Survival guide: Ad/PR majors at UCF

Amanda Herrera – Beta Class

One of the most satisfying moments for an aspiring Advertising and Publications major at the University of Central Florida is receiving that “congratulations” email from the NASC office, especially if you had to apply more than once before getting in. However, no fear, you’ve made it into the program and now have to figure out a way to successfully navigate through one of the most competitive communication programs in Florida. Although advice from your professors is necessary and valuable, this blog post will give you advice from the perspective of a fellow Ad/PR student. So here are the top three things you should know in order to survive your time as an Ad/PR major.

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The Intern

If there’s one thing you’ll continue to hear throughout your time at UCF it’s that interning is the key to success; and it’s true. Although I’d like to give credit to our wonderful professors for creating a curriculum that teaches us as much of the day-to-day in the field as it can, it’s not comparable to in-office experience. Nothing is going to better prepare you for what the day-to-day is like at a creative agency than actually spending days in an office. It’ll give you the opportunity to put what you’ve learned in class to work in a practical setting. Internships also allow you an opportunity to start getting comfortable with an office setting. Being in an office setting can be scary and intimidating, the more time you spend there, the less scary it’ll seem. Interning is one of the best ways to network in your field and it could lead to a full time job!

Seek Guidance, From Anyone

When first admitted to the major, you’re assigned an advisor who you’re supposed to consult with when you don’t know which class to take or if you should study abroad, etc. However, you’re not married to that one advisor. If there is a professor within Nicholson you feel has a better understanding of you as a student, go see them. I’ve gone to people other than my specified advisor, depending on what I need help with. Professors mean it when they say they like when students stop by their office hours. They’re professionals in their fields, as well as professors; trust them to be knowledgeable on our school and our industry. Turn to them when you need some advice.

Strength in Numbers

One of the great things of the Advertising and Public Relations industry is it’s understanding on the importance of networking. So network! There are so many clubs within UCF, some of which are in Nicholson. Being able to form bonds with other students within your major is helpful with keeping you on track. There is no better feeling during finals than knowing some of your closest friends are just as stress and unnerved as you are. Surround yourself with people who are just as dedicated and focused on their success as you are. Organizations like Quotes, AdClub and Zeta Phi Eta are all made up of members who have high standards for themselves within their fields. Having those people in your circle is never a bad thing.

Good luck to all you future and current Ad/PR majors!


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