Stephanie Murphy was a member of the dedicated student team from Centennial College that won the #CPRSACE Student Public Relations Communications Plan of the Year. At the 2016 CPRS Toronto ACE Awards Gala, her team won for the Civic Action/Project Fusion campaign titled “Know the Signs” which focused on educating and building awareness around mental health in the workplace.
With the upcoming 2017 ACE Awards Gala just around the corner on May, 2nd, PRS interviewed Stephanie one year later to reflect on her CPRS achievements and see what she’s been up to since her big win.
- What’s been the most rewarding part of winning the CPRS ACE Student Public Relations Plan of the Year?
Overall, it was very humbling and nice to get recognition. My team and I worked hard all year for the campaign so it felt wonderful to be invited to the gala and to be included within the PR community. The Canadian Red Cross team was proud I got to be a part of it too.
- Where are you working now?
I was a Canadian Red Cross intern from April to May 2016 and after that I was hired on as a coordinator. I’ve been working on the communications and public engagement team ever since. I love it!
- What’s your day-to-day role?
Part of my time is spent supporting the Ontario communications team on a variety of tasks including media monitoring, design, research and writing, among other things. I also work on a partnership the Canadian Red Cross has with Global Affairs Canada to raise awareness about humanitarian work we do internationally. This involves organizing speaker events, finding opportunities for public engagement, and working on our annual Faces of Humanity campaign.. It’s a great learning environment because no two days are alike.
- Has your path in PR changed from what you wanted when you were a student or freshly graduated?
I originally thought an agency would be a good place to start, as I thought it would offer a variety of learning opportunities, but I’ve always been more passionate about non-profit organizations. When I was a student, the Canadian Red Cross internship opportunity came my way and it seemed like a great chance to dive into the non-profit sphere.
- What’s your advice to current PR students aspiring to win the award?
I suggest that if you’re interested you should push yourself to apply. It’s a great chance to receive more exposure in the PR community and to network with other PR professionals at the awards ceremony. Ask yourself, ‘Why not?’ You have nothing to lose!
- Looking back what is one takeaway from the award you would like current students to know? Is there one piece of advice you would like to give them?
The ACE Awards offered me a great networking opportunity right at the beginning of my career. I valued the experience of submitting for the award as well because it helped me build my professional portfolio.
- What skills did you harness when you worked on the campaign that you use everyday at work?
Team work is an essential PR skill that is a part of almost everything I’ve worked on so far in my career. It’s so important to learn how to be a respectful, accountable and helpful team player.
JOIN US AT THE 2017 CPRS ACE AWARDS GALA ON MAY 2nd AT THE ARCADIAN COURT. TICKETS AVAILABLE HERE.
Written by Alessandra Manieri, Ryerson University graduate and public relations postgraduate from Humber College. Currently working as a PR Coordinator at Strategic Objectives.