Coyne PR, one of the nation’s leading consumer public relations agencies, hosted a career exploration event for 30 SC&I students on November 16, 2022.
Held in collaboration with the Rutgers chapter of the Public Relations Student Society of America (PRSSA) based at SC&I and SC&I Careers, the event was organized by Assistant Professor of Professional Practice Mark Beal and Assistant Director of Student Services for Career Services Ildi Koczan.
"Our SC&I students fully leveraged this opportunity,” Beal said. “They so impressed the executives at Coyne with their engaging conversations and questions that several of the students were offered paid spring internships. Making that type of strong impression is representative of our current outstanding SC&I students and recent graduates who are delivering measurable value as interns and full-time executives each day at leading agencies, corporations, brands and organizations."
Coyne PR, based in Parsippany, N.J. with offices in New York City, employs a team of nearly 200 executives, including a group of SC&I alumni who work there full-time, and interns from SC&I.
According to its website, Coyne’s clients include BMW, Pfizer, VTech, and Courvoisier. Founded in 1991, Coyne PR was named the “Best Place to Work” in 2020 by PRWeek; the “Best Midsize Agency to Work for in North America” in 2021 by PRovoke Media; and in 2022, Coyne PR’s CEO and founder Tom Coyne was named “Best CEO of the Year” by the PR News Platinum Awards.
The career exploration event began with a presentation from Coyne PR's Chief People Officer and head of human resources, who greeted the students and explained the agency’s internship program and the qualifications the agency looks for in job candidates and interns.
Coyne PR’s president and senior vice president then led the students on guided tours of the agency's headquarters. The tours gave the students an opportunity to hear creative brainstorming sessions and visit the creative content design center.
The agency then hosted a panel discussion which included the president as well as the senior executives who lead media relations, social media, influencer marketing, and creative design. The panel discussed how PR has evolved over the past 10-20 years.
The final panel featured all Rutgers alums (Communication and Journalism and Media Studies majors) who discussed their full-time roles at Coyne and answered many questions from the students.
Two of the students who attended the event said the experience was valuable. Naamah Barbut, who will graduate with a bachelor’s degree in Communication in May 2023 and will earn her Master of Communication and Media degree in 2024, said, “The trip was a great opportunity for me to see what my future may hold in the workforce. It's really important for me to do something that I love with my career and going to Coyne reassured me that a PR agency is where I want to be, the creative energy, collaboration, and fast-paced environment are qualities that I saw at Coyne that I would want in my job coming out of college.”
Matthew Shapiro COM’22, who will earn an MCM in 2023, is one of the students who obtained an internship with Coyne this spring as a result of the trip. He said, "I got the chance to experience what a real-world Public Relations agency is like while hearing about all of the exciting and impactful work they do for some of the most popular brands. Having the opportunity to network and ask questions to experienced employees and interns helped to answer some questions that I had about public relations, what a day of working for an agency is like, and insightful tips about navigating my career within the public relations industry! Thank you to SC&I and Professor Beal for setting up the visit to Coyne PR! It was such a great experience."
Noting that for many of the students, this career exploration event was the first opportunity they have had to walk the halls of one of the nation's top-ranked public relations and integrated marketing communication agencies, Beal said the event "served as a powerful form of experiential learning. Additionally, our students were able to connect and collaborate with leaders at all levels of the agency from the president to recent SC&I alums who are now full-time executives managing campaigns for category-leading companies."
Learn more about the Communication major, the Journalism and Media Studies major, and the Master of Communication and Media Program at the Rutgers School of Communication and Information on the website.
Photos: SC&I students photographed in the Coyne PR lobby; Coyne PR President Rich Lukis meets with the students; Coyne PR Senior Vice President Brian Murphy on a tour with the students; SC&I alumna who are Coyne PR executives with SC&I interns.
Photo credit: Mark Beal.