Tag Archives: college

5 signs marking finals week on a college campus

AIt is finals week! Well, some colleges have either completed finals week, are currently in finals week, or will be there shortly. Some students will sail through the week with minimal worries, while others will feel as if they are sitting on pins and needles until their final grade is made available. To me, below are the top 5 signs of finals week on a college campus.

5. Everyday is a pajama party.

In my personal opinion, pajamas should only be worn inside the house. However, during the week of finals I always tend to see an increase number of people wearing pajamas on-campus. Not sure if this is due to late night studying and waking up too late to change clothes, or if something else is in play. Regardless, please take a few minutes to put on something other than pajamas. Jogging pants and a sweatshirt work just as well.

4. Increase number of safety reminders.

Let me first state that you should always protect your belongings, at least to the best of your abilities. Thieves get a little more clever every year as they look for easy ways to make cash. Sadly, textbooks are a hot commodity right now; for all the wrong reasons. Not to mention this is the season of giving, so many thieves will take and give or sell to someone else. Protect your belongings. My former babysitter, she moved away, attaches mini bells to her purse and book bag so they will ring if anyone picks up her stuff. It is a start.

3. The library parking lot reminds you of Wal-Mart’s parking lot.

I think the library is a great place to study, if the environment works for you. If not, then please pick somewhere else to go. I cannot say I am amazed at the number of students who go to the library to study but participate in social gatherings instead.

2. An increase number of Parking & Transportation employees.

Dear students: Finals week, or any other week, is not the time to attempt to outsmart the employees of Parking & Transportation. Parking & Transportation knows it is finals weeks, and they know you think you only need 30 minutes to take your final. Lets not acquire parking tickets that could jeopardize you receiving your degree in the mail, or delay you from registering on time. Just park in your assigned parking lot.

1. An overflow of energy drink cans in the recycling bins.

Although I do not drink energy drinks, it is still rewarding to know that students are utilizing the recycling bins. 🙂

What did I miss?  What are additional signs of finals week on a college campus?

Urkovia

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Some thing I don’t like, but must accept.

This was the topic for the weekly speech given by students in my public speaking course today. It was rather interesting to hear not only the students response to this topic, but the explanation for their choice as well. I won’t share all of them, but below are some of the things students in the class don’t like, but must accept.

  • Foods that make you fat
  • Death
  • Taxes
  • Their height
  • Current automobile
  • Current distance from the beach

Which do you agree with? What is some thing you don’t like, but must accept?

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Taking college course in the summer is like…..

Today my public speaking students gave a short 1 1/2 to 2 minute speech using the theme “Taking college classes in the summer is like…” Students focused on time and content. Below are some of the analogies they devised.

  • Like ripping off a band-aid. It hurts.
  • Attending basic training for the military.
  • Planning a wedding in a month. You’re going to be frazzled and have some sleepless nights, but it’ll be worth it.
  • Being stuck in traffic in Atlanta. You know it’s going to happen, so just suck it up.
  • Having a temporary job. You know you need the extra cash, or in this case, college credit.
  • Unloading trucks for 12 hours. You don’t look forward to it, but the money is good.
  • Being back in high school because you have class everyday.

What was/is taking summer classes in college like for you?

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A discussion of ethics and public relations

Each academic year the Public Relations Advisory Board (composed of practitioners who are friends and alumni) network with public relations students at Georgia Southern  University. Past networking experiences involved student challenges, resume critiques, workshops, etc. This year was a discussion in ethics and public relations.

left to right: Alex Grovenstein, Don Rountree, Tal Wright

Industries represented on this years panel included energy, a PR firm, and academics. After approximately 10-15 minutes of each panel member providing examples of ethical dilemmas on their job, along with their opinions on some recent turn of events, the floor was open for questions. Here is a synopsis of the question and answer session.

Is there a difference between company ethics and public ethics?

  • There is a difference betwen the two as the company looks at ethical parameters while the public is typcially more morale, not research based. An example would be the debate over the promotion of sexual abstinence. (Don)
  • More companies are training on ethical standards. Companies are requiring employees to complete yearly ethics test. Signature confirmation is required upon completion. (Tal)
  • Is it okay to blog on behalf of the client? No. But we will help them with the process-outline, editing, help post, etc. The client must be engaged.  (Don)

If the problem is in one branch, do you inform all branches or just the one?

  • This depends on the situation. If the issue invovles possible contamination then yes, we would tell all of our branches. However, if it is an employee related issue in one area then every branch does not need to know what has taken place. (Tal)
  • With regards to education we would inform everyone. Of course we would tailor the message for the audience seeing as individuals will be more concerned with their specific major. (Alex)

Have you ever been in a situation where your ethics where questioned?

  • Yes. Just last week with a billing situation. The client stated he didn’t know he would be charged for the services, yet I had documentation proving otherwise. We talked about whether or not he was happy with the services and came to an agreement on the charges. (Don) 
  • Yes. We had an issue with the Savannah pot hole covers due to a fire beneath the tunnel. We were invited to speak with some of the local authorities. A reporter from the AP was not invited to cover the meeting and called us. The reporter initially believed we were unethical in regards to holding a meeting behind close doors. We explained to him that we were invited to speak at the meeting and did not call the meeting, thus it was not our decision as to which media personnel would or would not be allowed to attend. We did ask the local authorities about allowing the reporter and they said no. After the meeting with local authorities we presented to additional media the same information presented in the meeting.  (Tal)

 

This is truly a synopsis of the information shared by the participating advisory board members. Many thanks to the students in attendance. I look forward seeing you all at the next networking event.

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Filed under guest speakers, personal thoughts, public relations

Cultural bias in the media

Last night I had the privilege to moderate a panel titled “Cultural Bias in the Media.” This panel consisted of Dr. Melanie Stone, broadcasting professor, Charles Minshew, the Editor and Chief of the George-Anne (university paper), and Frenchie Jones, a freelance journalist with print and TV experience.

Prior to the forum the panelist received the following six starter questions.

  1. What do you believe is the purpose of free press in America?
  2. From a professional or collegiate standpoint, do you view the media as bias? If so, in what way?
  3. Do you think bias is derived from media presentation or audience perception?
  4. How does the media perpetuate or help alleviate stereotypes?
  5. What obligations do you think the media has to challenge social norms?
  6. What do you think the media could do to be more diverse?

Due to the flow of conversation and time restraints, all the questions were not addressed to the panel; however, their responses did touch on many of the above issues.

Below is a brief recap of the various themes I took away from this panel.

  • Diversity: If you want to alleviate some of the bias, perceived or otherwise, than more diversity is needed among decision makers or gatekeepers. A diverse workforce can become minute in comparison to diverse decision makers.
  • Consumerism: This is the one value all media outlets have in common. Media is a business, thus it strives for revenue.
  • Critical Thinking: We can not blame the media for everything. We have to become critical thinkers of the information presented and choose what we will or will not accept.
  • Objectivity: Ideally individuals will be objective in their story, yet their objectivity is still filtered through a frame of reference. Thus, we again must remember to be critical thinkers of what is being portrayed in the media. Objectivity is individualistic; accuracy is universal.
  • Individual power: We tend to forget that freedom of speech is applicable to both the media and individuals. If we do not agree with what is being distributed, whether it is via print or TV, than we can and should voice our concern.

These are just a few of the themes that resonated with me during the allotted time frame. Of course, the examples, along with questions and comments from audience members were thought provoking as well.

What are some of your thoughts? Do you agree or disagree with any of the above statements? What would you add to this conversation?

Many thanks to the 45-50+ graduate and undergraduate students in attendance. Also to the Multicultural Center for including this panel on their Diversity Calendar. Looking forward to more great discussions to come.

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