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Grand Valley to host public relations student conference

  • Members of the planning committee finalize plans for the upcoming PRSSA Regional Conference

Posted on April 02, 2012

More than 120 students are coming to Grand Rapids from universities throughout Michigan and Ohio to explore opportunities in public relations careers. The regional conference, hosted by the Grand Valley Public Relations Student Society of America, is a two-day event that will take place April 13 and 14 in downtown Grand Rapids at the Amway Grand Plaza Hotel.

The conference, entitled “LimitlessPR: Creating your future in GR,” will give students an opportunity to tour the city and visit public relations offices at Helen DeVos Children’s Hospital, the MLive Media Hub and the public relations firm Lambert, Edwards and Associates.

Students will hear public relations speakers from a variety of industries including tourism, sports, education and government. Michele Begnoche, communications specialist from the Pure Michigan campaign, will give the keynote speech.

Student Samatha Bourque, vice president of the Regional Conference, says the field of public relations has a limitless number of opportunities. “Public relations goes beyond the usual corporate and agency routes and plays a role in almost every other career field out there,” said Bourque. “Our goal is to introduce students to these fields and show them the variety of the opportunities they have, as well as display how great the city of Grand Rapids is as both a place to work and to live.”

Tim Penning, associate professor and academic advisor to GVSU PRSSA, said the conference will benefit both the chapter and the School of Communications as a whole. “It’s a testament to the hard work of our students that this event is happening here because the conference needed to be proposed and approved by the national office in New York,” said Penning.

Penning said the conference will also be a great opportunity for the local public relations professionals speaking at the conference to demonstrate the high caliber of practitioners in Grand Rapids.

Aside from the networking mixer at the Amway Grand, Bourque said there will be plenty of opportunities to form valuable connections with students from across the region, as well as professionals on the state and local level.

To find out more information about LimitlessPR visit: or follow on Twitter at @PR_GR.

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