Risk and Reward

In Chapter 7, Aarron Walter ends his book by discussing risks and rewards. Overall, I think this chapter concludes the book with the interesting topic of taking risks and sometimes gaining rewards in your job. After reading this chapter, I learned that this book truly taught me alot about public relations, that I had never realized before. For example, I learned about a few new types of social media tools. Additionally, I learned how although audience, content, and design are all different from each other, they are connected in a few ways.

I did not really disagree with anything in this chapter because I think it’s important to take risks to receive rewards in your job and throughout life. Taking risks teaches you the skills about going with your gut and opinion on what you think is right. I enjoyed the wrap up of this chapter and the conclusion of the book. I like how Walter reviews what he has talked about throughout the book and leaves us with this thought that designing with our personal style is essential. Overall, this was an interesting book and I think it should be used in years to come in PR Pubs classes.

Originally posted at Megan Young - Gaylord Student


In Chapter 6 on Forgiveness, Aarron Walter discusses the idea that in the public relations world, something might go wrong. For example, the story of the Flickr incident and how although the company looked like they were going down forever and would never be able to make it out of the slump, they’re still around today. In the past, I did a project on Flickr so I knew about the entire company. However, after researching their history, I did not realize that there was a storage failure in 2006. This was interesting to me and I’m surprised I didn’t know about this when researching it for my project.

One thing I don’t agree with in this chapter is how although Flickr reinvented itself, this made up for the storage failure. I think the reinvention definitely helped Flickr expand, but I don’t think this necessary made them a better form of social media. Sadly, Flickr is still not a very large part of social media, compared to its competitors like Instagram, Facebook, or Twitter. However, I do think Flickr is on the rise to becoming a more popular form of social media to use. I enjoyed this chapter because I liked reading the example about Flickr and how he connected this to forgiveness. Additionally, this chapter was short so it was easy to read.

Originally posted at Megan Young - Gaylord Student

Wrapping Up PR Pubs

Wow, this semester has flown by so fast! I can’t believe we’re finishing up our final project of the year. Well, first of all I have learned so much in this class over the course of the semester. I definitely enjoyed working in a lab-intensive environment on all of these projects and having the opportunity to learn about InDesign and Photoshop. Personally, I feel accomplished knowing more about these two program. I hope to learn more about these two programs, and I hope I have the chance to work with them at my internship or job in the future. I think these specific technology skills are important to know, especially in the public relations field, because although PR mainly consists of writing, PR practitioners should be able to create visuals for their clients as well. My favorite part of this class was being able to work on these InDesign and Photoshop because I like creating different projects and learning new skills on the programs.

Throughout this course, we also had a writing component on our blogs about the book we read at the beginning of the semester as well as describing how we went about making our projects. Personally, I did not think it was too hard to write to a public audience because of my past experiences. During my freshman year of college, I wrote blogs for OU for their prospective student blog site. In addition, while I was studying abroad in Seville, Spain, I wrote a blog for family and friends to keep up with my trip. So I enjoyed writing for a public audience, and I look forward to continue writing on this blog after PR Pubs ends.

Truly, I wish every PR class could be like this class because I enjoyed coming to class every Tuesday and Thursday! Personally, I  believe that students should have to take PR Pubs before PR Writing because then students can utilize their skills on InDesign and Photoshop on their projects in PR Writing. For my PR Writing class, we had to create a portfolio, with writing and visuals. However, I made all of my visuals on Microsoft Word. Although they ended up looking pretty good, I think it would have looked much better if I had known how to create them on InDesign or Photoshop.

Overall, I would say that this is one of the best PR classes in Gaylord. Although the class could be tough sometimes with making sure to have enough time to complete projects or not knowing how to do something on InDesign or Photoshop, I really enjoyed everything I learned throughout this class. Sometimes I feel like certain classes I take not meaningful and will not help me throughout my life. However, this course is the exact opposite. PR Pubs made me excited to work at an internship or job in the PR field, and I’m looking forward to utilizing all my new skills developed from this class in the future!

Originally posted at Megan Young - Gaylord Student

What Makes Me Smile

Throughout my college career so far, I have learned some of my passions in life. Although I thought I knew most of the things that make me happy, I have discovered two activities that truly make me smile: community service and studying abroad.

When I first came to OU, I had no idea about what activities to participate in, except for events going on within my sorority. I looked around for the first few months and couldn’t figure out what my niche could be at this school. In high school, I loved going to community service events, and on mission trips with my church. However, during my first year at OU, I couldn’t find community service events that I loved. I wanted to be involved with an organization who loved to help others in need. That’s when I discovered Soonerthon.

In March 2012, I participated in my first OU Dance Marathon, which is now called Soonerthon. I had no clue what to expect at this event, and only knew it was OU’s biggest philanthropy which raised money “For The Kids,” or (FTK). I arrived on the morning of Soonerthon with excitement in my heart and a motivation to stand for 12 hours all for the kids. With my sorority sisters by my side, we danced the day away and played with some of the sweetest and amazing kids you would ever meet. By the end of the night, I will never forget how much body, specifically my feet, ached with pain. However, when the Soonerthon chairs revealed the final total of over $100,000, the pain suddenly went away. I looked at my best friend and immediately began to weep. I couldn’t believe how much we had raised for these deserving children. That’s when it hit me: I wanted to become apart of this organization.

During the fall of my sophomore year, I applied, interviewed, and received a position on the Operations Staff of the new and improved Soonerthon. I couldn’t wait to get started and work with other people who loved this philanthropy as much as I do. After an entire year of planning and getting ready for March, Soonerthon 2013 was finally here. Once again at the final reveal, I was bawling over our final total of $196,034 all FTK. This year, I had the opportunity to serve on the Recruitment Committee of Soonerthon and once again had the experience of a life time. Since this was my second year of being apart of the giant Soonerthon family, I truly soaked up every ounce of it and when it came to final reveal, I couldn’t believe what I saw. We had raised $318,711.14. My heart overflowed with emotion. That’s when I truly felt like I found my home on campus, with these people raising all of this money FTK. Soonerthon has inspired me and my dreams in the future. I hope to either intern or work for Children’s Miracle Network or Hospitals in the PR department.

The other activity that I truly love is studying abroad. Before college, I had only traveled out of the country to Mexico and Costa Rica. I had never been to Europe, but I had a passion to go and experience the different cultures. However, during my sophomore year I received the opportunity to study abroad in Seville, Spain. My best friend and I decided to take a chance and go with students from different universities throughout the country to study Spanish in Spain. I was worried about so many things before going abroad, such as traveling to Europe with only my best friend or being pick-pocketed in the streets of Spain. In addition, my family had just decided to sell my childhood home and move into a condo a few blocks away. However, the excitement to study abroad conquered my fears and I forgot about everything I was worrying about.

After months of anticipation for this trip, we finally traveled to Seville at the end of last May. Although I had been away from my family for a month before, this was a new experience for me being over seas, and I felt bad not being there to help my family move. However, when we arrived in Spain, my whole world changed. People always tell you that you’re going to feel homesick and experience culture shock, but I was the exact opposite. Living and studying abroad in Seville made me never want to go home. I wanted to stay there forever, and keep living the relaxing, Spanish style of life. A few days before I came home, my mom even asked me if I was still coming back or staying there forever. After being back in the U.S. for a few weeks, I realized I had adjusted my lifestyle to some of the Spanish traditions. I learned so much about Spanish culture, life, and traditions while in Spain as well as discovered my passion for studying abroad. I also made life long friends through this activity, and will never forget the memories I made.

As a result of this trip, I decided to pursue this new love of mine, and thus became an alumni ambassador for my study abroad company. After learning about the other programs the company offered, I decided to study abroad again this upcoming summer in Dublin, Ireland with another best friend of mine. I look forward to learning about a new culture and once again, taking part in one of my passions.

Through both of these activities, I feel like I have found my place here on campus. Studying abroad and community service have become a part of my life that I continue to cherish every day. Without these opportunities, I would probably still be walking around OU’s campus without a clue of what I was interested in. I’m thankful for these opportunities, and hope to continue traveling abroad and volunteering at philanthropies after college. These activities will always be important to me because I’ve truly discovered two things that make me smile.


Originally posted at Megan Young - Gaylord Student

Intriguing Infographics

For assignment 5, students will design two infographics for an organization of their choice. Students should create these infographics with the help of InDesign and/or Photoshop. The infographics will be graded on specific aspects of the images, such as:

• color
• design
• creativity
• use of art
• no clutter
• layout
• clearly ties to the organization

When choosing an organization for this assignment, students should consider creating these for an organization they work with or are interested in working for in the future. Selecting an organization should be the first step the student takes in creating this project. It is also a good idea for students to consider choosing an organization that they have a relationship with, if they are in need of assistance or information from the organization. If students choose an organization that already has infographics made, then redesign these and develop your own style through these new infographics. I suggest using Pinterest as a source for ideas and look around for other organizations’ infographics on the Internet.

- Document Specifications:

Students should design each infographic to be smaller than 700 px wide and saved as a .png.

Make sure to upload both of the infographics on D2L to be graded when done with the assignment.

- Grading:

Design (80 points – 40 points for each infographic) Demonstrates proficiency in creating, design clearly ties to organization, not cluttered, color, creativity, use of art, layout, alignment, and contrast.

Self Reflection Blog Post (20 points) Explains how each infographic ties to the organization, who would be interested in these images, and how the student used design concepts to create each infographic. In addition, the student needs to explain to the audience how they designed this and what ideas helped create these graphics. Walk them through your ideas.  Also answer the questions of: What did you learn? What was difficult on this project? What was different about this project compared to the other assignments? Also, make sure to embed the infographics into the blog post to show the audience what you made.

Difficulty Level: I would rank this project with 3 stars because I think it takes time to make good and informative infographics. This should not be a fast project for the students to complete. They need to take the time to think about what organization they want their infographics to be for and how they want to design these images. I would allow the students about 2 and a half weeks to work on this assignment. Also, I would assign this in probably the middle of the semester to allow students time to understand InDesign and/or Photoshop so they can make impressive and intriguing infographics.





Originally posted at Megan Young - Gaylord Student

Assignment Two: Direct Mailers

I truly can’t believe how fast this semester is flying by. My second project for PR Pubs is now complete! For this assignment, we had to create two direct mailers for specific stakeholders going to OU. I chose to make one for incoming high school juniors and the other for students to learn about OU’s academics, so I specifically targeted National Merit Scholars.

When deciding what to do for both of these mailers, I sketched an outline of what I thought would look best and what I envisioned for these postcards. I first created the incoming high school junior direct mailer. On the front of the postcard, I used a picture of current OU students on campus to show the atmosphere of OU to the stakeholder. After looking through the prospective student pages on OU’s website, I found a sentence that said “The Only Thing Missing is You.” I really liked this, and decided to use it as my slogan. I used a Rockwell Bold Font to create an appealing, forward appearance and added the OU logo to the word “YOU.”
I made sure to put this in the upper left corner because it would blend and align with the rest of the picture and not block anything in the photo. I also kept the traditional OU crimson as the color of the font.

On the back of the postcard, I kept the right side of the card very simple by providing a spot for the postage, the address, and the return address. I aligned the postage and return address to be directly across from one another and positioned the address of the student in the middle of the card. I outlined these in a crimson red box to show they were divided and to keep it organized. On the left side of the postcard, I first created a crimson background to give contrast to the right side, which I left white. Then, I used a textured background to overlap the crimson and create a nostalgic feeling. I provided information about the upcoming OU Junior Day and personalized it to the student by saying “we want YOU and your family to visit us.” I explained what Junior Day was, and provided the link for students to go register online. All of the font on this side is in Arial regular because it looks like the official font of OU and is not as loud as Rockwell. I also made it black to offset the crimson background. Lastly, in the bottom left corner, I added a photo of a student who currently attends OU. I turned her towards the inside of the card to encompass her into the full picture, and added an informational box about her to show who she is. Below is this direct mailer:

Screen Shot 2014-03-11 at 1.52.30 PM

Screen Shot 2014-03-11 at 1.52.49 PM

For the second direct mailer, I focused on telling the National Merit Scholars about the OU program. On the front of the postcard, I used a picture of the beautiful Bizzell library. When I was a prospective student, I could not get over how gorgeous the library was, and loved to take pictures of it. It’s definitely one of my favorite buildings on campus, so I wanted to share it with these stakeholders. On the top of the photo, I changed the opacity to make it look a little faded and white so I could add the slogan and create contrast on the photo. I used the same slogan of “The Only Thing Missing is YOU” to create repetition between the two postcards. On the back of the postcard, I added information about the National Merit Scholar program here at OU. I kept the repetition of using the same design and style of the other postcard to show that the two direct mailers are related to each other. I think it’s important for them to look similar to each other so stakeholders know that they are coming from the same university. I changed the photo of the student to show variety at the college and how he is a National Merit Scholar. Additionally, I used another call to action of always providing the website and getting students to apply to our program. Below is the second direct mailer:

Screen Shot 2014-03-11 at 1.53.18 PM


Screen Shot 2014-03-11 at 1.53.39 PM

Overall, I really enjoyed this assignment because I liked creating something that relates to OU and making a direct mailer that would have been appealing to me, since I was a prospective student once upon a time. I think I improved on my use of space and making sure that the space is utilized for something important. Additionally, I think I have improved on my skills of using InDesign, which has definitely helped me. I know I still have more to learn, but I feel more confident in using it now. This assignment was different from the first assignment because we were focusing on different things. The letterhead and business card in assignment one would be utilized all the time for our personal use. Also, these documents would help stimulate recognition of our career and our organization. However, the direct mailer is being aimed at a specific group of people, and will help them learn more about OU. In both situations, the organization benefits from these documents, but they help the group in different ways. I thought the segmentation matrix was also a little difficult to understand, but it helped a little in learning which groups I should and should not target. In conclusion, this assignment was interesting to me, and I look forward to what we create next.

Originally posted at Megan Young - Gaylord Student

Overcoming Obstacles

In Chapter 5 of “Designing for Emotion”, Aarron Walter discusses overcoming the obstacles with design. One statement I had never thought about was when Walter said, “People really aren’t as lazy as we think they are. They’re just looking for the path of least resistance to their destination,” (72). Thus meaning every time we criticize someone for being lazy, this is not a true characteristic of the person. They are looking for an easy way out of things, and who doesn’t these days?

However, I almost disagree with this statement because although I wouldn’t say laziness is a characteristic, I would say that it is more of a habit. When a person is lazy and his or her friends know it, they don’t go to them as much for things because they don’t think he or she will get the job done. For example, if you were to do a group project, you wouldn’t want the person perceived as lazy to be one of your group members. You would want someone who could give back and participate in making it the best project possible. Therefore, although I did realize this statement was interesting, I do not necessarily agree with this thought.

I enjoyed this chapter, and liked how he did not write too much about this topic. Sometimes writers can write too much about a certain subject, but Walter perfectly explained overcoming obstacles without exaggerating his writing. I did not realize how short this book was, so I’m surprised how fast we’ve read through it already! I’m interested in seeing how he ends this book, so I’m planning on finishing Chapters 6 and 7. I’m curious in finding out what “Forgiveness” is in Chapter 6. Overall, it’s been an interesting book that I’ve enjoyed thus far!

Originally posted at Megan Young - Gaylord Student

Assignment One: Business Card and Letterhead

So assignment one is finally completed! I can’t believe how fast the time flew by. Although this was my first time to ever use InDesign, in my opinion I think it went pretty well! In the beginning, it was hard to grasp some of the concepts, but now I feel like I’ve gotten the hang of things.

For this assignment, we had to make a business card and letterhead for an organization. Over the past three years, I have worked with OU’s Campus Activities Council (CAC) Soonerthon. This year, I am on the executive committee of the recruitment team, and I feel like I have a personal relationship with many members of my committee. The business card and letterhead are tied to this organization by the use of logos and information provided on both of these documents. The target recipients of the business card would be businesses that we ask to sponsor the event and adults or students who want to learn more about CAC Soonerthon. The letterhead would be sent to all of the participants from the past few years, and would encourage students to sign up once again. Additionally, the letterhead could be sent to new participants as well to increase their interest in the event.

Throughout this assignment, I was able to use my knowledge of design concepts and apply them to my business card and letterhead. First for both of my documents, I wanted them to be clean-cut and not be cluttered by lots of information or images. I made sure the colors and font matched the logo and worked well together. In addition, I wanted everything to be aligned with each other, thus helping the documents appear clean.

For the business card, I envisioned the logo appearing on the front of the business card with all of the necessary information for the public to know. I made the front of the business card match the color of the logo, navy blue, and also used red Charcoal font to display my name, title, address, email, phone number and website address. In addition, I made the back of the card simple to understand. The white background helps the Children’s Miracle Network logo stand out, and the public is provided with the website once again. The contrast between the two sides gives the card a pop of color and a professional appearance. I aligned the information by what I thought looked clean and clear to the reader. All of the information is relevant and provides the important facts one needs to know about CAC Soonerthon. I also made sure that I used repetition on the business card and letterhead by using the same logos, fonts, and colors to make them similar to each other. Lastly, I used my space appropriately and the grouping of the information is logical. Below is my business card for CAC Soonerthon:

Final Business Card - Pubs BlogFront of the business card for CAC Soonerthon

Final Business Card - Pubs Blog2Back of the business card for CAC Soonerthon

For the letterhead, I envisioned a similar look to the business card to show that the two documents are related to each other. For this document, I aligned the text on the top of the letterhead to match and align with the height of the balloon logo. After that, I made the rest of the document look like a news release that could be sent out in a newsletter. The continued block of text is easy to read, and helps the reader be able to follow along easily. At the bottom of the page, I made sure to include the CAC Soonerthon logo to show that this news release is sponsored by CAC Soonerthon, and the color of the logo stands out on the page as contrast. Once again, I used the same logos, font, and colors as a source of repetition, as well as used all the space necessary to make this letterhead clear and organized. Additionally, the news release provides relevant information about CAC Soonerthon to the public, and gives more insight to this organization. Below is my letterhead for CAC Soonerthon:

Final Letterhead Pubs BlogLetterhead for CAC Soonerthon (click on image to make bigger)

Overall, I thought this assignment was very interesting and fun. In the beginning, I actually thought it was going to be extremely hard and did not even know where to begin. I tried to get the logo early on from my source, but then heard nothing from the organization so I had to be patient and start working on other parts of the assignment. I would say that getting the logo was the part I was most stuck on, but I also was stuck on InDesign sometimes. I did not always know what to do in some situations, and had to ask for help. While doing this assignment, I would say I learned a lot about InDesign, and how to work the program. I still have a lot to learn, but for now I feel a little more confident in using it. I also learned that I always need to make sure I schedule enough time in and out of class to work on assignments. After I learned more about InDesign, I would say overall it was easier than I thought it was going to be. I truly enjoyed this assignment, and feel like I learned alot! I look forward to learning more and seeing what we do next in this class.

Originally posted at Megan Young - Gaylord Student

Emotional Engagement

In Chapter 4 of “Designing for Emotion”, Aarron Walter discusses the topic of using our design persona from the last chapter and incorporating it with building interaction patterns as well as creating lasting memories in the minds of our audience. Personally, I had never thought about important the aspect of surprise is in our lives. I really liked the statement Walter writes saying, “Surprise amplifies our emotional response,” (Walter 49). If we know something is coming, it completely changes our outlook on the situation. This idea definitely made me think and realize how important this aspect is in design.

However, in this chapter I questioned one opinion about the changes of Twitter. Although I agree with the fact that many people react negatively to social media whenever it changes its appearance, I do not agree with keeping the old version on the social media site. If the social media site is eventually going to make the users change to the new version, then everyone should have to change at the same time. Although this may give the site negative feedback in the beginning, the uproar will eventually die down and some people may even like the new version better. In the end, people will like the new version and it will become the norm, until users have to deal with new updates again.

Something I have recently noticed and enjoy about this book is how everything Walter says is true and applies to Public Relations. For example, when he mentions that our goal is not to trick the public and “Your audience will catch on to your game and not trust your brand if you are deceitful,” this is extremely relevant to our field of study (Walter 49). In addition, I have always liked learning about new things, and this chapter is chalk full of them, such as Photojojo and Wufoo. I had never heard of these before, so it was interesting to read about them.

Originally posted at Megan Young - Gaylord Student


In Chapter 3 of Aarron Walter’s “Designing for Emotion”, the author discusses the topic of personality in design. In my opinion, I believe that personality is a huge part of the designing process. I had never thought though about how “Emotional design’s primary goal is to facilitate human-to-human communication,” (Walter 30). This is an interesting statement to me because I had never thought about how your design should communicate from person to person, and not just person to everyone. I thought that your design should mainly communicate to the group as a whole, not every individual person. Thus, I will try to remember this information for the future, and keep this in mind.

However at first in this chapter, I did not agree with the statement “Keep in mind that when you emphasize personality in the user experience, some people won’t like it,” (Walter 46). When first reading this, I did not agree because people should usually like anything with great personality in their experience. On the other hand, I did realize that sometimes personalities do clash with one another, and although one person might like it, the other might not. Thus, this statement did make the end of this chapter very interesting for me.

Overall, I’m still enjoying this book, specifically because of the examples provided. In this chapter, I thoroughly enjoyed the pictures that went along with the examples. I’m a visual person so this helped me understand the concepts and examples much better than before. I look forward to seeing what comes next in this book.

Originally posted at Megan Young - Gaylord Student