Winn Maddrey ’91 Shares Tips on Breaking into PR

Winn Maddrey ’91 (history), Senior VP at Fleishman-Hillard, a top global PR agency and full-service communications firm, visited campus in February during Wildcat Career Week to share tips with students about breaking into PR.  He talked a bit about the four different PR branches—government, corporate, non-profit, and media relations–and benefits and drawbacks to working at each one.

Mr. Maddrey mentioned the below four skills necessary for a career in PR that liberal arts students bring to the table and should emphasize in their applications and networking efforts:

  • The ability to sift through and “boil down” a lot of information
  • The ability to ask insightful and inquisitive questions
  • Critical thinking
  • The ability to effectively share information within and across groups

If you land an interview with a PR firm, he suggests the following:

  • Read the local paper – in hard-copy form – and understand both the content and how it is organized.
  • Know how the PR and advertising worlds function by reading publications such as PR Week and Ad Week.
  • Do your research and get to know the company’s clients so that you will be informed during the interview.

If you are actively looking into a career in PR, make an appointment with us to talk about additional tips and alumni resources!

Thanks to CSA Morgan Orangi ’13 for contributing to this post.



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