First Weekend

So lets just say I am in like love with Taos!!  It is absolutely beautiful.  Don't let the small town facade and quaint vibe fool you.  The prime location of Taos allows anyone to drive an hour or two for mountain biking, hiking, skiing, or just a nice nature walk.  

(Entry Way)

This weekend a group of my friends and I took a road trip to Santa Fe!  The food was to die for, the streets were full of culture and people.  We even saw the Loretto Chapel Miraculous staircase!  The Big mystery surrounding it is he identity of its builder and the physics of its construction.

(Isn't it interesting)   

Since then my cabin has made s'mores, checked out some local hot spots, and gone on enough hiking to last us a lifetime. Anyway I better checkout and get ready for our campus cookout tonight!  I'll check in later with more SMU-in-Taos adventures!  

T-minus 1 day till Taos.

I'm back!  I know Have been MIA the past few weeks, thanks to finals, but I'm ready to hit the ground running.  After an amazingly busy semester, I am going to take a few weeks and go up to New Mexico with the SMU Taos program.  For the next three weeks I will be enjoying the beautiful landscape and avoiding the bipolar Texas summers we all know and love.

Reasons Why I Will Love Taos
  1. It's in the beautiful State of New Mexico!
  2. Classes are taught inside and outside the classroom.
  3. I will be able to go outside and not experience 100+ degree weather.
  4. Three Words: White Water Rafting.
  5. My class has less than 15 people in it.
  6. The campus is AMAZING!  
More to come soon :D 

I'm so excited to be there and can not wait to take some pictures and gain some experiences that I can share with y'all.  Anyway tomorrows going to be an early morning so I better go.  Talk to you soon!

123's and ABC's: Growing Up With Social Media

While growing up, we went to preschool to learn the fundamentals of life.  C-A-T spelt cat, a fuzzy creature that meowed.  One apple + two apples equaled three apples.  These were the basics of how we would communicate and begin to understand the world around us.  With the introduction of technology these fundamentals are just as important, but now social media is joining the ranks.
When I was young I remember logging on to my first computer.  The screen the size of a small box with games on disks the size of a DVD case.  Going to my dad's office was a treat because we didn't have a home computer.  Now my niece and nephew, ages five and three, have their own personal iPhone and download apps with a simple swipe of their little fingers.
My generation is often considered the generation of social media, but really this new group has the world at their fingertips.  My generation had social media emerge and the Internet established during the middle of our lives.  Those who are 5 or even 10 years old have never known a world without the internet, home computers, and the evolution of the smartphone.  It astounds me how social media and technological advancements are all this younger generation will ever know.
Now for all you readers I have some good news and some bad news... which would you like first? Bad news.  Ok.  The bad news is tonight is our last night of lecture. I will miss meeting with amazing professionals from the communications industry.  The good news, I will continue blogging about my general musings as a PR girl.

Technology Malfunction: PRWeek Student of the Year Competition

A few months ago I embarked on a venture to the magical city of New York City.  I was a finalist for PRWeeks Student of the Year Competition.  I had an amazing time, and had experiences that I would never have in any other situation.  I took some of the steps outlined in our first class (if something will go wrong it will- missed and delayed plane flights and to always wear flats; because you will always be running).
I ended up getting second place.  Thank you H&K and PRWeek, you gave me an experience that not many people my age will ever experience.
This blog was suppose to be posted earlier, but in true technology malfunction it didn't actually make it to the Web site.  So as predicted for any communications practice, something can always go wrong... so be prepared.

Curiosity may have killed the cat, but it's crucial to communication.

50 years ago communication was isolated to you and your city, state and country.  Whatever was going on in some obscure African nation was not in your daily newspaper or on your local television station.  Fast forward 50 years to 2011, and your communication flow is drastically different.

Now when individuals pick up their daily newspaper the headlines range from local puff pieces to national stories.  Power up your laptop or turn on your television and you will have the same phenomenon lighting up your screen.  Why does this matter?  One word: Globalization.  Because of globalization everything has become interconnected.

This new level of interconnectedness forces the flow of information to become universal not local. For those who don't understand this process, they instantly shut themselves off from anything outside of their "closed off world."  

What we as a society must understand is that everything is interdependent and interconnected.  Unfortunately because of globalizations all issues anywhere in the world impact everyone to some degree.  We must communicate all issues to everyone, and understand that we cannot communicate from an isolated position.  We, as interconnected individuals, must be curious of the surrounding world and the issues impacting it.  

Linking In: The Real Power of Online Networking

Tonight PRSSA hosted Katherine Bradford to speak about the power of online networking.  Bradford showed how students in any industry could Link In to career networking sites and unlock their potential.  Ranging from how to approach individuals online to creating a profile that's attractive to potential clients, Bradford explained the typical flaws individuals make.  

Bradford had one key theme, "The biggest take away is always stay professional."  Also, no matter what you do, understand your audience.  They determine your success or your failure.  

When creating your online profile or writing anything online understand, "what you write stays with you forever."  

The "Masters" of reputation management

Calling all golf fans!  Guess what starts today?  I'll give you a hint, green jackets, pristine greens and four days of some of the best golf you'll ever see. While I will be glued to my TV for the next few days, I will see hundreds of ads.  Each of them trying to persuade me to purchase some new golf product, except one- ExxonMobile.
Every year one ExxonMobile's ad sticks out of the golf channel noise, by focusing on a cause rather than their corporation.  Last night Matt Gobush gave our class a sneak peak at their ad that starts today.  I loved how ExxonMobile focused on the individual students and teachers and the cause, not the corporation issues.
With 5 to 10 million people tuning in to watch the Masters, this was the perfect way to reach a broad audience with minimal advertising.  I found it interesting that ExxonMobile used their advertising platform to promote a cause that they support rather than promoting the corporation.  According to Gobush, the advertising at the Masters is a "reputation play, not a call to action."
When asked why the corporation approached their advertising this way he said it was two-fold: 1)"Reputation is the foundation of advocacy." and 2)"People think of them(ExxonMobile) as oil and gas."  When focusing on a reputation play rather than asking the audience to do something, individuals instantly began to think positively about them.  This is INGENIOUS!!  I can't think of any other corporation that currently does this in the current market.  Needless to say, I feel as if ExxonMobile hit a hole-in-one with its reputation strategy.  (Insert golf clap here)