Eighty PeRcent of life

      47 Comments on Eighty PeRcent of life

“Eighty percent of life is showing up.” — Woody Allen

Writer-Director- Comedian Woody Allen

Writer-Director-Comedian Woody Allen

When students roll their eyes at the notion of attending PR-related events outside of class, I feel compelled to make the argument that it’s for their own good. And, to be sure, it is.

Countless students have found internships, gotten interviews and been offered jobs from those they met at PRSSA-sponsored events.  They’ve also participated in professional development events held by organizations such as the Public Relations Society of America (PRSA) or the Public Relations Professionals of Long Island (PRPLI) that sometimes charge a fee. I suggest the $10 or $20 cost is a small but very worthwhile investment in their futures.  Some on- and off-campus networking events and professional programs are free, so the only investments needed are time and a personal commitment to create opportunities.

There are always good reasons NOT to show up at an event.  We can all point to other obligations, from jobs to homework to family to going out with friends. But each time we don’t participate, we’ve missed a chance to meet people who can help us learn and grow professionally.

If you’re a student, some of your fellow classmates (and your future competition for jobs) get it.  They understand the need to make an effort if they’re serious about a public relations career.  They’re also the ones who get hired soon after or sometimes even before they graduate.

For 30 years, I was pretty much never hired after answering an ad.  Just about every position I’ve held, client I’ve signed, and PR campaign I’ve conducted, began with a professional relationship I had made with someone who was later in a position to hire me.  In fact, I got my first PR job when I was recruited by a former classmate who then held a corporate position.  The moral of the story: You never know who’ll end up in a place of influence and importance.

So, make friends with the person sitting next to you.  Come to on- and off-campus events.  Participate, network and learn.  Show up.  Your thoughts?

47 thoughts on “Eighty PeRcent of life

  1. Laura L.

    Although I’ve only just begun to study public relations, I already know the importance of attending PR-related events. I have heard from so many PR professionals how important it is to network and create strong relationships even while still in school, so that you’ll already be on the radar when it comes to finding a job. This is why I joined PRSSA. Not only will it help me network and give me valuable tips and advice for the field, but I will also have a great advantage when it comes to starting my career.

  2. Gabrielle Furman

    When I was finished reading this blog I realized how important it is to get involved and to talk to many different people. This is because you never know who you are going to meet and what opportunities they might have for you. This is why I joined PRSSA because it will help me get involved in the PR industry, introduce me to different people and help me network.

  3. Jennifer Im

    Up until now, I’ve “trimmed” out individuals whom I believed would be detrimental to my physical, mental, moral, and spiritual health. My question is, as absolutely vital it is network, do you keep the door open to all kinds of people regardless of how easily these individuals get under your skin without even meaning to, so long as they may benefit you further down the line? Life isn’t fair, so it’s difficult to tell who will hold positions that will help us and who won’t, and I realize that in the field, I’ll be forced to interact with those exact individuals, but do I need to actively invite such individuals into my life for the sake of networking?

  4. jesabelle woman

    After reading this post, I truly understand how important it is to break out of your shell and talk to people. You never know when a simple “nice to meet you” can turn into a future job oppertunity. Students don’t always realize that in order to get their dream jobs they have to put themselves out there, not just wait until they are found.

  5. Whitney Shepherd (@WhitneyPRGirl)

    I believe this is one of the most important blog post and the one piece of advice every PR student needs to take seriously. Since my first public relations class my freshman year, I learned that the profession of public relations is all about relationships and who you know. The entire profession is built around your contacts and who you can mingle with at meetings and events. I find in extremely important to go out and network outside of the classroom. Since my freshman year I have started a contact list of all the people that I have met that could potentially help me in the future from professors, to companies looking for interns, all the way to my parents old high school friends now working in the communications business. It is all about those connections and relationships and putting yourself out there. Meeting new people is really the only way one is going to get the most out of their education and truly be prepared for the real world.

  6. Ashley P.

    I couldn’t agree with you more, professor! Networking is so important, especially in the communications world. You never know who you’re going to meet or the impact they may have on your life later on, which is why going to these networking events and dinners is so beneficial. I never really thought of my classmates as a valuable connection to have, but I realize now that they are just as important as the professionals that I meet.

  7. bharran

    This post is so true Professor Morosoff! Over the last 3 years during my time at Hofstra and at my internships, networking has been the term that is key. I have met so many great people through the communication school at Hofstra (former students that hired me for internships) as well as landing two great internships at a large media company due to the people I maintained relationships with. As I am about to graduate and apply for jobs, I know now more than ever that attending events, managing relationships, and getting your face out there is the best way to success.

  8. Natalia Dutt

    I definitely agree with everything you said here. It is so important for students to network and go to as many events as possible whether it is for public relations or any other job field. A major way to network and get involved is through joining student organizations. Now that it is my senior year I can definitely see the benefits of doing all of those things. Like the Woody Allen quote said, life is 80% about showing up.

  9. Sarah Ramos

    Networking is extremely valuable to a student. As an undergrad I was able to build many professional relationships through networking I did through the different organizations I participated in on campus. Being involved and making sure that the organization is an organization that not only has a large alumni base, but also an active alumni base is a huge step in building professional relationships. Companies are more likely to hire an individual that already has connections within a company than an individual that doesn’t.

  10. Daniel Walsh

    I could not agree more with you professor. A lot of students feel that just showing up to class and doing homework will be enough to succeed in the real world when in reality that isn’t true whatsoever. Before I came to Hofstra I was very involved in clubs at Suffolk County Community College and have made great connections from my time there. Since I have been at Hofstra it has been harder for me to participate more with having an internship, a longer commute and taking 17 credits. From these experiences though I have learned that although it looks nice to have a great private university on your resume it really doesn’t matter where you get your education from (within reason) as long as the connections you make with the people around you are strong.

  11. Devin Jaffar

    From my personal experience, I held four of my internships during my undergraduate studies by attending workshops and seminars. I feel that networking is very important and first impression matters. You never know who you might meet in an elevator, that is why you should always have an elevator speech and present yourself in a proper manner.

  12. Nicole Lombardo

    I never understood the true importance of networking until recently in my college career. I have come to a point where I am a senior and just credits away from graduating. I have to start thinking of life outside of college and finding opportunities for my future. Knowing people is a huge step in the right direction whether it is a professor at Hofstra or someone you work with at an internship. I think it is important to present yourself in a professional manner always because you never know when you will meet some who could change your future for the better. “Be nice and friendly, they could help you one day” is my everyday mantra now.

  13. Anjelica Johnson

    Networking is extremely important for finding future jobs or internships. A large majority of the internships I had in undergrad, I was able to find through networking with alumni who worked in that specific field or going to career events. These events are also a great way to make sure your application/resume doesn’t get lost in the process from filling it out online. I think you’re more memorable if you meet someone at a networking event and give them your resume versus blindly filling out an application online.

  14. erikfreitas

    I agree with those post on many levels. I believe that the concept of getting out there and meeting people and networking is paramount with any major at Hofstra. If one doesn’t go out to career fairs and start to really apply themselves in their industry and literally get their foot in the door as soon as possible, their chance of getting a job and working successfully in the industry slims down considerably.

  15. Doug Gillies

    It can’t be said enough how important networking is. Of course everyone has other obligations, but it comes down to what is more important. where are your values placed? At the Grad school level we all owe it to ourselves to try some seminars and meetings. Even if we know we want to do something else in life with a background in PR there is always an opportunity to learn something or meet someone.

  16. Meredith O'connor

    I agree very much especially when it states the importance of chatting with people, networking and being involved. It is so much more then just being there. Today networking is so important that it is necessary for any job.

  17. Danielle Notaro

    I completely agree with this post. In fact, it actually reminds me of the saying “its not what you know but who you know.” Making connections and then leaving a lasting impression is key in any field of work. Personally, I know that I kept this idea in my head while interning this past summer. Even if tasks became tedious, I would always remind myself that by doing my best and working as hard as I could, I would leave a lasting impression on my supervisors. In turn, I received a wonderful recommendation and plan on keeping in touch.

  18. meghanazralon

    These events not only create great connections but they really take you out of your comfort zone. If you want to be successful you’re probably going to have to do some things that you aren’t fond of. These events really help you manage your fear of the real world and help put your name out there.

  19. Amy Schildwaster

    I think it is very important to attend events but it is also very important to do the right things afterwards. If you do make a connect at a networking event but don’t give the new contact your contact information or make and effort to reach out shortly after the event, there is little chance you will be remembered. I’ve made that mistake too many times where I’ve sat on a business card for months wanting to email the contact but always being afraid that they wouldn’t remember me.

  20. Deana Meccariello

    I completely agree. In the internet age, so many people think networking only entails making a linkedin account. This just isn’t the case. I hope I can make time in my busy schedule to attend some of PRSSA’s upcoming events.

  21. tylercutler

    I absolutely agree with this, and networking isn’t just something that is useful in PR but in all careers. As a dancer I experience the same thing – people I used to dance with are now in companies all across the country, and are touring and performing in professional venues. Knowing them and having history with them will be vital to me if I ever want to make it in that world. The same goes for PR. I must admit, I am definitely guilty of not going to events because I’m too busy or have other obligations, (that’s what happens when you have two demanding majors I guess,) but I still understand the importance of trying to attend as many events as possible, and when I have a free moment that’s the first thing I look to do.

  22. elizah9

    You are absolutely 100 percent correct! Students often complain about attending outside events when in reality they need too. These events are the only promising outlets that can earn students internship opportunities and jobs outside of college. I cannot lie, I am sometimes one of those students who complain about attending events that are out my way; however, I am starting to realize that jobs don’t come flying on to people’s laps. They are given to people who work hard and put themselves out there. I am honestly going to start looking at the bigger picture and pay for those $10 or $20 events because with those payments I am investing into my future. I often by $120 Steve madden boots, so why can’t I buy a small ticket that can open tons of opportunities for myself.

  23. Felicia Colavito

    I must say that I 100% agree with everything that was said here. Students are often given so many opportunities to make connections or to even learn new things for their future here at Hofstra, but many people, including myself do not take advantage of all of these great opportunities. Last semester I took an advertising class, and for extra credit my classmates and I could go to three different guest speakers throughout the year during common hour. I ended up going, solely for the extra credit, but I ended up taking away so many great tips. The speakers included many alumni who were established in their careers, who came back to briefly describe what they do and tell us how they got there. I felt that hearing someone else’s story made me feel so much more excited about my future. Each speaker gave great advice on what you should say in an interview/ how you should act. They would also tell us what were good things to put on a resume, and explained to us what they look for when they are going to hire a new employee. Besides all this, attending this extra credit gave me a connection for my future. I can’t even believe I wouldn’t have gone had this not been for extra credit. This experience for me has now made me realize I should be taking advantage of all the opportunities around me. This post made me super excited for the PR speaker tomorrow!

  24. jheiden1

    I couldn’t agree more with this. Last spring, I attended my first PRSSA networking conference. I was absolutely terrified. I knew I would be around professionals twice my age, with at least twice the knowledge and I didn’t think I could hold an intellectual conversation with them. After almost backing out on 3 different occasions, I finally bit the bullet and went inside the event. It was honestly one of the best moves I’ve made so far at Hofstra. I gained several connections that day and it also diminished the fear I had of networking. Now, I do my best to attend any PR event available.

  25. agionesi

    I 100% agree, even my internship that I have right now is through a connection. While I have attended networking events, I have to admit they are a bit intimidating and it can be easy to find reasons not to go. However, I know the importance of them and think making a connection is really the only way to get a job today.

  26. michaela marano

    Couldn’t agree more! Throughout high school, i worked two jobs and both of them i acquired by connections i had made in my community. One of the main reasons i chose to major in PR was because of the hands on learning that is involved. The main reason i chose Hofstra is because of their reputable program that is filled with hands on experience and networking connections that other schools don’t have. I much rather be required to attend events in my field than be reading hypothetical theories out of a text book. Although PR theories are important, I believe getting out in the working field is a much more effective way to learn. I think students should be excited to attend these events, on and off campus.

  27. kcormi2

    As an undergraduate student in any program, it is important to network and invest time in your future. However, it is even more vital in order to be successful in PR. Public Relations is largely about building and maintaining professional relationships and beginning that process as soon as possible by attending on and off campus events. Personally, I had not always taken this advice (even though I always knew it was true) until becoming an upperclassman. Balancing school, work, being Vice President of my sorority as well as other daily obligations can be consuming and overwhelming, as most students will tell you. However, waking up a few extra hours early or missing out on a social event are small prices to pay for success in the future.

  28. Rebecca Costa

    Last semester, I took PR180D, an elective course which required me to attend 8 different events outside of class. Yes, it was sometimes a pain, but since taking the class I understand why networking is so important and why having that out-of-classroom experience is so crucial. Personally, when told I have to do something that isn’t part of my regular routine, I complain. In actuality, attending the event is informative and really isn’t that much of a hassle. As a sophomore in college who doesn’t have class until 1 on Wednesdays, even waking up to attend a common hour meeting can be difficult. I guess I really need to start thinking about how important connections I make now will be for my future.

  29. mconno25

    I believe networking to on- and off- campus events is very important especially for PR. It’s all about who you know. I always fill my schedule during the school years that I find myself very inflexible that I don’t have time for other obligations. However, with it being my senior year and finding a job is right around the corner, I have realized I have to start investing my time in what is actually important. I am very excited to attend the networking dinner this year and reach out to people who could possibly help me in the future, but I don’t want my attendance to events to stop there. I plan on joining PRSSA and going to as many events as possible.

    See you there professor!!

  30. Courtney Zanosky

    While many times I do find myself guilty of missing opportunities because of a cost, I am slowly realizing the benefit showing up has. In the end, it is better to pay the actual, monetary price than to pay the personal price of missing out on countless opportunities. Based upon our discussion in class and the information included in this post, I am motivated to actually get involved and start networking. I also really enjoyed the Woody Allen quote that you included. Life can only be lived if you actually go live it. The way one lives a life is a choice. I need to start choosing a more pro-active lifestyle in order to land a career and live the life I want.

  31. bibianabogues

    Networking and connections are key factors to success these days, it would only hurt to not take advantage of these events. I do admit it can be hard to make time when there are various other things going on, but like you put it, those $10 you spent could very well land you your first job. One of the reasons I came to Hofstra is because of the numerous connections the PR department has and the events they host both on and off campus are great for students. Even just to have the experience of going to different events, I couldn’t agree with your post more.

  32. Sarah Abuharaz

    I love this post because one of the reasons I transferred to Hofstra is for all the great opportunities for PR students. At my last school, there wasn’t even a PR major at all. I had a few schools to choose from but I heard all about the resources and opportunities as Hofstra. I intended to get involved in these kind of events as much as I can. I don’t understand why some students are so against going to such events because some schools don’t have these kind of resources. Being a PR person requires going to events and getting to know people. Do it now while in college to start early and get practice, it’s not going to hurt. It’ll actually open doors for us.

  33. Areanna Rufrano

    I could agree more with this blog entry. As previously discussed in class, public relations is a very broad field and is involved with a variety of industries. The events that any PR organization offers is beneficial to both public relations majors and any other majors. It is a chance for students to network and gather more information, which could hopefully provide the resources to achieve a certain goal. Attending any of these events couldn’t hurt you, and even if that is not your intended field, the opportunities presented are limitless. We are defined by the opportunities we take and Wayne Gretzky was absolutely right when he said, “You miss one hundred percent of the shots you don’t take.” So if eighty percent of life is just showing up, then the hard part is over and we decide what to do with that remanding twenty percent.

  34. nikkigyftopoulos

    Networking is key in any field of study and during my years here at Hofstra, I have tried my best to take part in as many events that I possibly can. I think that one of the most beneficial things I can do to further my career is to network with my peers in my classes. They will be in positions at companies that I may want to work at eventually. Some of them may even interview me for a job or be my boss at one point. That is why it is so important to network and stay in contact with your connections. I have seen this networking process firsthand in my dance career already. Some of the people I have competed against in dance are now working in LA. I have gained multiple opportunities from making connections with these people. If I had not networked, or if I had made a negative first impression, I never would have had those opportunities.

    For these reasons, I try to always attend events where networking will be occurring. We are lucky enough to have a PR department at Hofstra that encourages this and provides us with convenient networking opportunities. These events will never be offered to us in the future for free or inexpensively. This is the time to make the most of what is given to us!

  35. Max Eisenberg

    I agree that networking certainly helps and I admit to the fact that I’m not very good at networking because for the most part, I keep to myself and keep quiet. I went to the networking dinner last year and met some interesting people but learned that to stand out in those types of events, you do need to be rather talkative. However, I think that is only part of getting a job and standing out on your resume can also be important, like doing interesting and different things with your life and just standing out in general.

  36. nixablevins

    Last year I attended the PRSSA Networking dinner at Hofstra University. I felt a bit nervous since I had no idea what to expect, but I really enjoyed talking to the PR professionals. I felt that I learned a lot by listening to their personal stories. Many students asked great questions. The professionals were willing to answer all the questions I had. By the end of the dinner I found that I had a much better idea of what it was like on a day-to-day basis at these agencies. I am excited to attend as many events as possible this year.

  37. Sarah Lopez

    This blog post is so spot on. As students get closer to graduating, they realize the importance of these types of events. It’s all about who you know, especially in the PR industry. Networking events are the perfect way to meet new people and learn more about the PR industry. These events are definitely an investment for our future. Heading out to an event for a few hours one night isn’t a big commitment. Also at these networking events, you never know who you’re walking into a room with. It certainly may be someone that can later on offer you a position at their company. Following up with these connections is crucial. It doesn’t hurt to keep them updated on what’s new.

  38. Bert Cunningham

    There is also a Woody Allen movie character who states bluntly: “The world is run by those who show up.” PR pros who are not out in the mix are missing out on gaining insights, experience and valuable connections for getting his or her job done, and in getting their personal brand known face to face. My first job was the only one I got through an ad. All the rest over some 44 years were through building credibility in the marketplace and personal connections. And I was fortunate enough to get many job offers I turned down because I was enjoying the job I had too much. So from first-hand experience: Build your job skills and credibility, and get out and be part of the group shows up to run the world!

  39. Jenna Delio

    Very well said professor! It is true, without putting forth the effort to end up where you want to be, you won’t succeed. There is no time for dumb excuses to be made; the only reasons to not go to events or to put your foot through the door is medical or a serious issue. I have had a lot of set backs and a lot that has held me back from doing the things I have always wanted to do while in college.
    It feels good to know that I am on the path of healing and slowly feeling better and better so that I can start doing the important things I have not had the chance of being a part of! Looking forward to the networking dinner.

  40. Gia Palomo

    I completely agree with making the effort to go to outside events but a part of that is also making the effort to follow through with those contacts you’ve made from the event. It never occurred to me either that the classmates I have now could also be considered valuable connections in the future, which makes me realize how much I have to catch up on.

  41. Lyndi Catania

    I think that the quote said by Woody Allen was the perfect way to start this blog post. I am currently searching and applying for PR internships for the spring. Doing this is making me become even more motivated to attend some events. I already know the importance of knowing people, but I admit I need to start networking with PR professionals. I am excited to attend some PRSSA meetings throughout the semester, as well as the networking dinner in November. I definitely feel I will learn the most about the PR world this school year.

  42. Vanessa Felder

    My professors in undergrad emphasized the importance of networking. But being the lazy and stubborn student that I was, I did not apply their wise words and unfortunately missed out on a lot of opportunities. To say the least that is one of my biggest regrets. Now that I am older and have suffered the consequences of NOT investing in my future earlier, I realize just how much as students we need to take our future seriously to be successful. Like you mentioned Professor Morosoff, the person sitting next to us could very well be our competition, and will get hired sooner if they took the time to build those proper relationships. Speaking from experience, I can honestly say that there are no excuses (other than emergencies) that should keep students from investing in their future. To all of those reading this, let me be a lesson. Don’t end up like me and waste two years after college struggling to find a PR job. Take heed to Professor Morosoff’s words for they are indeed true. Now that I am in grad school I am taking every opportunity available and being a part of PRSSA as much as I can. I can’t emphasize enough the importance of investing in yourself and future. Doing so will get you one step ahead of the competition and will pay off immensely.

  43. Sandra

    Some valid points here. Networking is huge and in PR especially, it’s all about who you know and the connections you make.

    That being said, this blog post felt more like a venting session to convince your students to go to an event 🙂

    1. jmorosoff Post author

      No venting here, Sandra. There are multiple events year-round that students can attend, so I had no particular agenda other than to try and make a convincing case that it’s the students who take such initiatives who are the ones who end up working in PR!

  44. Ashley Iadanza

    This had many interesting points that I never thought about before. This is motivating me to try and get involved with more student organizations that help me with networking opportunities.


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