This week we interviewed Naomi Lambert, a sophomore in COM double majoring in public relations and film & TV. Naomi is from New Rochelle, New York.
What made you join PRSSA?
That’s a funny story. When I came to BU I was set as a film and TV major, but then after taking a few COM classes I thought public relations was really interesting. I love storytelling and the creative side of film and TV, but in PR you’re able to take a story that already exists and advocate for something and get passionate with it. My friend Imani was also doing two majors and one of them was also PR, so I was talking to her about it and what else I should do to get more involved in the major at BU. She said, “Come to PRSSA!” She said this was the club, this is the gang, this is where the true BU PR squad gathers. I definitely thought to myself, “Oh, I need to get in this so I can be a legitimate PR student walking through the halls of BU”. I didn’t really know what to expect from a PR club but seeing all the speakers and stuff has been really inspiring. Every Thursday I feel rejuvenated to do my COM assignments and think more about my future. Every time we have a speaker it’s just a reminder that PR gets you somewhere, that this is a real career and there are so many possibilities in it. It’s really mind blowing.
What’s your dream job?
Right now I have so many opportunities, especially in terms of studying abroad. BU is awesome because I could go for film and TV or for PR so I’m so grateful because there are so many other kids who don’t know what they want to do with their lives, or don’t have the opportunities or resources to really go after their dreams. And while I’ve been at BU, all the doors have been opened already. This is what’s been my dream since I was a little kid: to work in the entertainment industry, whether that’s film or being a scriptwriter or a publicist. That’s always been my dream and I always thought I’d get there someday, and at BU there are literal steps in front of me. As long as I follow through and continue to work hard and seek help from teachers and advisors I know that it can come true. The dream for me is to be a scriptwriter for a television show, but even that’s a little far-fetched. The entertainment industry is constantly changing, so you don’t know what will happen one day to the next. But PR is a very stable profession to go for. You always need someone to advocate for a story or fix a crisis, so I’d love to be on the PR team for a celebrity or a networker who’s really established. Anything within the entertainment marketing industry.
Who has been your favorite speaker from our weekly meetings?
There have been so many great speakers this semester. Everyone’s been great in different ways. It’s great when speakers contribute different personal stories about PR. For example, my own professor Richard Greif brought his knowledge of working with Big Brothers Big Sisters of Massachusetts Bay. That was really cool because we already heard about it in class and he gave more detailed stories about the PR side, which was very interesting. Monique from Weber Shandwick I also really appreciated. At the regional conference I saw her again and it was so cool to see her speak because we already heard her in our meeting, so having that knowledge already really contributed to what I took away from her presentation. I also loved the motivational speaker from the conference, Brandi from IBM. I loved her tone, and you could tell she was made to give these types of motivational speeches. When I talk about PRSSA giving me the motivation to strive for more, she was the epitome of that moment where I realized, wow, dreams come true. I’ll always remember that.
What has been your favorite class taken at COM?
I’ve taken so many COM classes because of my double major, but I have to give a shout out to Professor Eddy Downes. I’ve never been in a long-table-type classroom, so that made it feel more like I wasn’t just a student behind a desk. It felt more like we were all equals and professionals when we’d do things like pitch our ideas. He really listened to our opinions and he was always asking for how we felt about things. He was great at listening to what I had to say and the class’ overall attitude was really inviting, even when it came to test taking. It was a very relaxed class setting. He is a very kind man, and he even brought in Dunkin Donuts for people. The atmosphere he created was very inviting and I’ll never forget that class.
What is your opinion on the evolving role of PR given today’s social and political climate?
Just focusing on the social media component – as soon as a story hits, social media can run with it and make it its own entire story. PR is more important now than ever because there are so many different outlets telling their own version of the truth. Fake news, as we’ve studied in our classes, is a threat to the truth. Lots of people think PR people take a situation and mislead people or hide the truth, shaping it to mean something else. But that might just be the Hollywood version, what we see on TV and in dramas. Not every publicist deals with the scandals of Miss Olivia Pope. We need to make sure we have people out there who have values and can really advocate for stories and be the voice for people or causes who wouldn’t normally be heard, bringing attention to the things that matter. PR is really at the head of that movement.
Edited by Veronica Paskulin