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By: Geoff Renstrom

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Apr 6, 2017 | Linhart Blog, Our Culture

Q&A: Insights from a 2017 PRSA/Colorado Shadow Day Student

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Each year, Linhart PR gets to work with the next generation of PR professionals by participating in the PRSA/Colorado Shadow Day. The annual event pairs college students with PR firms, corporate PR teams, government agencies and non-profits to give students a glimpse of a day in the life for Colorado PR professionals.

This year, we were honored to host Paul Brandon Baker, a senior at Black Hills State University in South Dakota.  Here is what Brandon had to say about the experience:

Tell us the story behind your name.

My name is Paul Brandon Baker, after Paul, my father. I’ve always gone by Brandon (sometimes as Small Paul) to avoid confusion. When deciding what name to go by for the remainder of my life, I concluded that P. Brandon Baker was the best way to introduce myself. It rolls off the tongue like E.E. Cummings or J.K. Rowling, at least that’s what I keep telling my acquaintances.

Where are you from?

I’m a student at Black Hills State University (BHSU) in Spearfish, South Dakota. BHSU is where I have been learning, studying and breathing public relations for the past few years. I’ve lived in South Dakota for 22 long years, and am ready to spread my wings and see where they can take me — “Like a bird far, far away,” as Jenny Gump would say.

What excites you about the PR profession?

Following the path of an aspiring PR professional, the most exciting thing to me is working with a team and helping people in any way I can. Witnessing what my work can do for somebody else is rewarding. I can’t wait for that feeling of team accomplishment. I’m also excited to work in a field that is constantly changing and requires an open mind and ability to adapt.

What are the biggest insights or takeaways from the day?

I’m excited to connect with my fellow BHSU classmates after Shadow Day to share the insights that we gained. Shadow Day is a brilliant opportunity for those of us interested in a PR career to get a glimpse into this field. I can’t express my gratitude enough for Linhart PR and the other organizations in Denver willing to let students see what this career has to offer. The experience and insight I have gained are unmatched by any university course or seminar. The best way to learn is by doing, but the next best thing is PRSA Shadow Day. Coming from rural South Dakota, getting a small taste of life here in Denver and colorful Colorado is a breath of fresh air.

The key takeaway from this wonderful day is that Linhart PR has team members who started as interns. That is inspirational. Lately, I’ve found myself saying, “You need experience to get a job and a job to get experience.” I’ve been trying to figure out which one happens first. Here at Linhart PR, they give people the chance to get that experience and turn it into a career. I couldn’t be more thankful for an organization with a model such as that.

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