The following is a guest post from Jocelle Untalan, Chapter President from California State University, Long Beach.
One of the most rewarding PRSSA events I’ve ever participated in since becoming Chapter President was the PRSSA Leadership Rally.
Leadership Rally is a “weekend getaway” in Scottsdale, Ariz., where you can enjoy the scenery while strengthening your leadership skills and learning how other executive board members have succeeded in their Chapters.
Attending the Rally is one of the perks of becoming a Chapter President. Yes, it is highly recommended that the president attend, but if there are scheduling conflicts, you can contact PRSSA headquarters to see if another board member may represent the Chapter in lieu of the president. Fortunately, I was able to attend not only the first rally, but also the second rally.
Once you register, you are assigned a room with two or three other registrants. Your roommates can be from a nearby state or across the country. My roommates have come from schools ranging from Sacramento State University in California to Howard University in Washington D.C. The night of arrival consists of a reception and a meet-and-greet. This is a great opportunity to network with the new presidents. I was fortunate enough to meet some of my good friends at Leadership Rally and continued to build upon my network of fellow public relations students.
There are some key things everyone should take-away from attending Leadership Rally. It’s important to know that all Chapters — big or small — have problems. Whether you are an Alpha Chapter or a new Chapter, there is always a challenge to overcome. One of the sessions that was most helpful for me was the Chapter discussion for leaders from similar-size Chapters. Attendees are split into three groups according to Chapter size (small, mid-size and large), and everyone has an opportunity to offer advice to other Chapters about how they managed certain obstacles. Many Chapters found commonalities to problems and brainstormed solutions.
But of course, with every PRSSA event, there is always the socializing. Attendees should take advantage of the opportunity to get to know their roommates and new friends by exploring Scottsdale. The Rally goes beyond the sessions and group discussions; it’s about getting to know your fellow future public relations professionals.
I recommend every Chapter President attends Leadership Rally because not only did I connect with other presidents, but I was also motivated to explore different opportunities my Chapter had not experienced. I wish I could attend this year’s Leadership Rally, but it’s time to pass the “PRSSA Baton” to the next president — and I’m looking forward to what she has to say about her experience.
Note: This year’s Leadership Rally will be June 11–13 in Scottsdale, Ariz. Registration is on the PRSSA website until May 14 and there is no charge for this event. Additionally, PRSSA will cover the costs of a quad room for attendees. Be sure to register today!