This weekend was a very exciting and educational experience for members of the St. Edward’s University Public Relations Student Society of America (PRSSA) Chapter who attended the 2010 PRSSA National Assembly. The National Assembly is an annual event, which was held in Austin this year. We were more than happy to welcome students from over 260 universities across the country to our hometown. The purpose of the Assembly is for the election of the PRSSA National Committee. The National Committee election process is something that each Chapter around the nation takes part in. Each PRSSA Chapter elects one member to serve as a delegate at the Assembly, the person who votes for the National Committee on behalf of their Chapter. The election process is very important, and quite formal; in fact, the entire third day of Assembly was devoted to the elections, because it is very a long process.
The Assembly began on Thursday, March 12th and ended Sunday, March 14th. During the three days of Assembly, there were many activities and sessions for PRSSA members to take part in.
The first night focused on welcoming everyone to the Assembly and networking with other PRSSA members from across the nation. We became familiar with the Assembly schedule and what each day would entail.
The second day of the National Assembly was filled with informational sessions. The sessions were very similar to the ones Ally Hugg, the SEUPRSSA President, and I experienced last year at the Assembly in New Orleans. Last year, we found the sessions to be very helpful; they provided us with new insights and ideas to bring back to our Chapter. This year, we were excited that our attending SEUPRSSA members were able to experience these sessions and take all that they could from them. The first part of the morning was devoted to Chapter officer sessions. The sessions were broken into groups and members would attend the officer session they were currently in or hoped to be elected into. The sessions were split into:
- Presidents/Vice Presidents/ Firm Directors
- Public Relations/ Liaisons/ Historians
- Secretaries/Treasurers/ Webmasters
- National Officer Preparation
These sessions were to inspire officers and bring new ideas to their Chapters. Ally Hugg, Courtney Medford, and I attended the Presidents/Vice Presidents/Firm Directors session. Through the session, we learned ways to recruit new members, tips on how to decide the tasks of an officer, point system strategies, and ways to make each Chapter the best it could be.
“I was glad to get advice from other Chapter Presidents of the best ways to transition officer titles. I know that when I graduate, the next President will be prepared and ready because of the strategies I learned about passing along my duties,” said Hugg.
As the morning went on, we attended Leadership Training sessions. The sessions were based on protecting your personal brand, problem solving within a chapter, and how personality types can affect group dynamics. Each meeting was insightful and fun. My favorite session out of the three was, “Does my Personality Affect Group Dynamics?”
For this session, we were given a test to figure out our personality type – designed to assign each person a color based on their answers. Once we answered the questions and added up our scores, we split into groups based on our assigned color. The colors were blue, green, gold, and orange. In these groups, we talked about how we fit into the color traits. For example I am a blue person. A blue personality type is someone who is enthusiastic, sympathetic, personal, warm, communicative, peaceful, and sincere. We read about how we interact in work, in love, and in childhood. Everyone in my group shared stories and examples of how the blue personality type fit them perfectly. Next, all of the groups composed symbols and logos that represented their personality type. For the blue group, we decided to focus on how we are emotional and caring for people. We long to be sympathetic to others’ needs, and are compassionate in every aspect of life. The blue team composed a cloud with symbolic raindrops falling into an umbrella. The umbrella held the rain as we hold on to others obstacles and try our best to help them through it. Some of the water missed the umbrella and went on the ground where flowers grew. The flowers symbolized how we are rooted in our ways and stand tall for ourselves and for people around us.
All of the colors in the room presented their personalities to the other groups and discussed how all our personalities were different. I found out that a green person is very analytical, logical, a perfectionist, and hypothetical which is the complete opposite of a blue person. Though blue and green personalities can clash, they need to be dynamic in group settings for everyone in the team to succeed. This exercise made everyone realize that we all have differences in how we work and feel but we can all work together and be a driven force. I thought of my peers in PRSSA and our different personality colors. Knowing how these personalities are categorized helped me understand my peers and how we can overcome a lot as a group if we distinguish the best ways our individual personalities can work together.