As someone who has considered a career in public affairs, I was excited to hear two IU alumni who work in the field would be speaking with PRSSA.
Beth Wood Chapter members and journalism students had the opportunity to speak with Clare Krusing and Clare Marshall during the Public Affairs Panel on Jan. 30.
Krusing, currently working as deputy press secretary for America’s Health Insurance Plans, and Marshall, who most recently worked for the Obama campaign, answered questions during a Google+ hangout and conference call.
Marshall said good public relations go beyond strategic communication. As logistics operations manager for the 2013 Presidential Inaugural Committee, Marshall said her job required extensive coordination and collaboration.
One PRSSA member asked the panelists if completing a master’s degree in public affairs before looking for a job would be beneficial.
Both Marshall and Krusing said experience is more important then a master’s degree, and strong internship experience stands out more on a resume than a journalism degree.
Employers look for diverse experiences that demonstrate long-term, strategic thinking and leadership skills, Krusing said.
Some students, myself included, may be reluctant to take an internship instead of a job after college.
Marshall, who decided to intern at a small public affairs firm in Washington D.C. after working for the Obama campaign, said any experience that helps position yourself in your career is beneficial.
For PR students who are unsure of what career path they want to take, Krusing urged them to explore their interests.
Krusing said her interest in journalism began with print media, but evolved as the industry evolved to an interest in public relations and public affairs.
She added her passion for advocacy work led her to work in public affairs.
“It’s a great field to be in because it has boundless opportunities,” Krusing said.