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PRSP joined the Far Eastern University (FEU) in celebrating COMM WEEK last May 3 to 7, 2021 by supporting the various activities designed to encourage FEU’s students to discuss the topics and issues that shake the communication industry today.

Part of the celebration was a forum that dissected the the current state of communication practice in the country. Headlining the event last May 6 was PRSP president Norman Agatap, APR, who delivered a keynote address outlining the challenges and opportunities that face communication professionals. Titled, “POWERSHIFTS: Where Momentum Lies in Communication Today,” the presentation highlighted the power that consumers of content now wield in shaping public perception, and the role they play in helping to curb the rise of misinformation and disinformation in current society.

After the keynote address, reactors from various universities joined a fireside chat to assess what communication students can do while in school to contribute significantly to society. In that discussion were Masahide Romas of the FEU Comm Society, Marymon Reyes of the UST Journalism Society, Julia Quizon of Ateneo de Manila ACOMM, Leandro Purisima of the College of Mass Communication Student Council of the University of the Philippines in Diliman, Gwyneth Binas of De La Salle University’s Team Communication, and Gian Valiente of San Juan de Letran’s Media Works.

With the communication industry evolving rapidly, it is edifying to see how our current crop of students are stepping up and equipping themselves with knowledge and tools to make a positive change in the world through communication.

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swuThe pandemic has given PRSP a reason and opportunity to amp up its efforts and reach out to communication students nationwide. Through the PR Caravan, PRSP’s program to encourage students of Public Relations, Advertising, Marketing Communication, Journalism, and other related course to pursue a career in communication, the Society has been knocking on the doors of colleges and universities around the country to schedule free webinars for students learning from home during the lockdown. Such webinars were mounted recently for Southwestern University (SWU) and the University of  San Carlos (USC) in Cebu.

Two PRSP members and resource speakers dialogued with the eighty students and faculty members of SWU and USC that joined the Cebu PR Caravan last April 23, 2021. Mang Inasal PR manager Ed Timbungco, APR discussed the process of creating impactful and effective PR campaigns by describing the strategic thinking that goes into the development of plan and citing some successful case studies in recent years. On the other hand, PRSP president and Grupo Agatep managing director Norman Agatep, APR shared skill sets that students ought to develop to become effective and strategic communication practitioners after graduation. Both entertained questions raised by participants of the session.

To address the queries of those who have yet to decide on their college course, SWU mounted a second webinar, this time for its Senior High School students. On May 14, 2021, Agatep was joined by Cebu Pacific Air spokesperson Michelle Rose Lim in an intimate discussion with SWU professor Ar-Ar Roncesvalles. The three answered questions raised by students interested to know more about the career options of those who eventually graduate from SWU’s college of design + communication.

As students continue to practice distance learning these days, PRSP aims to double its PR Caravan efforts and engage participants online, reaching more participants and influencing more young minds than before the pandemic.

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VAX POPULI: PRSP’s Professional Development Session Tackles the Need to Drive COVID-19 Vaccine Acceptance


As part of PRSP’s activities to impart information encouraging members to effect positive change through their work, the Society’s first ProfDev session for 2021 equipped participants with the knowledge to craft COVID-19 vaccine rollout communication strategies that would aid in the country’s efforts to achieve herd immunity. The webinar, which was mounted on April 20, was a joint initiative of the PRSP, International Association of Business Communicators (IABC) Philippines, and International Public Relations Association (IPRA) Philippines.

Titled VAX POPULI: DRIVING COVID-19 VACCINE ACCEPTANCE, the event also aimed to provide a platform for collaboration between the government and the private sector on vaccine awareness and acceptance, and to increase vaccine acceptance levels in participants’ organizations.

Invited to lead the discussion were three distinguished guests. McDonald’s Philippines Managing Director and Ingat Angat Tayong Lahat Communications Advocacy Co-Lead Margot Torres revealed what her group has been doing to rally the private sector to participate in the fight against COVID-19 and shared communication templates which participants can personalize and spread to promote information on the country’s vaccination program. Meanwhile, Dr. Mario Panaligan, president of the Philippine College of Physicians, debunked myths about the COVID-19 vaccine and explained why getting vaccinated sooner rather than later with the currently available vaccines is an important step to stem the deadly virus. Lastly, the Department of Health (DOH) Health Promotion Bureau Chief and Special Assistant to the Secretary Dr. Beverly Lorraine Ho discussed the RESBAKUNA campaign of the DOH and stressed the importance of harnessing communication to achieve COVID-19 herd immunity.

Herd immunity occurs when a substantial portion of the population is immune to a disease, in this case COVID-19, thus protecting individuals who have not developed immunity. The greater the proportion of a population that is immune to  COVID-19, the lower the probability that a susceptible person will come in contact with an infectious person. Herd immunity is beneficial to various segments of society including children who are too young to be vaccinated, the elderly who cannot mount an optimal immune response to a vaccine, people who have inadequate access to immunization, and people who remain unvaccinated by choice.

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