Today's Loyalist PR graduate profile features Justin Reis (2012/13) who is now employed as a Research Associate in the Loyalty division of Ipsos Reid in Toronto.
Prior to enrolling in the Post-Graduate Public Relations Program at Loyalist College, Justin completed a Bachelor's degree in Public Affairs & Policy Management from Carleton University.
Loyalist PR: What made you decide to enroll in the Post-Grad PR Program at Loyalist?
Justin: My university program had a PR class in my final year. I loved it, and decided to pursue it at the post-graduate level.
Loyalist PR: How did Loyalist PR help prepare you for your current position?
Justin: Well, first off, it got me the job. I interned in the Public Affairs division of Ipsos Reid and when there was an opening, I got a referral from my manager which got me the position.
With my PR background, I was also able to draw on real experience producing reports and other tangible things that had an effect in the real world.
As far as skills go, I work a lot with business clients. PR, from an organization perspective, is all about providing a service. I learned a lot about dealing with people from that position with our client work in second semester, which definitely prepared me for this job.
Loyalist PR: Any favourite memories from your year in Loyalist PR?
Justin: How can I pick just one? I have to say my biggest takeaway from the program was all the great experience I had with people. The people in my class, the people we did work for, the people in the community at large. We had some great times and some stressful times, but I wouldn't trade those times for anything.
Loyalist PR: Any words of wisdom to offer this year's Loyalist PR students?
Justin: First, focus on your writing. Good writing is a skill that few people have, but everyone wants. The best way to improve is to practice. Write, edit, erase, get feedback, try again. It's worth it in the end.
Second, get involved. Volunteer. Join a student organization. Employers are always looking for experience, and the best way for a student to get experience is by getting involved. It counts.
Loyalist PR: Thanks, Justin! We're proud of all you've accomplished in the short time since you've graduated. We wish you the very best of success.