By. Hannah Thorn (@_hannahthorn_)
When I came to Oshkosh in September of 2015 I had no idea what I wanted to do with my life. I choose Oshkosh because I wanted to run cross country and track here. My dad knew this so during my first semester he told me I had to take a “Discovering Your Major” course through our Student Success Center. It was a one credit class that ended up pointing me towards public relations.
I went into that class vaguely thinking that I wanted to go into the business field. I liked the idea of working with many different people and working with technology, specifically social media. Since I had no idea what public relations was I thought I would use this class to look into the marketing, advertising, and business programs that Oshkosh offers. What I found was that these careers would probably bore me. I remember having to find a specific major to research for the final project and I chose human resources. I knew this career would let me work with many people, but it just sounded like a lot of paperwork and not enough creativity. It was during this final project that I stumbled across our Journalism department page. I didn’t think much of it because I was thinking “oh I don’t want to be a reporter”. Oh how dumb that assumption was.
I left the class thinking I had time to discover what I wanted to do, but if I had to declare I would choose human resources as my major. Later, I started talking to one of my cross country teammates who was a human relations major and she started telling me about her classes. I started getting worried because it did not sound like something I would enjoy. By this time I had to start scheduling classes for spring semester of my sophomore year and I did not know what I wanted to do with my life. I met with my advisor and she calmed me down. I talked to her about what I wanted to do. She pointed me back to that Journalism department page that I had visited over a year before. I dipped my toe into the journalism department and took a class called Introduction to Media. That class is what gave me my first taste of what Public Relations is. Shortly after that I went to a PRSSA meeting. I did not speak at all. In fact, I think I said three words my entire first semester in PRSSA.
Even though I didn’t talk in the PRSSA meetings I learned what I could do with the public relations major and I started to really fall in love with public relations. I took more classes in the journalism department, I declared it my major, I became the public outreach chair in PRSSA, I went to PRSSA’s national conference, and now I am fully immersed in the crazy family that is the journalism department at Oshkosh. And I couldn’t be happier.