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Nurturing the Next Generation of PR Professionals

Posted by Zen | 29th November 2023

Nurturing the Next Generation of PR Professionals

Passionate about nurturing the talented PR professionals of the future, over the past 12 months we’ve hosted five work experience students in a bid to celebrate the industry, encourage fresh perspectives and inspire a new generation of superstars.

Our MD, Rhi shares why, as an agency, we’re eager to connect and collaborate with the local community, and showcase the abundance of benefits that our sector – and Zen in particular – has to offer:

“Over the past few months, we welcomed Chloe Bush, Erin Williams, Phoebe Jones, Eliza Rawlings and Ellie Picknell to Zen. It’s a real pleasure to meet so many local individuals that are passionate and excited about the sector, keen to learn what the industry has to offer, and what the role entails.

“We’re proud to regularly host students from school age through to degree level, immersing them into the world of PR and throwing them into an array of activity. All too often we learn of stories of past work experience placements, whereby the student has been sat in the corner, tasked to work independently and not spoken to until past 5pm when they ask to leave. This is really sad to hear – and I imagine it’s also incredibly disheartening for the students.

“Everything we do should be a win for all, and work placements are no different. At Zen, we strive to make it a thoroughly enjoyable and realistic representation of what this industry is like, make our team available and on-hand to answer all and any questions, and to - ultimately - encourage the students to bring their fantastic skillset into the industry.

“We value the opportunity and the benefits they offer to us as an agency, too – introducing us to some fantastic individuals, strengthening our relationship with local schools, colleges and universities, as well as bringing us diverse and novel thoughts, opinions, and perspectives.”

Ellie Picknell is currently studying Sociology and Criminology at University of Birmingham, and temporarily joined the Zen team in August to further her education about a career in PR.

She said: “I wanted to attend Zen Communications to understand more about the world of PR, and Zen really stood out to me due to their ethos and genuine care for staff wellbeing.

“Before I started, I mostly associated PR with traditional media, but after learning about some of its pitfalls I quickly realised how much more there is to the sector – especially thanks to Zen’s Five Pillars strategy. Following my work experience at Zen, I am definitely considering a career in PR!”

We’d love to hear from you if you have any work experience tales or anecdotes to share – whether it’s tips to ensuring it’s always a mutual win, or if members of your team originally started as a student intern…


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