about how he deals with public relations in his profession, the importance of the department and his experiences in the field, then gave advice to students on what to do when looking for jobs.

“This is a huge networking opportunity,” Russell said. “It’s so important to get a job anywhere. Chip knows so many people and can offer internship possibilities — he really wants to help students.”

In addition to a Skype conference with Cook, there were six informational booths and games for students.

“They all focus on public relations and professional development,” Mendes said. Also part of the event were games such as “pitch perfect,” a game where you have to do a pitch to sell yourself or a product, and a game that tested students if they could tie a tie in 30 seconds.

The Career Development Center was there to help students spice up their resumes, while the Fashion Club and PRSSA were both tabling to attract new members.

The fashion show concluded the event. The show consisted of 14 students — seven boys and seven girls.

“Some of them are going to wear clothes that are acceptable to wear to an interview,” Senior and Communication Coordinator for PRSSA Brandi Walsh, said. “The others are going to highlight what’s unacceptable to wear.”

Walsh said it’s important for students to see this because something they take to an interview and even everyday life. “It gives people keys as to how to dress and act professionally,” she said.

One of the things that Mendes and Walsh wanted to do was get students who were not public relations major to come to the event. Marketing major and Fashion Club Treasurer Ashanti Heyward was invited to the event and knew he had to come.

“This was a wonderful opportunity in terms of networking,” Heyward said. “Whether you’re in public relations, marketing or doing anything — this was the place to be.”

Heyward got to ask Cook a question during the Q&A session and said that without coming to these types of events, he wouldn’t have gotten the chance of learning new things and gaining new experiences.

Another attendee, public relations and multimedia journalism major Amy Sheldon, said she wanted to see what the event was about and get to play the fun games they had.

“Chip was really cool to talk to,” Sheldon said. “It was good to talk to someone who’s in the industry, successful and doing well.”

Email David Luces at

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