PR students elected to national council

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    By REBECCA SHAW

    Confidence can only take college students so far. BYU public relations students John Starkweather and Laurie Fisher added PR knowledge and experience to emerge victorious from the recent national PRSSA elections.

    The pair departed March 13 for Miami with high hopes and anticipation. There they presented speeches to the PRSSA National Assembly, composed of PRSSA chapter delegates. The assembly later voted on the 1997 PRSSA Student Council candidates.

    After 10 minutes of deliberation, Starkweather, a junior from Grand Junction, Colo., was appointed 1997 national PRSSA president and Fisher, a junior from Tustin, Calif., was elected as PRSSA vice president of professional development.

    Actual PRSSA elections were conducted March 15. Despite the opportunity for defeated candidates to join alternate races, Fisher ran unopposed. Starkweather said this was due to Fisher’s established credentials and national acclaim amongst the PRSSA community.

    “I’ve been impressed by the high caliber students PRSSA has produced and want to be a part of it,” Starkweather said during his address. “We need enthusiastic, proven leaders who will provide the crucial mechanisms to achieve success.”

    Comparing her key points to bridge planks, Fisher said the bridge she built for the audience “will get them from the student weary world to the professional world they want to be in some day.”

    As “Plank One,” Fisher discussed the opportunities for practical client experience through student-run PR firms. PRSA/PRSSA Relations were a key part of “Plank Two,” she said.

    “Whether your school is 200 miles away from the nearest PRSA chapter or two miles away, there are ways to tap into their experience and expertise,” Fisher said.

    After the 1997 national positions were announced, Starkweather and Fisher produced a survey for the other chapter delegates. They said it was intended to gather nationwide chapter concerns and insight for review during their year-long terms.

    “I am very excited, overwhelmed and humbled to have this job,” Fisher said. “All of this works together to facilitate a better transition to the career world.”

    The newly-elected National PRSSA Student Council will officially take office on June 1. Following their induction, Starkweather said a series of intensive council meetings will ensue in Scottsdale, Ariz., Nashville, Tenn., and New York.

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