| February 23rd, 2023
Asya Griffin Moderates Panel Discussion
By: Zion Kelly
Tallahassee, FL, February 22, 2023 – The event “Exploring Careers in Public Relations,” presented by SJGC’s Office of Jobs and Internships and the Capital Chapter of the Florida Public Relations Association (FPRA), panelist’s driving message on February 21, 2023, was let’s keep more talent in Tallahassee. Asya M. Griffin, a fourth-year public relations student from Tallahassee, shined as the moderator to 60-plus students attending the event in the SJGC Lecture Hall.
Public Relations professors Dr. Bettye Grable and Dr. Deborah Thigpen, in attendance at the event, agree this is an excellent opportunity for J-School students to network and get the inside scoop on what to expect for careers in PR. The panelists involved in this conversation are successful Public Relations professionals in their respective fields.
Tonja H. Ward is a Strategic Planning and Digital Content Consultant and weekend announcer for praiseLive. Ward is also the Co-Founder of the Charlie & Tonja Ward Family Foundation. Chirag Shah is the Founder and CEO of The Current Agency and Made Equal Clothing CO., his digital and creative ad agency, and clothing brand startup. Kelly Corder APR, CPRC, is the director of media relations for Sachs Media, where she manages several accounts, including Ben Crump Law and The Florida Bar. Nipa Eason is a Creative Director for SalterMitchell PR; she is an accomplished visual storyteller working for many top brands, such as Sony Pictures.
Kyya Smith is an Account Coordinator for Salter Mitchell PR also a recent fall 2021 graduate of SJGC.
As the moderator, Asya made a positive impression on the panelist; they praised her for doing an outstanding job. Griffin prepared unique questions for each panelist based on their backgrounds and professional careers. Griffin moderated the conversation so that each panelist could speak on their strengths and share meaningful experiences with the audience.
Griffin said she was well prepared despite it being her first time moderating a panel conversation. “Once I received the panelists’ names, I did research by looking at websites and asking around to get more information on their backgrounds,” Griffin said.
“I ensured I knew what to ask and what information was useful. I also wanted to point out information that other students would want to know.”
Griffin believes this event successfully gave meaningful advice to SJGC students and potentially expanded their networks.
“Events such as this have a positive impact; it allows students to get more involved in the Tallahassee community,” Griffin said. “It allows students to branch out and network in their career fields.”
Asya Griffin’s Internship Experience
Griffin is a public relations fellow with the Leon County Property Appraiser Fellowship Innovation and Excellence in Property Assessment Program.
Griffin stated that she received this opportunity by persistently contacting individuals on LinkedIn. She contacted Valencia Scott, the Deputy Director of Public Relations at Leon County Property Appraiser’s Office, where she works. She is receiving hands-on experience in the public relations field as a college student. “I have the opportunity to work on outreach events and social media content creation.”
Griffin stated that her current internship is beneficial, especially in connecting her with FPRA and other organizations in Tallahassee.
Griffin suggests that SJGC students should take advantage of school-sponsored events and connect with people currently in the FPRA capitol chapter in Tallahassee.
She advises students to “always put yourself out there” and not to fear reaching individuals for opportunities. Griffin aspires to work for a PR agency upon graduating in December 2023.
Griffin serves as the event coordinator for the award-winning J-School Journals. She is also gaining real-world experience with SJGG’s PR Agency, working on the Miracle Hill Nursing and Rehabilitation Center account to help rebrand the facility. She enjoys helping others and serving her community.
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PR Agency@SJGC is a student-run Public Relations Firm/PUR4800 Course that expands on developing campaign strategies and objectives and creating materials for media toolkits.