Category:Bradley Public Relations Agency

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Bradley Public Relations Agency

BYU PRWeek 2010.jpg

Established in 1969, the BYU chapter of PRSSA became the 17th student association in the nation. By 1986, the Bradley Public Relations Agency, named in honor of Rulon L. Bradley, was officially formed to bridge the gap between the classroom and hands-on experience.

In its 22-year existence, the Bradley Agency has maintained a consistent workload of a dozen or more clients with upwards of 80 students participating at any given time. It has been recognized as the best PRSSA chapter firm in the nation six times during that span.

As the student-run organization grew, students in the firm had less and less mentoring by professional advisers and insufficient tie to courses. In 2007, the Department of Communications restructured the agency, hired a full-time lab manager and integrated the firm into the public relations curriculum.

The goal of the new lab is to provide students with an opportunity to apply public relations principles to create strategic communications campaigns for actual clients.

Jeff DuBois, the newly named manager of the lab, hopes to bring more structure to the agency and will be a mentor for students as they work to meet campaign objectives for various client projects. The agency will be taking on fewer but more substantial projects.

“We provide the resources of a university and fresh talent at a fraction of the cost,” DuBois said. “It’s a true win-win for organizations that want to augment their communications efforts, especially given that our PR students have always excelled at knowledge-driven, and not assumption-driven, public relations initiatives.”

Current clients include American Red Cross, the Utah Humanities Council, Human Resources Association of Central Utah, Utah Department of Transportation and Millenniata.

Whenever appropriate, the lab introduces client work directly into the classroom environment, with account executives from the Bradley agency acting as client liaisons for the class. These students serve as unofficial TAs for professors and are on hand to help students as they progress through the course.

Client projects are introduced in the public relations research and measurement course (COMMS 318) which collects data with qualitative and quantitative research methods. Students from the strategic public relations campaigns course (COMMS 485), the capstone of the program, also work on the campaigns.

Where the class ends, the Bradley Agency picks up and executes campaign strategies and tactics. Because account executives have been involved from the beginning, the agency is able to seamlessly transition from the classroom to the lab, avoiding painful learning curves.

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