#Occupytheclassroom

If you are a public relations student, professional or if you simply keep current with the news, then you have heard a lot about the Occupy movement or #occupyeverything. A couple of weeks ago, sympathizers of the Occupy Philly movement held a rally on Temple University’s campus and encouraged students to skip their classes in order to attend. They stated in their flyer, “…don’t worry about your classes. They won’t get you a job”.

Of course, no one is recommending that you skip your classes. You are paying good money for a college education but it made me question, what exactly do you get out of college classes and what exactly will get you a job? Below are some benefits to seeking higher education:

1. A higher paying salary. On average, those who earn a college degree typically earn a higher salary. So while that ‘chemistry of wine’ course may seem completely inapplicable to your career aspirations, it will lead you to that degree, proving to be worthwhile in the long run. Also, try to make these ‘inapplicable’ courses applicable. Network with other students in your class and impress your professor for a recommendation in the future.

2. Job availability. Even in today’s gloomy job market, holding a college diploma augments your chances of finding a job over a high school graduate. As public relations and communication students we are even more likely to find a job because we are so diversified in what we learn in college and what our responsibilities can, and will, include.

3. Internships and career events. Your college’s career days and internship experiences will put you in touch with real-time markets and companies, giving you the hands-on kind of knowledge that will give you a push into the “real world” post-graduation. By taking advantage of these opportunities, you will be able to schedule classes and decide what organizations to join accordingly.

4. Networking opportunities. Your college will bring you into contact with a diverse number of professionals. They will include your professors, adjuncts, speakers, and advisors. You will not only be able to use them as references and ask for recommendations, but for most of your professors, this is their full-time job and they want to see you succeed.

5. The social aspect. While college is a place of academia it is also, in a sense, an institution of socialization. College helps you to ‘come out of your shell’ and learn how to develop into the social butterfly that we all can be. Socializing is a very important aspect, and requirement, for a public relations student and professional. This is your time to network with other students at your university or other young professionals outside of your current networks.

Again, don’t skip your classes. Instead, self-evaluate what you have been getting out of your classes and make sure that you always strive to get your money’s worth to best suit your career aspirations. Your classes should work for you and serve your education needs.

How beneficial have your classes been? What will you do to make sure that you are getting the most out of your college classes?

This guest blog was written by PRowl Public Relations staff member Cori Shearer.

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