Loyola University Chicago

School of Communication


Expanded awards and speakers highlight annual AD/PR Reception

Expanded awards and speakers highlight annual AD/PR Reception

By Maggie Yarnold

The 2018 AD/PR Reception is experiencing a year of firsts.

The reception, which consists of a cocktail hour and award ceremony for students, has existed for a decade. But this is the first year it was planned by associate professor and program director of public relations Pamela Morris. This is the first year it will host two guest speakers. And it is the first year awards were submitted and will be presented for three different categories: public service, advertising and public relations.

This year, Stacy Bingle, senior consumer trends analyst for Mintel and co-editor of Mintel’s 2018 Consumer Trends Report, will be speaking during the reception. Her colleague, Loyola graduate and Trends Analyst for North America, Iliana Alvarenga will accompany her. Alvarenga graduated from Loyola in 2014.

The 2018 AD/PR Reception will be from 6-8 p.m. on Monday, April 16.

Bingle said she is most excited to speak informally with students at the event and discuss their interests. She said Mintel is always hiring and expanding rapidly, so students interested in research should consider applying.

“[I’m excited] to chat with the attendees and get their perspectives on how they see what they’ve learned translating to the real world,” Bingle said. “I’m looking forward to … learning about how this information [from the trends report] helps them, but also just want to see what they are hoping to go out and do in the world.”

Mintel is a global award-winning provider of market research. Bingle said the trend reports produced by Mintel are used by advertising agencies and companies to understand why consumers are making certain purchases and how to target audiences.

“I think it’s interesting to see how differently [ad firms] think about consumer trends,” Bingle said. [Agencies must be] thought provoking … innovative … in the times. Agencies come to the table with a different perspective … they want [Mintel] to challenge them more and give them their next wave knowledge.”

Morris said she is excited to have Bingle and Alvarenga attend, because it is an added incentive for professionals to attend as well. This is supposed to be the first cocktail party networking event for the Advertising and Public Relation seniors and juniors. She said she expects around 125 people to attend the event, and it is open to all upperclassmen in advertising and public relations.

“[This is about] networking. You have to be pretty polished in this business,” Morris said. “You have to be good with people, you have to network. In these professions you work in groups … it’s about bouncing information off of each other and that’s when sparks fly.”

Awards of Excellence will be distributed to the winning students for each category during the ceremony. Morris said around a dozen students or groups had submitted projects to the Advertising and Public Relations sections, but she was unsure of the number of submissions for public service. Previously, awards were only offered for public service.

The winner of the public service category will also receive a Ebeling PR-ize of a $2,000 scholarship. However, all winners will be entered into a raffle for a boat ride from professor Herb Ritchell. Morris hopes to find sponsorships for the other two categories in the future, so all winners can receive a monetary prize.

Everyone who attends will receive raffle tickets at the door for prizes from Kendra Scott, Soup Box, Hampton Inn and more. Morris will also set up table tents throughout the event as a way for people to talk and get involved with the Snapchat filters and hashtags associated with the event.

“We want this to be interactive and fun, thought provoking. And we want this to be a way for people to have conservations and mingle,” Morris said. “It’s connecting it to everything. We’re using all sorts of social media.”

Morris said planning this event has taken many people and she’s excited to see the entire event come together. She said she had to keep the overall program in mind while planning the event because it is growing and transforming.

“We’re graduating our first cohort of advertising creative majors. There are few universities that have tackled educating advertising creatives … this is a major accomplishment,” Morris said. “It’s a great time to be here and everybody should have good reason to celebrate. There’s change on the horizon and we’re going to embrace it to better our teaching and learning of our students.”

Morris said having Bingle and Alvarenga speak is perfect because advertising, public relations and public service must incorporate research. Morris said she encouraged all upperclassmen who submitted projects to tell their bosses and colleagues at their internship companies to attend.

The 2018 AD/PR Reception will be April 16 from 6-8 p.m. in Kasbeer Hall on the 15th floor of Corboy Law Center.