Monday, June 16, 2008

Freeze Frame with Sarah Koester (Loyalist PR 07/08)

Today’s Freeze Frame features Sarah Koester (Loyalist PR 07/08) who is now working as a Public Relations Assistant with the St. Boniface General Hospital & Research Foundation in Winnipeg, Manitoba.

Prior to enrolling in the Post-Grad Public Relations Program at Loyalist College, Sarah earned a B.A. in Politics and Criminal Justice Studies from the University of Manitoba.

Freeze Frame: What are your duties since you began working at the St. Boniface General Hospital & Research Foundation?

Sarah Koester: I have been primarily involved in event planning. This has involved setting up vendors, for special events, and soliciting donations for raffle prizes, takeaway gifts, and auctions. Other event planning aspects have included coordinating donation pickup schedules, and creating event information packages that are sent to potential event sponsors.

From the communications side I recently wrote a communications plan for an upcoming Foundation fundraising event. I’ve written a few stories for the spring edition of the Foundation newsletter, and I also recently had the opportunity to write the speaking notes for a Foundation news conference.

FF: How did your internship help prepare you for your current position?

SK: My internship actually turned into my current position, so it was a seamless transition. The staff at the Foundation has been nothing but encouraging. They aren’t afraid to let me try new things, which is essential when you’re looking to gain practical experience.

Additionally, my internship has provided me with great networking opportunities, and a chance to work in a fully bilingual environment which has given me the opportunity to exercise my French language skills.

FF: What were the top three lessons you learned from Loyalist PR?

SK: First, always tell the true, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth! Second, if something goes wrong at an event and no one notices, then nothing went wrong. And finally, write, write write, then repeat.

FF: What's the best-kept secret about living in Winnipeg?

SK: Winnipeg has brutal winters, but beautiful summers. When the snow melts the city comes to life. There are tons of great festivals, restaurants, and beautiful parks. We’re often overlooked, but it’s not a big deal, it’s what maintains our low cost of living!

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