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Professor gives SPJ lecture about careers in journalism

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Professor gives SPJ lecture about careers in journalism

Professor Jason Lovins lectures students about their future careers Tuesday in the Marvin L. Stone Reading Room.

Professor Jason Lovins lectures students about their future careers Tuesday in the Marvin L. Stone Reading Room.

Andrea Steele

Professor Jason Lovins lectures students about their future careers Tuesday in the Marvin L. Stone Reading Room.

Andrea Steele

Andrea Steele

Professor Jason Lovins lectures students about their future careers Tuesday in the Marvin L. Stone Reading Room.

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Journalism and public relations students attended a Society of Professional Journalists lecture regarding their future careers and remaining time at Marshall University.
Professor Jason Lovins spoke to the group  Tuesday about their chosen majors and why students choose one over the other.
Most of the students present were online, print or broadcast journalism majors.
Lovins told the students about the strong relationship between journalists and public relations representatives and why each is necessary in today’s media.
Lovins said it was a good idea to bring both PR and news reporting students into the same educational experience because they are connected.
He emphasized reporters need PR people and PR people need reporters, in a symbiotic relationship.
Lovins said he thinks field journalists make good PR candidates because experience in the field can be of great help to someone interested in changing to a PR career.
He also addressed some misconceptions about working in PR, such as thinking PR is all about being a paid advocate for a company and is a cushy job.
“PR is not all good news,” Lovins said. “Sometimes you have to deliver bad news.”
Lovins cautioned the students about switching from journalism to PR, explaining there is a big change from having to answer tough questions to just asking them.
Lovins also answered questions from the students regarding the lecture, such as what to do if a person refuses to be interviewed and if the PR representative will not elaborate during an interview. He explained these are some of the common problems journalists face and they may need to find their own solutions, as each situation is unique.
Lovins has a background in both journalism and PR. He switched between the two multiple times throughout his career before accepting a teaching position at Marshall.
Lovins worked as managing editor at two Ohio newspapers and with PR teams at hospitals and in environmental cleanup for more than ten years.
Matthew Eplion can be contacted at [email protected]

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1 Comment

One Response to “Professor gives SPJ lecture about careers in journalism”

  1. Michael Johnson on April 2nd, 2015 10:48 am

    Public relations/corporate communications jobs are considered cushy jobs because getting hired primarily is based on connections. Many companies consider public relations a glamorous, high-profile department and only want to hire a certain demographic (white women comprise the majority of public relations professionals, according to the Public Relations Society of America). If it is a position with some level of power and responsibility, then a male will be hired.

    The majority of people I’ve met in public relations positions tend to fit the same profile: Most have little to any journalism background and got their positions because of networking. Moreover, I’ve seen, met and know people with backgrounds that don’t resemble a communications field (such as a graphic design or engineering) being hired to run communications departments. That is because most companies either don’t take that area seriously or it is a job promised to someone to give them a high profile/little responsibility.

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