A Southeast Missouri State University student, Ryan Marx of St. Louis, gained international public relations insight with 18 students from other institutions while attending the International Public Relations Seminar this summer in London.
“This course has educated me about public relations (PR) as it is practiced globally and has prepared me to practice public relations from a global perspective,” Ryan said.
The participants stayed at Regents College and attended a global communications course from 9 a.m. to noon every Monday through Thursday. In class, the students analyzed the impact of global communications in historic and current events and discussed global public relations ethics while examining a variety of social norms of other countries.
“This seminar has taught me a lot about myself as well as the importance of diversity and culture. I feel in order to excel in global PR, we need to learn how to adapt to these cultures and understand their beliefs,” Ryan said.
The students were taken on tours of Times of London, Bank of America, Ketchum Pleon and the U.S. Embassy, and they listened to guest speakers from Kaizo Communications and TBM UK External Relations, among other organizations.
During his spare time in London, Ryan attended a performance of Les Misérables and visited museums, parks and King Henry VIII’s Hampton Court Palace.
“This experience really changed my views on how I interpret my surroundings. I am able to realize and identify other people’s culture a lot better after this experience,” he said.
Ryan will graduate in May 2012 with a bachelor’s degree in mass communication with emphases in public relations and journalism.
Ryan said he believes his time at Southeast has contributed to his success in and out of the classroom.
“Diversity is always present on campus. I am also challenged to get outside of my comfort zone and take action when I need to complete assignments. I feel Southeast has also taught me about why it’s important to have effective communication skills, especially while working with a group of people. The importance of time management is another skill Southeast has taught me,” he said.
Ryan has travelled overseas four times, having visited London and Germany both twice. He said his favorite place to visit is Jamaica, though. He went there during his sophomore year of college and said he had a great time relaxing on the beach.
In Cape Girardeau, Ryan enjoys dining out, especially at Port Cape, working out at the Student Recreation Center and playing PS3 with his roommate. He said he also enjoys listening to music, photography, writing and art.
Ryan encourages future Southeast students, “Take advantage of any opportunities Southeast connects you with, because it’s a great chance to network as well as gain experience.”